Alfa Romeo Forums banner
1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
784 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hello Alfa Gurus -

Started her up today to go for a spin and got anti freeze dripping on the gas pedal. Looks like I will need a new heater valve and/or heater core. I am not sure yet which one is the culprit. I am going to place an order for a new valve and heater core and just replace both: do these parts look right for my 1975 Spider (with no air conditioning). I will also change out both hoses as well while I am there. This sound like a lot of pain in the butt work. Lol....I might just drop it off with my mechanic and save myself a big headache.

White Light Font Automotive lighting Auto part



I also found these helpful directions from another thread:

Remove seat to lie on back
Remove the airduct on the side of heater box (2 small bolts) and slide off, out of the way.
Release hard cable to heater valve (make a visual how far this was set thru the little nibbins with the bolt, or take a photo so putting it back you get the adjustment right)...
(**putting this back is a pita, but can be done, as you have to line it up with one hand and slide the heater slide on the dash with the other....whilst you are contorted under the dash!)
put rags on the floor as you will still get some water coming out of the inlet pipe (the one you removed near the bleed valve)...or you could gently clamp this hose.

Be 1000% sure this hose is still good, not brittle/cracking, as this is the time to change it if it is!
lubricate the inlet hose just as it goes thru the bulkhead grommet in the engine bay....don't get lubricant all over the hose as you need to grab this hose and if its all slippery it makes things difficult (you will need to grab and slide this hose off/on the valve)

Undo hose clamp and 'just' slide off the hose from valve (catch water)....I say 'just' as you need to put it back....and alone it is not easy...if you have a helper that pushes from the engine compartment whilst you are under the dash, sure helps...I didn't...but lubricating the bulkhead grommet beforehand helps some if you are on your own, as I was.
now undo the two little nuts holding the valve to the heather and remove together with the rubber seal (seal tends to stick to heater, make sure you remove/replace it)...catch any coolant
Refit new valve with new seal and
Slide the inlet hose back on (remember the clamp, it might have fallen off) and tighten up
Now try to feed the hard wire(see** above!) through that tiny hole (remembering roughly where it was before, to fully open/close the valve) and tighten the little bolt....this is the worst part, tiny fiddly things to try to align...!

Test for proper full open/closing of valve.
Refit duct.
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
2,504 Posts
I went through that a few years back. I went to the trouble of replacing the heater core first, which is a lot worse than just the valve, to have a flood of antifreeze on my foot later that Fall. Try replacing just the valve, it's the usual culprit.

If you need it, Vicks has a valid heater core for $90. They listed it as a Spider part only, but it's the same. The straight heater hose can be purchased locally.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
784 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Great advice; I will swap out the valve first and see how it goes.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,879 Posts
Following.

I had the antifreeze leak on the driver floor on the first drive of the season.

I didn't want to lose any driving time in the short Canadian summer, so I bypassed the heater core, but this sounds like a good winter repair.

Please post some pics and tips and tricks of the valve replacement.

Thank you,

Vin
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
24,519 Posts
It's fiddly and awkward due to the valve's location but it's not really hard. The gasket almost always is deformed and the valve itself, plastic, is often bowed.
Andrew
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
2,504 Posts
It's worth considering the metal-body version of the valve, as supplied originally on 1750s.
It's "later" in relation with the original Giulia valve.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,660 Posts
Go with the metal valve and the linkage from your old valve for maximum stroke. If you have an air compressor, disconnect the hose at the water pump and quickly place a length of 1/2" heater hose in its place facing up to keep from losing antifreeze. At the hose up top going to the valve, blow air through it with the slider set to hot and you will get the antifreeze out of the core and hoses. You will have almost no mess in your car that way.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
784 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
↑ I like the aluminum one. I am going to order it and give a go. Thanks yvesmontreal.

Pantera928, regarding your suggestion for using the linkage from the old valve (for maximum stroke), is the old valve built differently than the new valve?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
784 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Looking under the dash, these two nuts are in a tough spot, but I was able to squeeze a small #10 wrench in there to loosen them up. FYI for anybody else doing this in the future.

Product Bicycle part Auto part Household hardware Circle
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,660 Posts
↑ I like the aluminum one. I am going to order it and give a go. Thanks yvesmontreal.

