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There's nothing like a Gen 3 heater to clog up by the time cold weather sets in. In the past, I have depended on others to get the heater flushed, but...

After 2 tries by Midas to clear my heater (with a cooling system flush) with LESS heat each time, I decided to try it on my own.

The easiest way to get at the heater fittings is to work with the hoses attached to the engine (water pump on passenger side, engine block on the driver side). You don't risk breaking off the fragile fittings on the firewall that go to the heater.

On the passenger side, it's easy if you take out the top bolt on the generator brace, loosen the other bolt on the brace and swing the brace back.

[attachmentid=22718]

Then with space to access the hose clamp, you now remove the hose from the heater to the water pump.

You then fit a Home Depot hose repair end (about $4) to the heater hose and connect it up to a garden hose leading to your outdoor faucet.

[attachmentid=22719]

On the other side, remove the corrugated rubber air intake (remove one electrical fitting and remove a small hose -- loosen the stainless clamps and move the air intake to the side).

[attachmentid=22720]

Now, with space to access the hose clamp on this side, remove the hose from the engine block.

You then fit another Home Depot hose repair end to the heater hose and connect it to a length of hose to a bucket... or to your driveway. It was freezing when I did mine, and I didn't want to turn my driveway into a skating rink.

Clamp the bypass hose. You lose points if your vise grips are so tight they cut the bypass hose...

[attachmentid=22721]

Turn water on and off at the faucet several times. This cycles the pressure inside the heater core and loosens up crud. If the engine hoses or heater core rupture from city water pressure, it was time to replace them anyway. Then let it run for a while (In my case, long enough to fill the 5-gallon bucket.) Plenty of crud should come out. Empty the bucket.

Repeat until the crud flow has pretty much stopped. At least a cup of particulate and flake crud came out of my heater.

The Clinton Add-on
And now, the Clinton touch, which I discovered purely by accident simply because I wanted to remove as much water from the heater system as possible. Didn't want to dilute the antifreeze, which was brand new from the Midas flushings...

I took the inlet hose off the garden hose and blew into it,

However, after I blew the heater clear of water, it was obvious that a bunch more crud had come loose as a result of the blow... er.. Clinton job. Hooked it back up to the garden hose and the water ran brown with lots of crud.

I repeated the Clinton job four more times - more brown water, more crud. Apparently blowing the heater clear agitates the water inside enough to really clean the pipes out. Purists should note that there was no blue dress or cigar involved in any of this.

After hooking it back up again, replacing the alternator brace, replacing the air intake and its electrical and air connections... so much heat I actually had to turn the heater down. Before this, I never turned my heater down in 2 years.


Forgot to include the overview photo:

[attachmentid=22722]
 

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This is definitely good information and should be stickied! :thumb:

Good wright up. The Clinton thing was a bit random though.
 

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Yes a good write up and it's important to backflush the core like you did.

I've also in the past let some Iron Out or CLR to slowly dribble though the ore too. Put a funnel on one hose and clamp the other hose to restrict the draining. Just let it drip through.
 

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good write up, ive been needing to do this before the really cold weather gets here
[/b]
psh...You don't have really cold weather :p You can have some of ours when it gets here :lol:

The only thing I've done differently is to put a towel in between the bypass hose and the vise grips, just for some extra protection so the hose isn't damaged. Backflushing FTW! Good writeup :thumb:
 

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This should work on a Gen IV is that right? I believe all the hoses are in the same spot (or rather close to the pics above)
 

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<div class='quotemain'>
good write up, ive been needing to do this before the really cold weather gets here
[/b]
psh...You don't have really cold weather :p You can have some of ours when it gets here :lol:

The only thing I've done differently is to put a towel in between the bypass hose and the vise grips, just for some extra protection so the hose isn't damaged. Backflushing FTW! Good writeup :thumb:
[/b][/quote]

yeah i know, it rarely snows here anymore :angry: ... i wish i could have some cold weather b/c it seems like im one of the few people down here that like the cold weather

how long did it take you to flush everything out?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
yeah i know, it rarely snows here anymore :angry: ... i wish i could have some cold weather b/c it seems like im one of the few people down here that like the cold weather

how long did it take you to flush everything out?
[/b]
Weather: since I did this, it has strangely warmed up in the NE (right now, it's 64 F, with today's predicted high set at 52 F :blink: ) But it will cool down... but nothing like our old stand, Michigan, though. No -10, -20 because we're moderated by the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf Stream.

