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Car Heater Repair

Tools and Supplies Needed

  • Flashlight
  • Screwdriver set
  • Protective gloves and eyewear

Begin with the vehicle on level ground, engine off (cold) in park with the emergency brake set.

Step 1 - A heater cannot operate unless the engine is full of coolant/antifreeze. If coolant level is low check the system for leaks.

Step 2 - The heater control air bend door is controlled by a electronic/vacuum/cable which can malfunction causing a problem. Check the door operation by moving the heat control from hot the cold while listening for moment inside the heater plenum. (Note: This works better with the engine off.)

Step 3 - Inspect heater system vacuum lines especially to the heater control valve. These vacuum leaks can cause the system to not function. If a hissing noise is present under the dash when the engine is running a vacuum leak exists and must be repaired to restore the heater functionality.

Step 4 - The heater control valve prevents the flow of coolant into the heater core during the air-conditioner function, occasionally this valve will stick not allowing hot coolant to flow, inspect the valve for movement while in operation.

Step 5 - Use a vacuum gauge to test various control tubes which are used to move blend door actuators, also use a hand held vacuum pump to test servo diaphragms by connecting to the vacuum port directly. If no vacuum is present, open the hood and inspect all small vacuum lines from the engine to the firewall and under the dash, this test can be used for the heater control valve as well.