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1987 - 1996 F150 & Larger F-Series Trucks 1987 - 1996 Ford F-150, F-250, F-350 and larger pickups - including the 1997 heavy-duty F250/F350+ trucks

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Old 03-10-2011, 11:49 AM
perryau1996 perryau1996 is offline
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1996 heater core replacement

I have a 1996 with the 5.8. The heater core is leaking into the cab a little. I want to replace myself. I've read on this forum that some people say it's very easy. My mechanic says he will have to take the dash off. He says he will have to disharge the ac and it will be at least $350. Is the 96 different than previous years or should this be very easy?
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Old 03-10-2011, 11:53 AM
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He's bull****ting you. I'd find a new mechanic, or if you are at all mechanically inclined, it is very easy to replace.
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Old 03-10-2011, 11:58 AM
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I just did my 92. Not hard to do. You pull out the glove box and it is behind it I did not have to remove the dash. Took me about 45 min. 1/4'' and 9/32 sockets did mine. You really should get a manual it will save you a bunch of money. While your at it you may want to replace the heater hoses.
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Old 03-10-2011, 12:07 PM
perryau1996 perryau1996 is offline
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Thanks for the reply....I've changed a core in the 91 i used to have. It was easy enough, just thought the 96 may be different since he said that. Thanks
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Old 03-10-2011, 06:04 PM
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Roger T. Pipe Roger T. Pipe is offline
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This is probably one of the easiest jobs to do on our gen trucks. Try to tackle this yourself-you'll find it pretty simple and you'll save yourself 350 beans to boot!
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Old 03-10-2011, 10:42 PM
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I'll join the concensus- it's so easy you'll think you did something wrong.

Your mechanic is a pirate. Shove his nose in that lie about discharging the AC. Ask him to show you exactly why. It'll be funny to see how he could possibly explain that. Then, do you neigbors a favor and hook him up on yelp.com with the review that he deserves so nobody else trusts him for anything.

There's a chance he's just simply mistaken, but without an apology I'd have fun with it. Be creative. I hate pirates.
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Old 03-10-2011, 11:06 PM
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really that easy? In my 96 f150 my heat is not as hot as it should be. should i go ahead and do it myself?
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Old 03-10-2011, 11:18 PM
drjoe171 drjoe171 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cadillacmob View Post
really that easy? In my 96 f150 my heat is not as hot as it should be. should i go ahead and do it myself?
Well?

Worst case is you don't get it finished before 'dark'.

What I would do, knowing my luck sometimes, is have a piece of
tubing to connect the heater hose lines together if I couldn't finish the job for some reason and still be able to drive it.

Heck, you might be able to plug the lines off with a couple spark plugs or something.
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Old 03-11-2011, 02:40 AM
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I did mine in under a half an hour start to finish. Easiest one I have ever done.
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Old 03-11-2011, 03:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cadillacmob View Post
really that easy? In my 96 f150 my heat is not as hot as it should be. should i go ahead and do it myself?
I'd go for it, no reason to outsource it to a shop unless you feel uncomfortable with it for some reason, but even then it won't cost you no $350. About yer mechanic tho, I'd give him the benefit of the doubt and venture to say tis just he's never tackled that job on a truck of that body style - in many vehicles you do indeed have to either pull the dash apart or get the plenum out the front or both (at which point you gotta discharge the A/C and then recharge it after everything's back together), and if he primarily gets to work on such vehicles and trucks like yours rarely come in the shop I'd say tis fully possible he was giving ya the worst-case scenario based on his experience so far. Remember there are still lotsa honest mechanics, we ain't all out to get ya'll and yer hard-earned moneys...

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Originally Posted by hav24wheel View Post
I did mine in under a half an hour start to finish. Easiest one I have ever done.
26 minutes is what I clocked myself at IIRC, still couldn't beat my OOBS non-A/C Chevy time, lol. But yah, you end up spending more time taking the hoses off the old core than it takes you to actually swap the cores.
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Old 03-11-2011, 03:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LCAM-01XA View Post


26 minutes is what I clocked myself at IIRC, still couldn't beat my OOBS non-A/C Chevy time, lol. But yah, you end up spending more time taking the hoses off the old core than it takes you to actually swap the cores.
Before I did the core in my 94, the last one I did was in a 96 or so Dodge pickup.

That's one of those pita ones that half the dash has to come out. But I got away without splitting the heater box by cutting the heater hose tubes off the old core, and uncrimping the tubes on the new core, sliding the core into place, and recrimping the tubes back on after feeding them through the Firewall and into the core. Thank god for O ring sealed tubes. Saved a lot of time.
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Old 03-11-2011, 06:58 AM
perryau1996 perryau1996 is offline
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My mechanic ain't so bad after all. He thought I said 97 model when I talked to him on the phone. He said 96 is a peice of cake like the 91 I had. Thanks
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Old 03-11-2011, 07:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hav24wheel View Post
Before I did the core in my 94, the last one I did was in a 96 or so Dodge pickup.
Oh, one of those... I like that body style, but just about everywhere I hear they're a royal pain to work on... Thankfully I usually end up with driveline and suspension work on them and that's just regular annoyance, nothing too bad.

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My mechanic ain't so bad after all. He thought I said 97 model when I talked to him on the phone. He said 96 is a peice of cake like the 91 I had. Thanks
See, I told ya he wasn't digging for gold in your pockets
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Old 03-11-2011, 07:17 AM
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