Timing: remembering that I used a 5 gallon bucket, which slowed it way down as I kept hauling it to various points in our lawn that needed water, from first wrench to last, about 2 hours.

I also used the bucket to see how much crud was coming out. It was far more than I expected.

Ford_ses's recommendation of a shop towel between vise grips and bypass hose is a good one.

Dave

(Ricer333 - Gen 4? I've had a 1, 2 and 3. I'm not due for a Gen 4 for at least 3 more years... maybe someone who knows something will chime in).
 

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This should work on a Gen IV is that right? I believe all the hoses are in the same spot (or rather close to the pics above)
[/b]
Yep, it'll work exactly the same. :)

I've never moved any brackets or anything to get to the hose clamps on mine...you may not have to depending on which type of clamps are on your car and which way they're pointing.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I've never moved any brackets or anything to get to the hose clamps on mine...you may not have to depending on which type of clamps are on your car and which way they're pointing.
[/b]
Ah, youth. I'm 65 and unwilling to twist my body around for any length of time... after 3 tries with 3 different types of pliers to get the original water pump squeeze-the-ears clamp to cooperate, I decided to invest the 3 minutes needed to move the bracket. Couldn't easily see under the air intake (same please-no-body-twist as above applies), so I invested another 3 minutes losing the air intake.

For those with eyes for details, I took what purports to be the initial, 'move the bracket' photo above after the heater was clear and the hose was back on the pump, sealed with a new stainless / worm gear clamp. That also explains all the wet coolant patches.
 

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well i tried to do this but i spent like 30 minutes trying to take that stupid heater hose off of the water pump and it wouldnt come off... im just gonna take it somewhere for somebody else to do it
 

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A sometimes easier way than taking the original hoses off the water pump and thermostat is to buy a couple of those $3.99 Prestone flushkits with the tees in them. A simple swipe with a utility knife and a couple of hose clamps later in an easier to access spot of your choice and your connected to the lines. The kit even comes with hose adapters. The nice thing about this is you can flush the core any time you want with only a couple of minutes prep. Of course you will need an extra pair or two of vice grips (in addition to the one on the bypass hose to clamp ofs the heater lines forcing the hose water through the core. Padding the jaws as suggested above is a great idea.
 

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A sometimes easier way than taking the original hoses off the water pump and thermostat is to buy a couple of those $3.99 Prestone flushkits with the tees in them. A simple swipe with a utility knife and a couple of hose clamps later in an easier to access spot of your choice and your connected to the lines. The kit even comes with hose adapters. The nice thing about this is you can flush the core any time you want with only a couple of minutes prep. Of course you will need an extra pair or two of vice grips (in addition to the one on the bypass hose to clamp ofs the heater lines forcing the hose water through the core. Padding the jaws as suggested above is a great idea.
[/b]
I have one of those...that hose adapter works, but it's the leakiest thing ever. :lol2:
 

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This question may appear to be out of place but I am serious. I have not done heater core flush on any of the cars I owned for last say 20 years. Is it because I lived last 20 years in Florida and didn't use heater long enough to notice the problem? Or because Taurus has a peculiar heater core? I have 3 Tauruses, 2000, 2001 and 2005. Do you suggest I flush at least the 2000 one? Or all?
 

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Moved to Solutions to Common Problems and How To Articles.

Great writeup :thumb:
 

