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Leaking heater core - how bad is it?

Discussion in '1st Gen. Tacomas' started by sterls33, Dec 19, 2012.

  1. Dec 19, 2012 at 9:34 AM
    #1
    sterls33

    sterls33 [OP] Member

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    Sterling
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    My heater core is leaking and when i have it cranked it drips a small amount of coolant onto the passenger side flooring. It smells like dusty syrup when the heater is on, which I have been told is from the coolant getting into the ducting. It is very expensive for a new OEM heater core, and even more expensive for the labor to have it replaced. My question is how bad is this for my health, and is this doing more damage to my truck? The heater still works good enough to get by with, but I want to make sure I'm not causing myself or my passengers any health hazards.
     
  2. Dec 19, 2012 at 9:50 AM
    #2
    ALawrence

    ALawrence Well-Known Member

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    i had this 1980 Camaro... and the guy that had it before me had bypassed the heater core, it had leaked on the passagne side and it had actually rusted a hole on the passanger side before he bypassed it... the car ran like shit

    can you just bypass it?
     
  3. Dec 19, 2012 at 2:40 PM
    #3
    sterls33

    sterls33 [OP] Member

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    I've been told you can just by pass it, but then I have no heater at all.
     
  4. Dec 19, 2012 at 2:59 PM
    #4
    ALawrence

    ALawrence Well-Known Member

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    You live in california... you don't need heat
     
  5. Dec 19, 2012 at 3:07 PM
    #5
    sterls33

    sterls33 [OP] Member

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    Haha, that is true 90% of the time, but when I go up to the mountains to go snowboarding or get out of the water after a cold winter surf, it sure is nice to have some heat to thaw out to.

    I'm mainly concerned about if this leak is affecting my health at all.
     
  6. Dec 19, 2012 at 3:20 PM
    #6
    TrdSurgie

    TrdSurgie revised

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    Rear leaf spring tsb 5000 miles, w ac fan 26k miles, windshield creaking 28k miles- not warranty. Bad upper idler pulleys 32k miles- not warranty, Toyota Quality!
    Coolent is poision. Youre breathing it in. Will it hurt you on the short term. Probably not. Long term? I dont know. Just bypass the heater core or pull on from the scrap yard. Or maybe if youre lucky, it might be only be a loose connection.
     
  7. Dec 20, 2012 at 7:31 AM
    #7
    sterls33

    sterls33 [OP] Member

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    Thanks
     
  8. Dec 20, 2012 at 9:22 AM
    #8
    BamaToy1997

    BamaToy1997 ASE Master Tech Vendor

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    I would suggest in repairing the leak. get a replacement and fix it right. As you mentioned, you want to have the heater sometimes. Putting it off DOES put you and yours at a health risk. Coolant is a chemical, and chemicals are not always good for you. Not sure about short term or long term, but either way, why take the risk?
     
  9. Dec 20, 2012 at 10:43 AM
    #9
    skytower

    skytower Well-Known Member

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    Get the book. and do it yourself. It's not that hard, just time consuming.
     
  10. Dec 21, 2012 at 7:10 AM
    #10
    sterls33

    sterls33 [OP] Member

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    do you know if anyone has posted a tutorial on here or anywhere else for changing out the heater core?
     
  11. Dec 21, 2012 at 7:19 AM
    #11
    MadMtnMikey

    MadMtnMikey Well-Known Member

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    Aside from possible respiratory issues from breathing in the vapors of it... Eventually you're going to lose enough coolant to start overheating, unless you check the level regularly... And wherever the coolant is going to is going to start rusting and rotting..... Don't be dumb or overly cheap and lazy, bypass it temporarily if you have to, until you can get a new or used one and install it yourself.
     
  12. Dec 21, 2012 at 7:20 AM
    #12
    bozotaco

    bozotaco Well-Known Member

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    I drove a 93 Chevy pickup for 7 months. Bought it for 300 bucks and sold it for 350. It leaked a ridiculous amount of coolant on the passenger side floor. I made sure to drive with the windows down all the time. The stuff smelled, and sometimes seemed like a vapor/gas was emitting from it. I def wouldn't drive with that going on for a while. However I was also smoking cigs at the time, so I probably wasn't that worried about my health at the time. Good luck
     
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