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coolant leaking into heater core?

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Old 05-13-2009, 08:11 PM
ztomtog2 ztomtog2 is offline
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Default coolant leaking into heater core?

my coolant level is constantly dropping at a slow rate and im thinkin its leakin into the heater core for a couple reasons. the first nd most obvious is that when i turn on my heater it smells like anti freeze which im guessing isnt a good thing to be breathing in. also every once in a while when i make a turn it sounds like ive got a waterfall under my dash and you can hear a liquid trickling through somewhere under it. it never comes into the cab or anything and im not sure where its goin but does anyone have any light to shed on my situation.
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Old 05-13-2009, 08:18 PM
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do you get any steam on the windshield ?
smell is another key indicator.

since its summertime, you could just bypass the heater core and buy some time.
the water sloshing sound is air, which will seep in at any leak point. the air can collect at the heater core because its the highest elevation spot in the system.
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Old 05-13-2009, 08:23 PM
ztomtog2 ztomtog2 is offline
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nope there never any steam or any other indicator that there might be coolant leaking into the core. only the smell. how would air make the sound of running liquid? and just a side note the heater doesnt need to be on for the sound of running water to happen.
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Old 05-13-2009, 09:10 PM
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correct. gurgling sound occurs all the time irregardless of heater on/off because the coolant flow occurs with heater on or off. the heater on/off controls the air flow across the heater box.

when the system is purged of all air like its supposed to be, then the coolant flow is smooth and quiet. when it gets air in there, the air rises to that high spot, and the coolant sort of flows under it and creates some turbulance and bubbling and gurgling and whoosing sound.

if there's no air leak anywhere, that air will slowly work out over a couple of days of normal driving. if you have a leak, it just stays.
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Old 05-13-2009, 09:13 PM
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ahh that makes perfect sense. so its safe to say i have a leak which is causing the gurgling sound and the smell of anti freeze when i turn on the heater?
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Old 05-13-2009, 09:35 PM
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probably. if so, it will likely worsen to include wet floorboard and steam on windshield

for a jury rig temporary solution - you could disconnect the heater hoses from the heater core at the firewall. connect the heater hoses together. cap off the core to prevent contamination.

here's another possible move, which will be heavily flamed... put some stop leak in it. or an egg, or pepper.

beware. heater core replacement is a pain, requires removal of the dash, and expensive to pay to have it done.
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Old 05-13-2009, 09:38 PM
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removing the dash isnt to huge of pain. i woudlnt let anyone else touch my truck and if somethings broken ill do what it takes to fix it except for tranny. after the dash is off how easy is it to get to the heater core.
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Old 05-13-2009, 11:30 PM
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i'm the same way with my truck, anything but the transmission i do myself.
after you get the dash off you have to take the ac canister thing (don't know the name) off its bracket, take the evap case loose and pull it back till the canister thing touches the firewall and you should have enough room for the heater core hoses to clear the firewall. the only thing holding the heater core in is a bolt and a bracket that holds the hoses, and a ground strap to the firewall. when i did mine i didn't unhook the ac lines like you're supposed to because with a little elbow grease you can work the heater core hoses through the firewall without unhooking them. getting the dash off is the hardest part, after that its easy.
also when i did mine i took the steering column out and that made things easier. taking it off is pretty simple too, 4 bolts to the dash, gear cable to instrument cluster, a handfull of electrical connectors, 1 bolt holding the column to the knuckle in the engine, 3 bolts on the firewall behind the brake pedal and you can pull it right out.
some guys have changed theirs just by taking the dash loose and pulling it back, then reaching behind it and changed it, i don't see how thats possible but hats off to them.
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Old 05-14-2009, 08:50 AM
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You aren't always going to get steam or the smell if the heater core is bad. Mine had several pinholes in it that were evident when I removed it.
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Old 05-14-2009, 08:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VWandDodge View Post
You aren't always going to get steam or the smell if the heater core is bad. Mine had several pinholes in it that were evident when I removed it.
no arguement there, mine was losing coolant and a slow rate for quite some time before it started fogging the windows and smelling like it. when i got the old one out the evap case had a lot of coolant in it, and none ever got on the floor either. its all good with the new heater core now though.
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Old 05-14-2009, 09:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VWandDodge View Post
You aren't always going to get steam or the smell if the heater core is bad. Mine had several pinholes in it that were evident when I removed it.
Yeah, I got no warning sign. All of a sudden one day the driver side floor was completely soaked and then I knew what happened.

I simply bypassed the heater core for now. Will replace with a brass one, since I've heard their better than the aluminum, someone correct me if I'm wrong.
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Old 05-14-2009, 12:01 PM
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That is correct, get a brass one. And while you have the box open, replace the AC evap core too.(no matter what) I did my evap core 2 years ago and like an idiot I didn't replace the HC , less than a year later I now have the heat issue in the winter. I flushed it and used CLR, and it's a lot better now, BUT, how stupid it was not to do it.
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Old 05-14-2009, 03:40 PM
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mine has a smell when i use it, had started losing coolant but now its just the smell, i too have heard of the tilt - a - dash method and where can i find those guy,but really i would like to replace my heater core how long does it normaly take, no air tools. if i started friday night lets say.
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Old 05-15-2009, 12:14 PM
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mine was down for a couple weeks because i put a couple hours into it, slept, worked, slept, worked, went to work on it and it was raining, slept worked, went to work on it and it was like 15, slept, worked....... it was either too cold or raining. when i wasn't working. then we got a 2 day warm up and i got it done on the second day. with no help i'd say its about a 6-7 hour job. i tend to have to do everything by myself since i can't ever get an extra set of hands when i'm not working.

one thing that makes it a little easier is if your dash is falling apart and you just snap off all the broken pieces and slap a molded plastic cover on it after you get it back together.

and don't forget to unplug your battery, the broken nose from the passenger airbag would be a funny story for the forum, but not such a fun experience.
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Old 05-15-2009, 12:14 PM
 
 
 
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1500, bypass, coolant, core, dash, dodge, firewall, floorboard, gurgling, happen, heater, leaking, ram, sound, start, wet

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