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As a 1997 GL owner without heat for 2+ years(couldn't afford $500 fix), I searched and read alot of guides & suggestions on what to do to get some heat. I had the cooling system drained, filled, flushed, drained & filled again. No heat. Then I read & studied OLDWAGON's "how-to" backflush my heater core. His pictures were GREAT so decided to give it a shot.
I went to Lowes and found everything I needed. I even bought a 6' length of clear tygon for dramatic "crud detection" effect. I followed the pictures to a 'T" and started the procedure. Had my son turn on the water and WOW! The water turned cloudy right away! Then it cleared up. I did the off & on surge technique and MORE cloudy water. After 10 minutes or so I noticed I had forgotten to clamp off the bypass hose(so much for following to a "T"). I rag padded & visegripped the hose (not too tightly), turned on the water and HOTDOG, ever MORE cloudy water! Surged it again several times & stopped.
Hmmm... remembered about the CLINTON "purge" and decided to give it a shot. Disconnected the supply garden hose from the heater return and "self-conciously" purged & flushed until I couldn't get anything cloudy through the tygon connected to the heater core inlet hose. Reinstalled everything, refilled & fired 'er up!
Approx 10 min later the WONDERFUL smell of HEAT permeated my ol' taurus. It was 30 deg outside but I had to turn the heat way down to less than half way. All I can say is thanks to everbody who gave me the courage to try something I had ALOT of self doubts about trying.
NOTHING went wrong, NOTHING leaked and I actually look forward (kinda) to Michigan winter weather (If I don't have to shovel)... '-) I'm really a HAPPY CAMPER!!!!! Thanks Again!! Sorry if too wordy...
 

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Discussion Starter #18
.... I'm really a HAPPY CAMPER!
[/b]
Thanks. The clear tubing is a good touch - I really could have used that. My wife thinks I'm nuts because I still announce each time I turn the heat down... 'Can you imagine! I'm actually turning the heat *down* on a *Taurus*!'
 

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does anyone have a picture of where the outlet hose is located on the engine block???? i need to try flushing my "new" '02 (no heat) and i cant find the hose to drain. Great info here!! i hope this fixes my heat issue. :)
 

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There's nothing like a Gen 3 heater to clog up by the time cold weather sets in. In the past, I have depended on others to get the heater flushed, but...

After 2 tries by Midas to clear my heater (with a cooling system flush) with LESS heat each time, I decided to try it on my own.

The easiest way to get at the heater fittings is to work with the hoses attached to the engine (water pump on passenger side, engine block on the driver side). You don't risk breaking off the fragile fittings on the firewall that go to the heater.

On the passenger side, it's easy if you take out the top bolt on the generator brace, loosen the other bolt on the brace and swing the brace back.

[attachmentid=22718]

Then with space to access the hose clamp, you now remove the hose from the heater to the water pump.

You then fit a Home Depot hose repair end (about $4) to the heater hose and connect it up to a garden hose leading to your outdoor faucet.

[attachmentid=22719]

On the other side, remove the corrugated rubber air intake (remove one electrical fitting and remove a small hose -- loosen the stainless clamps and move the air intake to the side).

[attachmentid=22720]

Now, with space to access the hose clamp on this side, remove the hose from the engine block.

You then fit another Home Depot hose repair end to the heater hose and connect it to a length of hose to a bucket... or to your driveway. It was freezing when I did mine, and I didn't want to turn my driveway into a skating rink.

Clamp the bypass hose. You lose points if your vise grips are so tight they cut the bypass hose...

[attachmentid=22721]

Turn water on and off at the faucet several times. This cycles the pressure inside the heater core and loosens up crud. If the engine hoses or heater core rupture from city water pressure, it was time to replace them anyway. Then let it run for a while (In my case, long enough to fill the 5-gallon bucket.) Plenty of crud should come out. Empty the bucket.

Repeat until the crud flow has pretty much stopped. At least a cup of particulate and flake crud came out of my heater.

The Clinton Add-on
And now, the Clinton touch, which I discovered purely by accident simply because I wanted to remove as much water from the heater system as possible. Didn't want to dilute the antifreeze, which was brand new from the Midas flushings...

I took the inlet hose off the garden hose and blew into it,

However, after I blew the heater clear of water, it was obvious that a bunch more crud had come loose as a result of the blow... er.. Clinton job. Hooked it back up to the garden hose and the water ran brown with lots of crud.

I repeated the Clinton job four more times - more brown water, more crud. Apparently blowing the heater clear agitates the water inside enough to really clean the pipes out. Purists should note that there was no blue dress or cigar involved in any of this.

After hooking it back up again, replacing the alternator brace, replacing the air intake and its electrical and air connections... so much heat I actually had to turn the heater down. Before this, I never turned my heater down in 2 years.


Forgot to include the overview photo:

[attachmentid=22722]
[/b]



very nice! just got lost on the 4th pic. where's the outlet? I just see a vise. please advise....
 
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