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I need to replacement the heater core on my 2010 JKU. I tried all the quick fixes- back flush, compressed air etc. and still get almost no heat out of driver side vents. Has anyone done the replacement by cutting the dash support and the inlet and outlet on the core. I found the video on line where the two guys do it this way and it looks pretty straight forward. If it comes down to removing the entire dash I guess I will be without heat for a long time.
 

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I absolutely hate to take shortcuts or hack something up. I also have a 2010 and had to replace my heater core. I did it the right way and I’ll be honest with you. If I had to do it again I would pay someone to steal and burn my Jeep before I did it a second time. Take a good long look at cutting dash supports and go for it. The alternative is hell!

And this is from someone who LS swapped his JK.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Not big on taking shortcuts or hacking either, but from some of the post I have seen I am beginning to think the LS swap might actually be easier than replacing the entire heater core.
 

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If I have to replace mine, I'll be doing the shortcut. 2010 2dr. On a side note, the 2010s aren't known for having plugged heater cores. Be sure to first check to see if all your blend doors are doing what they're supposed to and that you're actually getting hot water to your core. Maybe a heater valve has failed, but I don't know if there is one on JKs. Just saying...start with the easy stuff first.
 

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I just completed the "short cut" method on a 2013 JK. Heat was fine on the passenger side but only mildly warm coming out of driver side vents. Tried several things, flushing the entire system, flushing only the heater core, etc. with no success. Overall, it took about three hours from start to finish and that includes repairing the places where I cut the dash frame. It can be done in a shorter amount of time but I took my time with each step. Total cost was $52 for the heater core, $60 for a vibrating saw and metal blade, $10 for heater hose / clamps and about $20 for hose and parts to flush the core (also used to empty the core before I cut the pipes). All in ~$140 and three hours of my time. Jeep now has blistering heat coming out of all vents equally.
 

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The shortcut is a HUGE time saver. It also decreases the possibility of screwing something up while taking that much of the jeep apart. I helped a buddy out changing his core with the shortcut and I sure as heck would NOT be doing the long way.
 

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I just completed the "short cut" method on a 2013 JK. Heat was fine on the passenger side but only mildly warm coming out of driver side vents. Tried several things, flushing the entire system, flushing only the heater core, etc. with no success. Overall, it took about three hours from start to finish and that includes repairing the places where I cut the dash frame. It can be done in a shorter amount of time but I took my time with each step. Total cost was $52 for the heater core, $60 for a vibrating saw and metal blade, $10 for heater hose / clamps and about $20 for hose and parts to flush the core (also used to empty the core before I cut the pipes). All in ~$140 and three hours of my time. Jeep now has blistering heat coming out of all vents equally.
How did you repair the dash frame?
 

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I guarantee, if/when I have to replace the core in my '12, it will be the short cut procedure, for sure!!!
 

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I would also question whether it is something other than the core if you are getting heat on one side but not the other. Perhaps a problem with one of the doors that is not allowing the heated air to make it to the the drivers side vent. Obviously if it is blowing but the air is cold then most likely the core.

Do you get any heat at all? Does the defroster work? I find that when switching from any of the combo settings to straight defrost it always gives me difficulty getting it to switch to full defrost and stay there.

Before I messed with any heater core, (have done it several times in other vehicles) I would exhaust ALL other options.

Good luck, hope its just a fuse or something stupid.......LOL
 

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How did you repair the dash frame?
I repaired the dash frame using two inch flat braces and self tapping metal screws I picked up at Lowes. I wanted to make sure that the frame lined back up where I cut it so that there would be no issues reattaching the dash. I made the cuts in places where the part that was cut out would still be attached via the two bolts. After reattaching the frame and adding the braces, the dash frame lined up perfectly.
 

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Luckily I have the max care lifetime service plan. They replaced my heater core and I am getting great heat again. Only cost me the 100 dollar deductible.
 

