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Old 11-24-2007, 09:25 PM   #1
Fish_N_Russ
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Default Dodge Dakota--Heater Core Replacement ??s

Anyone ever replaced their heater core on their Dakota?
My wife's 2000 crapped out this past week......belching anti-freeze/water down the gas pedal and blowing out mist when the heater is on high. We really dont have the funds right now to go to mechanic if we (meaning me ) can get the part at Napa and replace it myself.......any ideas?

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Old 11-24-2007, 09:35 PM   #2
bait dunker
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Smile Re: Dodge Dakota--Heater Core Replacement ??s

you can buy one at napa, just dont buy the cheapest one you can find. the whole dash has to come out on a dakota, steering column has to come down etc. its not fun if its your first time doing it. also use a product like napa cool to keep electrolosis down in your cooling system. good luck!
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Old 11-24-2007, 09:45 PM   #3
Don Becker
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Default Re: Dodge Dakota--Heater Core Replacement ??s

'Wrong time of the year but, if $ and willingness to go that far into the dash is a problem . . . temporarily, you could bypass the heater at the firewall. 'Not going to be fun w/no heater and no defroster - - but, 'might get you by til you can get it done. Don
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Old 11-24-2007, 09:59 PM   #4
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Default Re: Dodge Dakota--Heater Core Replacement ??s

hmmmmm whole dash out eh.......ewwwwl
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Old 11-24-2007, 10:04 PM   #5
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Default Re: Dodge Dakota--Heater Core Replacement ??s

I did one on my 1994 Dakota. Not fun, but do-able. Shop manual helps immensely!

Didn't have to take the whole dash out, but a few components of the dash, like the ashtray, etc...
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Old 11-24-2007, 10:18 PM   #6
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Default Re: Dodge Dakota--Heater Core Replacement ??s

I looked at all data online for instructions for your car. According to the manual the dash does need to be pulled. They show the flat rate time at 5.3 hours for vehicles with a/c. If you were in the area I would recommend macs radiators for purchasing the heater core. They have the lowest prices for radiators, heater cores, etc. One thing you might try is using a coolant sealer called alumaseal. Its a silver powder that comes in a small tube. I have seen it seal coolant leaks in cylinder heads and blocks. Napa should carry it. There are alot of sealer products out there but alumaseal is the only one I recommend. Follow the instructions on the tube when adding it and make sure to turn the heater controls to full heat to allow the alumaseal to circulate into the heater core. For 4 bucks it is worth a shot. good luck
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Old 11-25-2007, 07:36 AM   #7
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Smile Re: Dodge Dakota--Heater Core Replacement ??s

DO NOT, I REPEAT DO NOT, use a cooling system sealer! for one its like putting a bandaid on a bullethole, it might help for a bit but it doesnt fix it. second, you are adding something to your cooling systm that is designed to PLUG UP small openings. the cores in your radiator are small tubes, and quite often will also plug up from sealers. i have seen way too often needing to replace the radiator after using sealers, and power flushes didnt clear the tubes. todays radiators are plastic and aluminum so repair usually isnt an option. and they are usually quite expensive considering what your getting. this is free professional advice, worth every penny you paid:tongue:
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Old 11-25-2007, 12:33 PM   #8
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Default Re: Dodge Dakota--Heater Core Replacement ??s

Quote:
Originally Posted by bait dunker View Post
DO NOT, I REPEAT DO NOT, use a cooling system sealer! for one its like putting a bandaid on a bullethole, it might help for a bit but it doesnt fix it. second, you are adding something to your cooling systm that is designed to PLUG UP small openings. the cores in your radiator are small tubes, and quite often will also plug up from sealers. i have seen way too often needing to replace the radiator after using sealers, and power flushes didnt clear the tubes. todays radiators are plastic and aluminum so repair usually isnt an option. and they are usually quite expensive considering what your getting. this is free professional advice, worth every penny you paid:tongue:

What he said. DO NOT USE SEALERS.

I am, today, replacing the core in our Blazer because some idgit that owned the car before used it.
Oh yeah, I forgot, thermostat and radiator. That crap is everywhere.
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Old 11-25-2007, 01:00 PM   #9
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Default Re: Dodge Dakota--Heater Core Replacement ??s

same thing happend with my gf 1999 dakota. had it reapaired she bought it used at a car lot and paid for a warenty so they paid for the reapair but it was still about a push. wonder if dodge fixed the problem. good luck
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Old 11-25-2007, 06:31 PM   #10
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Default Re: Dodge Dakota--Heater Core Replacement ??s

As I stated, the only sealer that I recommend is alumaseal. In the past I have never been one for using coolant sealers. I worked at a dealerership and the auto manufacturer recommended using alumaseal for porous castings on engine blocks and cyl. heads. If the manufacturer and its engineers are ok with this product then I am at least open minded about it. Yes, I am of the opinion that replacing the heater core is the best option. Using a sealer should not be considered a long term fix. No, I do not agree that using this product will plug your radiator and thermostat and cause your headgaskets to blow. I am sure other sealers may cause problems that is why this is the only product that I have tried and can endorse. I have been in the repair industry for 20 years and this is my opinion.
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Old 11-25-2007, 07:12 PM   #11
Fish_N_Russ
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Default Re: Dodge Dakota--Heater Core Replacement ??s

well I appreciate all input, so thanks djb regardless

Im taking it down to the local garage tomorrow and see what the cost is going to be. The sealer might be an option after that lol
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