96 Crown Victoria Heat Core Problem?


Old 12-24-04, 08:15 AM
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96 Crown Victoria Heat Core Problem?


1996 Crown Victoria, 105,00miles, with a heating problem.

Problem: There is only heat being blowen when the fan is at lowest setting.
The higher the fan speed, the faster the air gets cooler.

Heater hoses, One is hotter the the other.

Now I have gotten quotes from $480 to 725 for core replacement. I do not not want to spend the money if the core is not the problem.

Last winter the problem only occured when fan was set at highest setting and it was real cold out. Radator flushed last season.

Recent history. Intake manifold replaced. Yes, one for the ends of the plastic manifold split. After this is when the heating problem really got bad.

1st. shop, one that did the intake manifold replacement, young mechanic.
Backed flushed core. Monitored engine temp (said no problem here). Said if heat did not get any better then the core would have to be replaced.

2nd. Shop, use this shop more often, Mechanic with 20yrs exp. Said 1. Unless the core leaked it should not need replacing. 2.there are several things to check first. Changed the thermostat ( I think this made it worse). Said my radator fan never stopped. Looked for a sensor in the normal places, and could not find it. Was going to check where it is suppose to be located.
Also said something could have happened to a gasket when the manifold was replaced.

Any help or suggestions would be appreicated.

Old 12-24-04, 09:27 AM
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: South Florida
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If you think about it, one of the hoses should be hotter than the other-the one bringing water into the heater core. The hose returning the water to the engine should be cooler because the air that the fan blows thru the core has picked up most of the heat the water returning to the engine has lost.
The only reasons to replace a heater core are if it is leaking or clogged up, either of which should be fairly obvious: water on the floor or no warm air at all. Check hoses as well.
Is there a setting to recirculate the air/use fresh air from outside? Recirculating the already warm air thru the heater will build heat quicker than using the icy-cold outside air. Also, have you checked for any leaks in the ductwork that might be letting cold air bypass the heater core or letting cold air in? Check the switch linkages to make sure they are operating properly.
The only other thing I can think of is if the engine isn't getting good and hot then you won't get really warm air from the heater. A bad thermostat could cause that; also a radiator that is too large for the engine could keep the heat below proper operating temp. But it looks like youv'e had pretty much everything checked out so I don't know.
Are you letting the engine get up to operating temp before turning on the heater? Is the radiator fan electric or driven by a fanbelt? If it's electric, it shouldn't be running all the time, especially when the engine is cold. You mention a lost sensor and damaged gasket. I would think either of those would cause an obvious leak that would be easy to spot. Those would only make the engine run hotter, though. Good luck.
Old 12-24-04, 11:21 AM
Join Date: Dec 2001
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both hoses should be hot to the touch so I would expect the heater core may be clogged you could try flushing it out again but it will likely need replaced.
the only other things to check would be coolant level to make sure it is full and check the thermostat to make sure the engine is getting up to temperature grab the upper hose should be hot on a warmed up vehicle even though the thermostat is new it could be faulty.

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