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Need instuctions on how to replace a heater core on a 97 buick skylark

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I just replaced the heater core on my 1997 Buick Skylark about a year ago after one of the tubes completely came off and leaked all the coolant out. It was a fairly strenuous task because I had to stand on my head under the dash to remove the cover. There were also two screws that were hard to see and get to. I actually broke the cover because I couldn't see the screws (if the cover doesn't come off without much force you have probably missed a screw). The first step is to drain the coolant from your car, if it hasn't already leaked out. Then climb under your car and remove the two hose clamps and hoses from the heater core where the tubes come through the firewall (this is almost directly in the center, side-to-side, of the car). Also while under the car remove the rubber drain boot that is connected to the cover that I mentioned above. Then climb in the car upside down so you can see under the dash. In the center of the car under the dash you will see a plastic air channel that goes down into the floor. Remove the screws from this channel (I can only remember two screws) and disconnect the air hoses at the top on either side. Then the air channel will fold in the middle and should come out pretty easily. Once this is removed the plastic panel that I broke is next to come out. There are at least two screws on each side and two in the center (there may be more than this but is has been too long to remember). The two screws in the center are way down low where the floor board meets the firewall. They are not easy to see or get at but with a little patience you can get them out. Once this cover is off, the heater core is accessible. There may or may not be a couple of screws holding the heater core in place, if there is remove them and pull the heater core out. You will have to pull the tubes through the firewall. The new heater core that I bought was redesigned with metal instead of plastic tubes and looks like a much better design. I had to twist the tubes around to get them to align with the holes in the firewall. Then just reverse these directions to reinstall. Hopefully by now you haven't passed out from all the blood pooling in your head :) Sorry, I don't have any pictures of the process. Hope this helps.

Posted on Sep 30, 2010


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