Author Topic: '69 Camaro SS convertible heater core replacement  (Read 2125 times)

Randy Shanks

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'69 Camaro SS convertible heater core replacement
« on: December 01, 2017, 01:42:45 AM »
I have a 69 SS 396 convertible that I bought new ( ordered from local dealer ).
Hugger Orange w/ white top and interior. As you may realize this car is part of my family.
I seems the heater core has developed a leak.
Any advice on the best approach to replace it. Can I get to it from the inside to avoid removing the inner fender and fender?
Any help would be appreciated.
Randy
1969 Camaro, SS 396, 4 speed, convertible, Hugger Orange w/ white top and interior.
Bought New in summer 1969

69Z28-RS

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Re: '69 Camaro SS convertible heater core replacement
« Reply #1 on: December 01, 2017, 04:44:40 AM »
Personally, I would remove the fender if that proved necessary (not as difficult as you might expect), but rather than 'replace' the heater core, you can take it to a radiator shop and get it repaired...  As original as your 'one owner' Camaro must be, it would be the 'right thing to do'..  :)

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KevinW

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Re: '69 Camaro SS convertible heater core replacement
« Reply #2 on: December 01, 2017, 12:28:57 PM »
Randy, Congrats on knowing what to purchase way back in 69!

So having done this on a freshly painted SBC Camaro, it is not that difficult, just time consuming and you will be cussing!

I assume you do not have A/C, that is a WHOLE other procedure!

The core is in the heater box, which is inside the car. The bolts protrude into the engine bay and come out around the fan air box. It should be possible to remove the nuts (and core inlet gasket) from the engine bay side and get the heater box out, since the BBC heater hose inlets come straight out. If you have a console you will be fighting with getting the box out around the console.  The console and heater control lines will hold you back.

If I were you, I would remove the heater lines 1st (removing the glove box, makes it easier & label them!), maybe the console too before attempting the heater box removal.

Then you should be able to get it out the heater box.  The core is clipped in, remove the screws, then the core should come out.  The core should be fixable (its just a little radiator). What I did was bought a repro core and had them replace the end cap and save the Harrison logo. I think they may be dated too.

Now is a good time to look at the seals in the heater box to see if they have deteriorated. Good Luck!

Removing the fan and fan airbox would require the hood and fender to come off :)

Sauron327

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Re: '69 Camaro SS convertible heater core replacement
« Reply #3 on: December 01, 2017, 01:07:47 PM »
I have Glen-Ray re-core my radiators and heater cores. A real radiator shop has cores in stock. No need to buy a repro core to swap your Harrison caps over to it.
Radiator shops are not as common as they used to be. And some of the old ones still around are not as qualified as you would think. I went through two butcher shops before I found one I could trust. Like Kevin said, no reason to remove the fender.

WorkinProgress

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Re: '69 Camaro SS convertible heater core replacement
« Reply #4 on: December 01, 2017, 03:00:48 PM »
Randy,

If you chose to replace the heater core be sure to keep the original as they are stamped with a letter code for the month and the last digit of the year of manufacture on lower side of tank.

I just had my original Big Block heater core cleaned and pressure checked by a guy in Massachusetts. You can send yours out here if you cannot get it repaired locally.

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69z27z87

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Re: '69 Camaro SS convertible heater core replacement
« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2018, 05:56:26 PM »
After I re-assembled my car after a frame off resto... I found my heater core leaking... the inlet/outlet tubes got pushed around too much and leaked at the connection to the core. Even with the console in the car, I found it easier to drop the heater box from inside the car and remove the core. The only tricky part is the control cables attached to the box for the heater/defrost ducts....
1969 SS396 - L35, Z87 Daytona Yellow, Yellow Houndstooth, Black Vinyl top
1992 Z28 - LB9 Purple Haze, T-5WC, grey leather interior

Stingr69

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Re: '69 Camaro SS convertible heater core replacement
« Reply #6 on: January 10, 2018, 01:43:36 PM »
Unbolt the outer fender to inner fender bolts. Unbolt the lower rocker panel fender bolt. Push outer fender away and insert a piece of 2x4 to hold it open while you r&r the core. I had the water connections loaded up on brazing rod a lot to make it last a long time and it has not needed any attention in the last 30+ years. :)

Sauron327

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Re: '69 Camaro SS convertible heater core replacement
« Reply #7 on: January 12, 2018, 02:47:52 AM »
Unbolt the outer fender to inner fender bolts. Unbolt the lower rocker panel fender bolt. Push outer fender away and insert a piece of 2x4 to hold it open while you r&r the core. I had the water connections loaded up on brazing rod a lot to make it last a long time and it has not needed any attention in the last 30+ years. :)
The core cannot be removed from the engine bay side. Your procedure applies to blower motor R&I. Repairs are done with solder, not braze.

« Last Edit: January 12, 2018, 03:56:19 AM by Sauron327 »

Stingr69

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Re: '69 Camaro SS convertible heater core replacement
« Reply #8 on: January 12, 2018, 01:47:24 PM »
He needs to get the box off first.  Fasteners are on engine bay side.  How else would you do it? 

Sauron327

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Re: '69 Camaro SS convertible heater core replacement
« Reply #9 on: January 12, 2018, 03:42:29 PM »
He needs to get the box off first.  Fasteners are on engine bay side.  How else would you do it? 
The 5 nuts fastening the inner box are accessible from the engine bay. The sheetmetal screws near the blower motor only fasten the cover, and do not fasten the inner box. No reason to remove the sheetmetal screws, the cover, or pry the fender out.

Kelley W King

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Re: '69 Camaro SS convertible heater core replacement
« Reply #10 on: January 12, 2018, 04:49:47 PM »
You could do what someone did on one of my cars. Cut  hole in the inner fender, make sheetmetal  patch, spray undercoating, paint to match. We did not even notice until we pulled the front metal during resto.
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bertfam

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Re: '69 Camaro SS convertible heater core replacement
« Reply #11 on: January 12, 2018, 04:56:15 PM »
When in doubt, read the Chassis Service Manual!! In this case, start on page 1A-4 "AIR DISTRIBUTOR DUCT AND CORE - ALL VEHICLES (Fig 6)"

It has pictures and everything!!!

Ed
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Stingr69

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Re: '69 Camaro SS convertible heater core replacement
« Reply #12 on: January 12, 2018, 06:33:27 PM »
When in doubt, read the Chassis Service Manual!! In this case, start on page 1A-4 "AIR DISTRIBUTOR DUCT AND CORE - ALL VEHICLES (Fig 6)"

It has pictures and everything!!!

Ed


Yep, I know the "drill".  The manual says to destroy the inacessable stud and replace it with a modified replacement setup.  Your call.

bcmiller

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Re: '69 Camaro SS convertible heater core replacement
« Reply #13 on: January 12, 2018, 08:49:57 PM »
You could do what someone did on one of my cars. Cut  hole in the inner fender, make sheetmetal  patch, spray undercoating, paint to match. We did not even notice until we pulled the front metal during resto.

And that procedure was used on quite a few cars.
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