Problem with removing the heater box on my 1969 Ranchero

Discussion in 'Ranchero Tech Help' started by cdmdriver, Mar 26, 2020.

  1. cdmdriver

    cdmdriver In First Gear

    Messages:
    8
    Hi Everyone,

    The dreaded heater core crapped out and started leaking. I've put this repair off for awhile but decided to dig in and get this done while I am quarantined at home . After looking at all the videos I could find on replacing similar year Mustangs, Cougars, etc... heater cores, it looked like my job should be easier. After all, my car only has a heater no A/C, and the dash is much more open. After unscrewing all the fasteners and bolts for the heater box I could find (and reach), from both the engine compartment (firewall) and the underside of the dash, the darn box will still not budge! I have spent a day trying to find what is still holding this box in place. I have not removed the dash. I really did not want to get that destructive (its in perfect condition). I did remove the glove box.
    Can anyone help direct me to the hidden bolt/s holding this box in place.?
    Do I have to remove the entire dashpad/dashboard to get access to a hidden bolt?
    I have the actual shop manuals, but I cant find what Ive missed. The engineering on this is ridiculous. It could have been sooo easy.
    I hoping someone has a simple trick.

    Thank you!
     
  2. burninbush

    burninbush In Maximum Overdrive

    Messages:
    8,340
    Location:
    near SF
    Probably the same as a '71? Look for a 4th bolt on the firewall, near the back side of the (driver's) head. My recollection, there is also a brace that bolts to the back of the dash. I'd say you're better off to remove the top of the dash.
     
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  3. cdmdriver

    cdmdriver In First Gear

    Messages:
    8
    I believe I removed all the nuts that went through the firewall.
    I will look into removing just the dash pad. I'm sure Ford made that easy to remove as well!

    Thank you
     
  4. PonyExpressRider

    PonyExpressRider In Maximum Overdrive

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    Location:
    Sutherlin, OR
    If you have a BIG Block in there, you will miss a nut that is behind the block, near the tranny hump. Pain in the arse to get to. Might be a pain on a small block too. But should be 4 nuts to remove from the engine bay, and another 2 bolts from inside, if I remember correctly. Also, you can have up to 3 cables, normally 2, from the control arms to the box. Regardless, it will be easier to remove with the pad out of the way
     

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  5. burninbush

    burninbush In Maximum Overdrive

    Messages:
    8,340
    Location:
    near SF
    Not that hard to get off -- once you see how they did it. Remove the small screws holding the top of the dash in place, then pull it straight back about 3/4" to un-clip it, after which you should be able to tilt it up to get it out of the car. Once it's out, take a look at the clips that hold the front edge in place, it'll make sense then.
     
  6. cdmdriver

    cdmdriver In First Gear

    Messages:
    8
    Ok,

    The problem I had with the heater box; I found a nut that I missed through the firewall. It was all the way over on the other side of the transmission tunnel, hidden So far over that I did not think the heater box could possibly reach over to the drivers side.
    Of course, this was after I spent a day trying to remove the dash. The dash has about 4 or 5 screws up front, easy enough, but there is a hidden screw inside attached to the instrument panel above the fuel gauge.
    I had to wrestle "gently" with that for quite a while before I found it.
    I could have probable done the heater box removal without removing the dash, but it did make it a little easier to remove the vent on the right side that has three nuts that hold it in place. two are up front and easy, and you guessed it the third that is almost impossible to get too.
    With the dash removed and everything wide open, I decided to do a few "while your at it" replacements.

    Thanks everyone for your responses.
     
  7. PonyExpressRider

    PonyExpressRider In Maximum Overdrive

    Messages:
    1,081
    Location:
    Sutherlin, OR
    It is a learning experience!

    On mine, the motor was out of the way, and I was in the process of a total strip down when I removed my heater box. And it was one of the first things to go back in. Some of the worst surface rust was found under the dash. So yeah, you may have some of that while I'm at it tasks.
     

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