Q.My 1963 Chevy Nova is almost restored. New carpet was just installed. I replaced the heater core once and it leaked on the old carpet after 4 years of use. Is there any place that will repair old cores? Can’t have a supposedly new core leaking on new carpet.
There was a time when virtually every town had a shop dedicated to radiator repairs, and yes they would often do heater core repairs as well.
Over time the cost of replacement radiators has come down, so much so that in many cases it is much cheaper to buy new than to repair.
In doing a few quick internet searches for your car, it revealed heater cores were available in both aluminum and brass/copper, and could be had for as little as $30 and as much as $150.
There are times when no one makes a replacement heater core, in those events I would seek out a radiator repair shop that still makes radiator repairs, and they will have the skills and equipment to make the repair.
I recently had a radiator repaired, and while it took a few phone calls to find the right people to work on it, the reward was having a first rate job personally backed up by the shop owner with a promise and a handshake.
Because your car is so popular I would strongly recommend purchasing a complete new heater core. As repairs to your existing one will likely exceed the purchase price of a new one.
Looking for someone to rebuild my heater core. 1999 Dodge Ram 3500 diesel. The ones you buy from parts house or online aren’t worth a spit,if you know what I mean.
You probably received a cheap heater core from china, their Radiators are bad also, and so are the electronic ignition boxes modules for fords, some only lasting a few hours. Try to get a good quality unit, otherwise you will be changing this every few years. Otherwise go to a good radiator shop and ask them to make one for you.
Replace with a new one then use a 9 lb. radiator cap.
I agree, repair of the original is a much better option 99% of the time–they were built better & fit perfect -a lot of the aftermarket stuff is built Really cheap & doesn’t fit proper-
I have a 1960 Valiant with a leaking heater core. I have searched and searched to find a new/replacement, but I have had no luck. I do have a parts car and am hoping the core is good on that one. I do know that the core is bypassed so I am not sure that core will be any better than my leaking one in my driver. I hate to put some sort of “stop leak” in the radiator and hope it stops the leak in the heater.. and not plug up the cooling system.
Phil whetmore , if the core is bypassed on your parts car you can be certain it was leaking too and that’s the reason it was bypassed
DO NOT PUT STOP LEAK IN YOUR VEHICLE IT WILL PLUG UP THE HEATER CORE. !
I have a 58’ Impala which after 10 mins or so begins to blow steam on the windshield. Where is a good place to start? Can I fix it without replacing it?
Thank you fro your patience, here is the response from the expert:
I believe the problem is a leaking heater core or heater control valve, as It is not uncommon for either of them to fail.
Check the carpet and under the dash for wetness to discover the source of the leak.
They reproduce Heater cores for your car and are available from many online sources for about $200.
Likewise the new Heater Control Valves are about the same price.
You could pull heater core out, take it to an old school radiator shop and have them boil it out and repair it, but it will likely cost near the same with no guarantee it won’t start leaking again in a few months. Also the heater control valves are rebuildable but not easy to do so.
In a pinch, to stop the steam you could take the heater off-line and route a short piece of heater hose between the two connections on the engine.
This will keep you running and attending car shows / cruise nights until you source all the parts you need to make the repair.
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For my money if brass/copper is available that is what I would choose. I have seen a lot of aluminum ones suffer from electrolysis.
The guy at the radiator shop says you need to leak check a new heater core before you install it because of the high failure rate.
I definitely would
If you can’t find a heater core radiator shops (if any still exist) can repair them.
There are still some “Old School” radiator shops around, that can repair heater cores and radiators.
From my own experience radiator repair shops are getting harder to find but they’re out there.
Many “modern day” radiator shops, simply replace the heater cores and radiators with new ones and often even lack the equipment to make actual repair.
If they don’t have a new radiator or heater core for your application, you’re simply out of luck.
So if your find an actual radiator shop that can make repairs, be certain to support them so they’ll be there when you need them.
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Found a radiator repair shop in Petersburg, Va that repaired my 68 Chevelle radiator. Did an excellent job and much cheaper than a new one. Shop is Modern Radiator Repair and owner is Matt, very nice guy!
My son had a coolant leak in his 2000 Chevy Monte Carlo. No puddles to tell where the leak was, but the coolant level kept getting low. He put K-Seal into the cooling system and the leaking stopped.
Never ever put some stop leak product in your radiator. The stuff can’t tell the difference between a leak and the cooling tubes. You have about six months before the radiator is clogged.
Hopefully the leak is near the outside where you can get at it..if your on a budget clean the metal down to bare metal and use some bondo..I fixed a radiator that way after an accident and the fix is holding and its been 13 yrs now..
For a 99 Mustang six, which is better – aluminum or brass/copper?
You’ll find guys that will argue this all day long. For a heater core you should likely choose aluminum. It has excellent heat transfer and will resist corrosion.
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Oil dry works good to remove antifreeze from carpet.🇺🇸
Vintage air will take car of heater core problem it is included.
I installed Vintage Air in a 63 Nova I recommend them.
What did it cost? I am looking at adding air to my 65 GTO