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Author Topic: How Does the Heater in a Truck Work? Or Is my Heater Busted?  (Read 1707 times)

Outbreak

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How Does the Heater in a Truck Work? Or Is my Heater Busted?
« on: February 22, 2013, 02:53:15 AM »
I left work this evening to discover a good sheet of frost on my truck. Having just moved to a part of the world where water evidently freezes outside of my kitchen, I have no ice scraper. Haven't had a need for one in about 10 years. The defroster will take care of it.

So normally, to drive from the squadron to the gate takes maybe 4 mintues, by which time the truck is starting to put out warm air. I waited in the parking spot (couldn't see to move) for 15 min. The coolant temp heated up but it never pushed any warm air. It was blowing cold the whole time. I had to borrow a scraper. The cab didn't get even remotely warm air blowing for a good 5 min after I started driving.

Does the heater require motion? Is my heater going tango uniform after just 6 years and very light use during that time?
TexasOutbreak

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Re: How Does the Heater in a Truck Work? Or Is my Heater Busted?
« Reply #1 on: February 22, 2013, 04:41:51 AM »
It shouldn't require motion. Once the coolant temp is up, the heater core should be warm and the air should start warming, too. It started blowing warm air, though? That's weird. Would you say it eventually blew warm-enough air? Or was it still a little anemic?

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coelacanth

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Re: How Does the Heater in a Truck Work? Or Is my Heater Busted?
« Reply #2 on: February 22, 2013, 04:53:20 AM »
Until you get your heater/defroster sorted out, try filling a 2 liter soda bottle with warm tap water.  Pouring that over the windshield and turning your wipers on usually gets you going in about a minute or so.
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Lupinus

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Re: How Does the Heater in a Truck Work? Or Is my Heater Busted?
« Reply #3 on: February 22, 2013, 05:36:06 AM »
I don't think six years is enough to clog a heater core. How often do you actually use the heater? Coolant flows through a heater core heating it, and a blower motor than blows air over it and into the cab of the vehicle. Have you had the coolant system serviced at all? That might be the fairly simple fix. After six years, it's probably a good idea anyway.

As for motion, no it shouldn't require motion. It'll heat up faster since the engine will heat faster and the pump will move coolant faster.

If the heater core is truly plugged up and a coolant flush isn't enough, that's a world of fun.
South Carolina

Outbreak

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Re: How Does the Heater in a Truck Work? Or Is my Heater Busted?
« Reply #4 on: February 22, 2013, 05:54:53 AM »
Coolant temp was at normal operating temperature, still blowing cold air. It was running for about 20 min before I started driving and still took another 5 min or so to blow warm air.

Total it took about 30 min of engine running before I got where I normally get in 5 minutes of just start up and drive.

I'll look into the coolant flush but I definitely won't have time for that for at least 2 weeks.
TexasOutbreak

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Gunnguy

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Re: How Does the Heater in a Truck Work? Or Is my Heater Busted?
« Reply #5 on: February 22, 2013, 07:22:24 AM »
When was the last time you checked your antifreeze? If it was very weak or used up it could have frozen in your heater core and hoses to same. That would take a while to thaw. Thus the 30 minutes to warm air. The back flushing of the heater core and coolant flush should do the trick.
But I wouldn't rule out clogging as weak or dead coolant wont provide rust inhibition.


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Re: How Does the Heater in a Truck Work? Or Is my Heater Busted?
« Reply #6 on: February 22, 2013, 08:19:39 AM »
Was the little knob turned to the red portion of the dial? ;)


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Avenger29

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How Does the Heater in a Truck Work? Or Is my Heater Busted?
« Reply #7 on: February 22, 2013, 08:27:50 AM »
I had the exact same problem. It was trash/rust clogging up the heater core. Solution was to pull the two hoses off the heater core outlet/inlet, hook the garden hose up to one and a section of old garden hose to the other and run that into a bucket and use water to flush the core.

Worked like a charm and took 10 mins tops.

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sqlbullet

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Re: How Does the Heater in a Truck Work? Or Is my Heater Busted?
« Reply #8 on: February 22, 2013, 09:51:31 AM »
Gunnguy and Avenger have given good advice.  Especially after many years in a warm environment.  Have your cooling system serviced or do it yourself, including a good backflush and refill with properly mixed coolant for your climate.
Utah

Lupinus

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Re: Re: How Does the Heater in a Truck Work? Or Is my Heater Busted?
« Reply #9 on: February 22, 2013, 10:18:38 AM »
I had the exact same problem. It was trash/rust clogging up the heater core. Solution was to pull the two hoses off the heater core outlet/inlet, hook the garden hose up to one and a section of old garden hose to the other and run that into a bucket and use water to flush the core.

Worked like a charm and took 10 mins tops.
yes that would be the alternate method LOL.

And it does work well.

South Carolina

Caryn

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Re: How Does the Heater in a Truck Work? Or Is my Heater Busted?
« Reply #10 on: February 22, 2013, 12:31:15 PM »
Mine is old...and the wiring warn out, so my fantastic hubby rigged mine up on a toggle switch so my toes don't freeze off

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Re: How Does the Heater in a Truck Work? Or Is my Heater Busted?
« Reply #11 on: February 22, 2013, 02:41:39 PM »
Having not read the thread:

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How Does the Heater in a Truck Work?
Well, that depends upon what type you got...  Handgun?  Throw it in the glove box.  Rifle or shotgun?  A window rack looks cool, but a locked case is better.  Be sure to comply with all local laws!

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Or Is my Heater Busted?
What's it doing?  Youtube is your friend.  If you don't feel comfortable working on your own guns, take it to a gunsmith.  :)


Hope that helps!



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Re: How Does the Heater in a Truck Work? Or Is my Heater Busted?
« Reply #12 on: February 22, 2013, 04:15:37 PM »
Low coolant will cause those issues, too.
You probably checked, but I thought I'd throw it out there. 
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Re: How Does the Heater in a Truck Work? Or Is my Heater Busted?
« Reply #13 on: February 22, 2013, 04:19:56 PM »
Sometimes having a coolant system that's not properly bled can do it too.
Arizona


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Cookie

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Re: How Does the Heater in a Truck Work? Or Is my Heater Busted?
« Reply #14 on: February 22, 2013, 04:23:18 PM »
Low coolant will cause those issues, too.
You probably checked, but I thought I'd throw it out there. 

This. Also what Jesse said.

I doubt you have a serious problem with your radiator or heater core, given the age of your truck and the level of use it has seen. Double check your fluid level. If it's low, the temp gauge will still read properly but there won't be enough liquid to properly cycle through the heater core. My old pickup uses coolant and eventually does the exact same thing until topped off.
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