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Discussion Starter #1
I think there is a small coolant leak under my dash board. The carpet is a little damp there and you can smell the coolant. I also see a little coolant coming from the drain hole on the firewall side. How hard is it to take out the heater core and replace it on a 88? Is this a do it yourself job or one a pro should do? I did the head gaskets myself. And if I wanted to have a shop do it, what do you think is a good ball park cost on the fix.
 

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Cost would be the heater core if you do it yourself.
Autozone
Unit Price: $22.99
Core Value*: $0.00
Part No.: 398010
Weight: 3.25 lbs.
Warranty: LLT

Its not hard to get to, it is just kinda hard to work under the dash. I don't have the docs on the R&R of the core, maybe someone else does. If you did the head gasket, save yourself the money and do the core yourself too. IMO
 

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hahaha you got a couple days to pull your car apart? search the forums and there is a link to a guy that outlines everything you need to do to get to it in a tech article.
 

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oh, and a good side note. you may want to just bypass the sucker for now and deal with it later. you'll have to watch your cooling system more carefully, but it'll stop that leak on the inside of your car. also, get a carpet shampooer to clean your carpet, or else it'll smell very foul.
 

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I think book hours to do it are probably close to 8 hours, and it would probably take them almost that much time if they haven't done them frequently.

I have done one on my 81 Fairmont and 79 Zephyr, and 89 Cougar, and it is no fun at all. Dash has to come 99.9% out, with it being 18 years old, dash stuff is going to break.

I would do two sets of HGs on a 3.8 before another heater core, but if it needed done, I would do it. It is time consuming and tough to not break stuff.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I decided to have a shop do it. They are saying that they also need to disconnect the AC to do the heater core. Does this sound right? I have an 88 T-bird so it may be different then an MN12.
 

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I don't think I had to evacuate the AC and recharge it doing the heater core in my Zephyr or my Fairmont (which are fox bodied cars too).
 

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yeah, i think there is suppose to be some article by sir on bypassing having to let the a/c charge out. not sure though, i would do a search on it.
 

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I have completed this task in 5 hours on my 93LX. Im working on a write up on some shortcuts that I have found that really cut the time down on it.
 
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