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What people call "a shortcut" is the right way of doing it.

Removing the dash in order to access the heater core is nonsense. The systems engineers at Chrysler did not do their jobs properly; they did not provide access to this replaceable item.

:)
 

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Luckily I have the max care lifetime service plan. They replaced my heater core and I am getting great heat again. Only cost me the 100 dollar deductible.

Ummm...No, it didn't. It cost you the 100 dollar deductible PLUS the cost of the plan. Some of those plans are something like 2500 to 3000? Meanwhile a heatercore may be a pain in the ass to do, but if you do it yourself it costs the price of the heater core.... which is less than your 100 dollar deductible.
 

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Quick question... when backflushing the core are you sure that there is good flow from the hose going to it? A pinched / restricted hose won’t let the heater work either. Rare but I would check that also. Return hose too.
 

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Luckily I have the max care lifetime service plan. They replaced my heater core and I am getting great heat again. Only cost me the 100 dollar deductible.

Ummm...No, it didn't. It cost you the 100 dollar deductible PLUS the cost of the plan. Some of those plans are something like 2500 to 3000? Meanwhile a heatercore may be a pain in the ass to do, but if you do it yourself it costs the price of the heater core.... which is less than your 100 dollar deductible.
Plus 2 on your thought. I see post like this all the time. "It only cost me 100$" great!,but how much you paid for the maxcare plan?? People tent to forget to add that to the bill.
 

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Hi Bob. Lol when it comes to mechanics. I’m a dummy. I could never do this stuff myself. For me the peace of mind with the max care is the way to go.

Now, I am sure my dad could have done it. :)
 

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“If you do it yourself, it costs less than the $100 deductible...”!? If you bought the MaxCare plan (10-11 years ago), you would be crazy to do it yourself at this point. Your time and frustration may be free to you, but others value their own time. I don’t understand another’s complaint about someone choosing to purchase the protection plan...and deciding to use it.

And as many have pointed out above, the difficulty of this job alone is more than many want to repeat.
 

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The reason I would do the "short cut" plan is it doesn't require the dash to be completely torn apart. I think it's almost impossible to get everything back in place like it was from the factory. That means to me lots of rattles and squeeks that weren't there before. No way I trust a dealer tech to get everything exactly re-installed like the factory. The "short cut" also requires very little to actually be removed. Wiith a new bolt in bracket it would be extremely easy to replace the heatercore if it happens again.
 

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I have a long winding story about replacing heater cores in a Jeep Wrangler (I will try to keep it short, but each piece is important to the whole story):

About 2 years ago our 2008 was in for a starter issue (later diagnosed by my wife using Google and results from this forum- not yet fixed) and a heater core issue. While there a technician videos the underside of our Jeep and posted on YouTube several indications of coolant leaks (this is the start). Because the video had personally identifying information, we asked the video be taken down. Nothing was done about the leaks. Our MaxCare warranty eventually replaced the heater cores ($100 deductible) but it took months to convince the dealership to replace versus rinse/flush (there were also delays getting them to admit there was a problem - but they could see a drip on the frame of the vehicle when looking at the starter). Six months later, the family returns to me from a July week trip in Florida with radiator fan running on high for which I only received dumbfounded looks of amazement. The radiator had small crack and had leaked all its fluids.

The dealership replaces the radiator (no cost, they point to the heater core repair warranty, wow), but the Jeep is on a death spiral...

2 months later we are still losing coolant...they replace the water pump ($0)

2 months later still losing but now popping an engine code (cylinder #5)

Emission Sensor replaced ($100?), but 1 week still popping the code (this is about December 2018). Now they start deep dive study...replace cylinder head...1 week later no good...eventually March 2019 they replace the 241,000ish, 11 year old engine under original, unlimited power train warranty (2008 vintage manufacturers warranty) with a new engine.

I noticed yesterday that the drivers side vent is not blowing hot air...
 
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