Heater core box help

Discussion in 'The Big Chill' started by StfSocal, May 22, 2019.

  1. StfSocal

    StfSocal Well-Known Member

    Ya that is plan at this point. The one thing I would out was that the distribution duct was missing, so I will need to source a new one. Also going to get new ducts, the corrugated ducts, that connect the vents the the distribution duct.
  2. StfSocal

    StfSocal Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the info Mike!

    I'll give them a ring to see what they can recommend in my area, I moved from UTC/La Jolla area up to Fallbrook so I am trying to keep it around Escondido/Temecula. Makes it easier since I work in RB.
  3. StfSocal

    StfSocal Well-Known Member

    I also tested the vacuum actuators that are attached to the heater box and all seemed to work as intended. They each held 20" of vacuum for 15 minutes without any drop. Should I still replace them since the box is out?
  4. StfSocal

    StfSocal Well-Known Member

    Here is the part of the heater box I am referencing and need help on in regards to seal placement.

    Attached Files:

  5. StfSocal

    StfSocal Well-Known Member

    Anybody have experience with the heater core box and what seals go where?
  6. 87GN_70GS

    87GN_70GS Well-Known Member

    Benny Sanchez of Factory Auto Air would know. He rebuilds and restores these. He did mine
  7. StfSocal

    StfSocal Well-Known Member

    Unfortunately i haven't heard hide nor hair from him. Hope he is doing good. He went thru all my AC components and did a remarkable job. He is the go to when it comes to these HVAC systems.
  8. StfSocal

    StfSocal Well-Known Member

    Got ahold of Benny via BookFace. Got the answers i needed in regards to the seals. Wouldn't it be nice if they just put in one page instructions with the things??? :mad:

    Anyways, having a bear of a time finding a local radiator shop that will recore an old heater core. Since mine is obviously compromised, it will need to be recored or replaced. If i have to go aftermarket, what is the best option out there that has been the least amount of hassle?

    Again car is factory AC with a 455.


    87GN_70GS likes this.
  9. copperheadgs1

    copperheadgs1 copperheadgs1

    I know Brett had his cored but he is in Mass. I think all the aftermarkets are Mexico or China specials. I find the nozzles on them suck and are leak prone.
  10. copperheadgs1

    copperheadgs1 copperheadgs1

    also I don’t every remember any seals on a factory car AC or otherwise. Strip caulk type material is what I have found. You can double or triple up on it as well.
    Brett Slater likes this.
  11. Brett Slater

    Brett Slater Super Moderator Staff Member

    I paid around $180 ish to get mine done and turnaround was about a week.

    My shop used the good Maine core and if you wanted to send yours to me, I could drop it off for him.

    I don't know how cost effective that would be to you but you can't beat OEM fitment.

    I understand if the total price with shipping might scare you. Let me know.
  12. StfSocal

    StfSocal Well-Known Member

    Well i pulled 17 radiator shops phone numbers yesterday and went thru one by one after work. 4 stated they recore radiators still, 2 of those said they could probably do heater cores, the other 2 said no problem. So at least i have two options in San Diego lol. Dropping it off today.

    The seals seem to be on certain parts of the internals of the heater box, most spots i will use a sealant of sorts. I also have the strip caulk for box to firewall sealing.
  13. StfSocal

    StfSocal Well-Known Member

    Thanks Brett!

    Right now I am looking at a minimum of $225 for either of the 2 shops here. No idea what brand recore they use. I will check shipping rates and let you know if that is the route i will take.
  14. Brett Slater

    Brett Slater Super Moderator Staff Member

    Sounds like it may be around the same amount to send it up here to me. Just make sure they use the good Maine cores. I posted pictures earlier in this thread.

    Before I had mine done, I posed the question of approximate cost to have one done and the number that kept coming up was $300.

    The way I see it, I'm ahead of the game.
  15. '72 Skylark Custom 4bbl

    '72 Skylark Custom 4bbl Well-Known Member

    I just got my core re-cored from a one man shop here in CO. Cost about $230ish for a U.S.A. core out of PA.

    Compared to other cores was heavier. Did a leak test before I left & all looked good. Cleaned up the whole heater box unit, all ducts(A/C car), replaced old insulation with EZ Cool mat, some duct seal on the box, & it's back in. Haven't run yet a I'm in the process of a motor swap.

  16. StfSocal

    StfSocal Well-Known Member

    Well I should be getting back around to this project this weekend. Had a few business trips and haven't been home. Plus being up in the ol' "metal cylinder germ" factory left me with a good cold over the past week.

    I got my core back and you won't believe how f***ed up it is....I will post pictures later. I should be able to salvage the heater core since I have no other option at this point. Basically it works great but the "core" is substantially thinner than the OEM piece. As such sealing it is going to be a chore. What irritated me the most was that I talked to this shop for quite a while about what I wanted done. They assured me that it will be identical to what was OEM. I specifically asked about the measurements and they said the ordered it exactly to what was in there. Well I guess not since the length and width are the same, but the depth is not. So freaking frustrating......
  17. StfSocal

    StfSocal Well-Known Member

    Here is the heater core that I got back...

    Attached Files:

  18. Brett Slater

    Brett Slater Super Moderator Staff Member

    Good Lord!

    Which radiator company did they use??
  19. StfSocal

    StfSocal Well-Known Member

    No idea, unfortunately I did not advise them I want a Maine core (as I dropped it off the same day that was posted)as they indicated that their core supplier could make a core for this application. What annoys me is that i asked if the measurements would match exactly and was told yes. I would assume that one of those measurements would be the thickness....

    Anyways, my plans to salvage this are as follows (see attached pic).
    I have some then flat steel that i can cut to "cap" the ends (circled in red)
    Then apply some quality high temp sealant to the areas with black lines.
    This would then force the air to pass thru the core versus possible around the sides since it is too thin.

    In all likelihood, I will probably never use the heater. It doesn't ever get that cold in San Diego (maybe in the low 40s?). However, I would like it to be functional if the need arises, but more importantly, NOT LEAK lol.

    Thoughts? Otherwise I buy a new heater core from SS396.com and hope it fits and doesn't leak.

    Attached Files:

  20. Brett Slater

    Brett Slater Super Moderator Staff Member

    This is ridiculous. Sorry you got shafted like this.

    What radiator guy in his right mind thinks that's sufficient? It's not like he didn't see what it looked like when you dropped it off.

    If I were you, I'd show him a picture of mine and have him do it correctly - and on his dime/time. That's totally unacceptable.

    That said, I'd put that on the shelf and just get one from Gound Up. That's never going to seal in the heater box without a ton of work.

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