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Old March 24th, 2013, 16:10
jeepingben jeepingben is offline
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Changing evaporator core - thinking of reusing heater core

I removed the heater box from my 2000 XJ today and found that indeed, the evaporator was the source of my AC leak. The styrofoam tray under the evaporator absorbed the leaked dye so I never saw it.

I had planned to replace the heater core as part of this job, but I started reading about the aftermarket options and I think I might keep my non-leaking copper unit instead of putting in a Chinese aluminum unit. $400 for an OEM heater core is not an option since this jeep probably only has 1 or 2 years left before the rust kills it.

Am I crazy?

Last edited by jeepingben; March 24th, 2013 at 16:11. Reason: Accidentally a word in the first sentence
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Old March 24th, 2013, 21:50
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Ecomike Ecomike is offline
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Re: Changing evaporator core - thinking of reusing heater core

I would stick with copper and quality. Depends on what the old one looks like when you pull it? Why fix the A/C if the rust is that bad?
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Old March 25th, 2013, 04:52
jeepingben jeepingben is offline
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Re: Changing evaporator core - thinking of reusing heater core

I looked over the old heater core indoors under good light. I can't see anything wrong with it so I'll keep it.

The rust isn't so bad now. I cut off the rear quarter panels and replaced the rockers. I will need to get bigger fender flares soon to cover the area just above the current flares. There is rust starting in places that will be harder to fix. The jeep spent 2 years parked on a dock over the ocean which really sped up the rot.

$200 in parts and a weekend seems worth it to have AC for a year or two, especially for long interstate trips (did ME->South Dakota 2 years ago, ME->Moab last year, ME->Smokies this year).
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Old March 28th, 2013, 06:22
MAY POP MAY POP is offline
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Re: Changing evaporator core - thinking of reusing heater core

Under 75 for the core makes it a no brainer as change or not to change. Not worth taking the dash apart a second time.
Just my 2 cents.
Ron
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Old March 29th, 2013, 08:55
anthrax323 anthrax323 is offline
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Re: Changing evaporator core - thinking of reusing heater core

I ran into the same dilemma... I ended up trying 6 (yes, 6) different heater cores from CarQuest, NAPA, AutoZone, Advance, Rock Auto, and somewhere else I can't recall, but none of them even came close to fitting. It would've taken some significant bending to make any of them fit, and I was afraid that doing so would compromise the new unit. All but one were aluminum (one was actually copper like the OE unit).

So, I just flushed my original core and found no signs of corrosion, and reinstalled it. Couldn't justify spending another $400 for the proper OE part. This was 20,000 miles ago and it's still working perfectly (195k on the clock total).
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Old March 29th, 2013, 09:18
DanMan2k06 DanMan2k06 is offline
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Re: Changing evaporator core - thinking of reusing heater core

^ I read anthrax's entire thread before doing mine. I too, was hesitant, but folde in the end and bought one anyway. The core and he evaporator were both spectra brand From rockauto. Both fir perfect and looked to be of decent quality. No issues whatsoever.
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Old March 29th, 2013, 17:28
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Re: Changing evaporator core - thinking of reusing heater core

give it a good flush, but assuming youve got working heat and no leaks from it, keep it
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