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Old 01-19-2019, 10:54 AM   #1
Bigdutchmanbbq
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Default 2001 Heater Core inside connection

I replaced my heater core on my 2001 L Series. Getting the 2 connections back into the core is some what challenging. I was able to seat 1 of them and get the plastic clip on but still have issues with the 2nd one. I ordered the ACDelco brand so it was like for like. Any tricks or tips how to get these fitted would be greatly appreciated.

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Old 01-19-2019, 11:36 AM   #2
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Default Re: 2001 Heater Core inside connection

I'm not familiar with heater core replacement so I'm going by service manual guidelines. If you're describing the two plastic clamps that snap on to each heater core flange and extension pipe, a drawing and brief description are given and probably not helpful.

1-Slide the heater core into the HVAC module being careful not to damage the foam seals.Tighten the heater core retaining strap screw to 1.9 N∑m (9 lb in).
2-Install the bushings and O-rings onto the heater core pipes.
3-Install the heater pipes into the core and install the plastic clamps. The heater pipe clamps will only go on one way. The lower clamp hinge fits into the tab of the heater core retaining strap.


Other members with familiarity may offer better advice.
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Old 01-19-2019, 05:46 PM   #3
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Default Re: 2001 Heater Core inside connection

Here is a picture of the clamp Fdryer's diagram shows. The clamp shown with the red arrow is lifted to remove the fitting.

To lock, the tab locks down as shown.

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Old 01-19-2019, 05:57 PM   #4
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Default Re: 2001 Heater Core inside connection

Thanks for the replies. I know the concept just having problems lining the one up so it seats in further so I can get the plastic on.
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Old 01-19-2019, 08:41 PM   #5
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Default Re: 2001 Heater Core inside connection

^^I assume the o-rings you are trying to install are the correct size. If so you should slather some grease on the o-rings and the interfacing pipes before installing. Silicone grease such as 3M silicone paste is my personal favorite. It will not swell or deteriorate rubber.

A good o-ring seal is maintained by a slight amount of o-ring pressure on the outside diameter pipe (the aluminum pipe) and the inside diameter (the heater core entrance). Grease allows the tight fitting o-ring to slide in easier to provide a good leak proof seal. The purpose of the clamp as shown above keeps the pipes secured in the heater core so they will not move or pop out.
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Old 01-19-2019, 08:47 PM   #6
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Default Re: 2001 Heater Core inside connection

Understood. I would try some silicone lube on the inside of the clamp and see if that helps lock it down.

Only other option I can think of is to LIGHTLY sand the inside of the clamp.

The new core may have slightly thicker flanges.

One of the suggestions above should work.

Keep us posted.
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Old 01-20-2019, 10:07 AM   #7
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Default Re: 2001 Heater Core inside connection

I did this years ago and remember having the same problem. I don't remember doing anything special to get it on, just working at it til it was done.
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Old 01-20-2019, 05:04 PM   #8
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Default Re: 2001 Heater Core inside connection

Iím throwing the towel in. Can I drive the car 1 mike to the shop or will I get antifreeze everywhere?
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Old 01-20-2019, 06:42 PM   #9
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Default Re: 2001 Heater Core inside connection

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigdutchmanbbq View Post
Iím throwing the towel in. Can I drive the car 1 mike to the shop or will I get antifreeze everywhere?
^^^ Don't even think about it! That connection will leak and make a large mess inside the car. If you are really throwing in the towel and want to drive it to a shop do this:

Go get a long section of heater hose. 3/4" dia. Will need to bypass the heater core entirely to make it possible to drive the car. You are just making a loop of hose back to the engine.

Simply place one end of the hose on the engine heater hose fitting and the other to the other engine heater hose fitting. Secure the hoses with worm clamps.

Will need a 3' section so that you have gentle loop and not kink the hose. Then study how to suspend the hose using zip ties or similar to keep it from contacting the exhaust or the steering assembly.

You might just sleep on it before you decide how to proceed. GregS&L's suggestion to making sure you have the correct O-ring is very valid. If the O-ring is too thick, it will not allow the clamp to close properly.

Danco # 15 O-rings which are actually plumbing O-rings have worked well for many members. Lowes or Home Depot have them.

Sorry to hear about your situation. You'll figure it out.

Keep us posted.
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Old 05-05-2019, 09:24 AM   #10
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Default Re: 2001 Heater Core inside connection

I used a wire tie to secure the clip on My wife's 02 L200 Sedan. Seems to have worked but my helper had a front ender with the car, and I'm not thru repair so the trial period has been suspended.
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Old 05-05-2019, 10:12 PM   #11
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Default Re: 2001 Heater Core inside connection

hi Saturn sages who have done this annoying fitment job. years ago there was a surprise leakage on my front passenger floor of antifreeze. after cleanup I followed the instructions in the Haynes manual . dealers and shysters wanted a fortune to do this. said to hell with them. problem was the o rings shrink and lose the seal. the key to this job is getting the exact o rings and a little bit of the silicon grease to slide and press fit them together. understand the danco #15 rings will work. actually a poster here sent me a few originals he had and they are still working. was about 10 or 11 years ago. if you cant find the danco rings, post back to me here and ill see if I can give you a source. regards bob f
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