Pantera928, regarding your suggestion for using the linkage from the old valve (for maximum stroke), is the old valve built differently than the new valve?
THere is a slight difference that JimG explained to me a while back that causes the valve never to be completely closed nor completely open depending on how you adjust it. Send him a PM and he can probably explain it better.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
784 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Found this pic online: question - I see the cable that opens and closes the heater core flap (red arrow), does the hanging wire (blue arrow) connect to the valve to open and close it?
Bag Bumper Motor vehicle Automotive exterior Luggage and bags
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
2,504 Posts
The vertical rod you see on the left slides into a hole just where the tip of your blue arrow is. So the same cable moves the flap AND the valve lever,
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,660 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
784 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thank you everybody for chiming in. The new part is on order and now I feel like I can tackle this job myself.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
784 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I am happy to report that my 1975 Spider has a new aluminum heater valve. For me, this was a tough job, it took about 5 hours of fiddling with every tool I had in my arsenal to get this done. Also, I did it alone and didn't have anybody helping me. Removing the drivers front seat and laying upside down while looking up under the dash is tiring enough, but then I had to get up frequently to find the right tool for each step. I even put a socket at the end of an Allen wrench because the ratchet would not fit (this trick got me out of many jams in the past). The drips are gone and the heat is working splendidly. Thank you to all for chiming in. Very much appreciated.

Office supplies Gesture Finger Stonemason's hammer Audio equipment
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
2,504 Posts
Congratulations.

Yes, that was a fun job on my first Alfa when I was 18. That was 1977. And I'm 6'2''.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,660 Posts
Glad you got it sorted. The last one I did had a loose steering wheel so i removed it rather then the seat.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,879 Posts
Glad it all worked out. I too have the drip drip drip. I ordered my aluminum valve heater and do not look forward to the installation.

Thanks for the tip using the allen wrench.

Vin
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
784 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
A few more tips:
  1. Remove drivers seat to give yourself more room. (Some even remove the steering wheel, if you want even more room)
  2. Put down a thick blanket to make it more comfortable for your back when you lay down on the floor to get under the dash.
  3. Get a light that you can put on the floor (so both hands are free to work).
  4. Using a hose pinch plier to pinch the hose going into the firewall to reduce the amount of coolant from flowing in under the dash when you disconnect the valve (you can also use a vise-grips with some rubber sleeves/tape on them so the teeth do not cut into the hose)
  5. Get a small normal hose clamp so you can replace the "impossible to deal with" one under the dash connecting the hose to the valve.
Below are instructions I found from another thread: Note* the hardest part for me was the actuator rod. See what I wrote in red below)
  1. remove drivers seat, 6mm hex (allen)
  2. 2 front screws first then the 2 rear
  3. remove trim panel from drivers side of transmission hump, Phillips screwdriver
  4. remove two screws (might only be one, think I added one at some point in the past.)
  5. pull down to free from dash (it is flexible enough)
  6. pull straight back to free two hooks
  7. Place a towel as high as you can up under brake and accelerator pedals. ( you are going to lose a little coolant and if you drop any parts, you don't want them to go under the carpet. )
  8. clamp the heater hose under the hood, it goes across high on the firewall
  9. remove small duct from drivers side of heater core
  10. remove two 7mm bolts from duct (1/4 in ratchet with 2" extension)
  11. pull duct straight down
  12. pull free of rubber ducting
NOW YOU CAN SEE THE HEATER VALVE, look up the side of the heater core housing.
Remove heater valve from heater core
  1. remove two 10mm nuts with a combination wrench
  2. pull/push actuator bar straight toward drivers door, it will come free along with a small helical spring keeper. (I didn't do this step, instead I just loosed the screw and pulled the valve out from the actuator bar.
  3. loosen hose clamp (6mm nut driver)
  4. pull heater valve free
  5. flip hose clamp over so that you can tighten it from below later
  6. remove heater valve gasket ( you got a new one right ) mine was stuck pretty well took a while to get it free using a small screwdriver and needle nose pliers. Destroyed it in the process.
  7. mark actuator shaft with a sharpie and then transfer to new valve (you may need to use the old retaining screw assembly or drill out the hole.
  8. push the valve back into the heater hose (but don't tighten hose clamp)
  9. place new gasket on the studs of heater core
  10. put valve in place and get two 10mm nuts started
  11. flip valve over to get the actuator bar back into place, tighten the screw with your socket and flip it back into place (this for me was the hardest part)
  12. tighten two 10mm nuts on heater valve
  13. tighten hose clamp ( 6mm nut driver, or a small screwdriver if you have all day)
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,660 Posts
I still prefer blowing the coolant out of the heater core with air prior to taking anything apart. Very easy to remove both hoses and place a short length of 1/2" hose on the water pump to avoid losing too much coolant.
Then I only spill a few drops of coolant if that.
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Top