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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Read everything I could find on the site and still am not clear on this. Can I remove the heater core from the passenger compartment after heater box is removed, or do I have to remove the transition assembly from engine side of firewall also? Thanks for any help
 

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To get the core out you only need to work on the engine side. Remove the hoses, unplug the wire for the heater motor, remove the entire blower assembly (its like three or four bolts and you will likely rip the rubber sleeve between the blower assembly and the air box so you will need a new sleeve). Knock the two retaining straps holding the air box up and remove them. The air box will come off but you might need a little persuasion depending on the amount of goop used to seal it. Retaining plate and heater core can now be removed. I think that is all of it.
 

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Dragsix provided good instructions.
I also had some difficulty removing the heater core and the flat retaining plate attached to it as a unit.
There's a brace or flange that strengthens the firewall that runs at an angle across the bottom outside corner of the heater core box.
It might be helpful to remove the flat retaining plate attached to the heater core (4 phillips screws?) and to remove that plate separately before trying to remove the heater core itself.
I did not try this myself, but I will when I get around to reassembling my '57.
There may be lots of dried on goop that obscures your work.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you gentlemen. Last winter I disassembled the heater from engine side, blower, what is called the transition, and the core retaining plate which I bent the heck out of as it was glued in with some black gunk. Did this so I could rebuild the control valve which was a success. I used sealer on reassembly so going to go through the same prying and bending to get retainer plate out. I know what you're thinking. Should have pulled the core and had it tested the first time. Any ideas on a source for a good replacement core, or should I have the radiator shop look at the original?
 

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The heater cores are pretty resilient to leaking, the control valve have had issues of leaking, if the system has not been over pressurized you should be fine, stock cap is 7 pounds pressure.
 

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If you have an accurate air pressure regulator / gauge you can test the core. If no cap / plug for 1 nipple rig heater hose, a pipe tee & nipples etc. add air pressure if no leaks are heard submerge the core in a bucket of water if no bubbles your good to go.
I scored a new 57 aluminum core from a vendor in FL, tested it @ 20# = ok.
Those of you with 7# systems you have a 7# system good luck.
Suggest 3M strip calk as a sealer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
If you have an accurate air pressure regulator / gauge you can test the core. If no cap / plug for 1 nipple rig heater hose, a pipe tee & nipples etc. add air pressure if no leaks are heard submerge the core in a bucket of water if no bubbles your good to go.
I scored a new 57 aluminum core from a vendor in FL, tested it @ 20# = ok.
Those of you with 7# systems you have a 7# system good luck.
Suggest 3M strip calk as a sealer.
Thanks Churchkey, but don't understand your reference to 7# system and "good luck". Do you mean because of low pressure the core would be difficult to pressure test at home? Is there an inherent problem with a 7# system?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
The heater cores are pretty resilient to leaking, the control valve have had issues of leaking, if the system has not been over pressurized you should be fine, stock cap is 7 pounds pressure.
I cleaned up the original control valve and had it pressure tested at the local radiator shop by a guy whose been there for 30 years. He said control valve was good, but maybe I should replace it to eliminate a future problem. Wanted to stay with capillary tube which is not used on replacements, but, maybe new valve is the safe way to go. Thanks for the help.
 

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I ordered a new heater core that didn't say whether it was made from aluminum or brass.
It arrived as aluminum, so I returned it and ordered one that was brass.
Aluminum is much more active than brass when it comes to corrosion, but maintaining proper coolant should prevent corrosion.
Perhaps I was being paranoid, but I've seen too many problems with aluminum in a previous life as a mechanic.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I ordered a new heater core that didn't say whether it was made from aluminum or brass.
It arrived as aluminum, so I returned it and ordered one that was brass.
Aluminum is much more active than brass when it comes to corrosion, but maintaining proper coolant should prevent corrosion.
Perhaps I was being paranoid, but I've seen too many problems with aluminum in a previous life as a
 

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I cleaned up the original control valve and had it pressure tested at the local radiator shop by a guy whose been there for 30 years. He said control valve was good, but maybe I should replace it to eliminate a future problem. Wanted to stay with capillary tube which is not used on replacements, but, maybe new valve is the safe way to go. Thanks for the help.
New valve is safe way to go. Heater will be fine without it. I had to replace my original and while I wanted to keep the capillary tube, in the end, it woks fine without it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
New valve is safe way to go. Heater will be fine without it. I had to replace my original and while I wanted to keep the capillary tube, in the end, it woks fine without it.
New valve it is. Thanks for your input Dragsix
 
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