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Help with heater box

1571 Views 7 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Bill S
Hi- I'm new to Alfa's and the BBS. I've been into Vintage Vespas for years and have a service and restoration shop in Los Angeles. My business partner got my wife and me into Alfa's I love them so far and I'm even planning to do a custom Alfa Romeo themed vespa (will keep you posted!)

My problem right now is that I cannot figure out for the life of me how to remove the heater box in my wife's 74 Alfa Spider. The heater fan motor is screeching like a cat in heat and works only intermittently, so I wanted to pull it apart and see what I could do to remedy the problem. I can't find any diagrams in my manual and wasn't able to find any online or here on the BBS. I've removed the clips on front and back, removed the manifolds that supply air to the dash vents and still can't get it out. Is anyone able to point me toward some diagrams or walk me through it?:confused:
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.. i found the easyest way is just remove the dash to hard, 2 wing nuts just above the heater box, and 2 screws/ bolts ( one one each size of the dash)lower end next to the doors,,one has lots of grounds on it( the driver side), just tkae notes on all the wires when you unplug them. taking the heater box out after you take out the dash is much easyer....after you take out the heaterbox, and take it apart to clean, drill a few holes in the bottom 4/5 mm holes willl work, this will allow any water to drain out.. and after you put it all togeather, get a section of screan( as in screan door mat.) and glue it tp the top of the heater box,this will help in not letting any leaves/twiggs. mice etc. from droping into your nice clean heater box.
The problem is that the fan motor sits at the bottom of the heater assembly. Any fluid, errant water from inside the car, leaks from the heater core, etc., finds its' way to the fan motor housing. The bearings rust up, then start to complain. They will eventually seize and the fan motor stops.

Without regard as to how you get the heater out, have the core tested for leaks at a local radiator shop. Also check the wiper area under the cowl in front of the windshield.
Heater cores are not like AC condensers/evaporators, where you need a shop to high pressure test with nitrogen/air. They can be tested for leaks with just a bicycle pump, as they rarely go over 30-35psi. Place the whole thing under water, pump with bicycle pump, and watch for bubbles. Then flush out well to be sure no large chunks of dirt are inside before you re connect.

Oil all the moving parts/levers contacting rubber/cable ends with liquid silicone and Qtip, for ease of operation once reconnected.
Rad shop is a must though, if you DO have a leak, and need re soldering......DIY is tricky....
Thanks all

Thanks for the advice- I guess I'm going to have to resort to taking the whole dash apart which is okay, because I recently installed a dash cap and didn't notice before it was too late that the vents needed to go in first. Now I can reinstall them from underneath. This car needs a lot of love, so I'm sure I'll find something else that needed repairing while I have everything in pieces.

..garylee.. you might find some wonderfull things in , around, you dash when it comes heaterbox when i removed it to repair..well i found some mouse hair( i think???)and asst.. other strange things..good luck.. but it is a rather easy repair...once you understand how it comes out.. you will be very suprised how easy it was..:):)
There are 4 nuts that tighten the top of the heater box to the bottom of the dash. I can usually get them off using a 1/4" socket set with extensions and swivels. The nut is 8mm but 5/16" also works if you don't have a metric 1/4" set. Seems to me that a couple of them are easier to remove with an 8mm combination wrench. Of course, the radiator needs to be drained and the hoses removed from the box if you haven't done that already.
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