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  1. #1
    Established Member Two Rings
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    Flushed my heater core with CLR. Lots of pics.

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    Hey guys. Kinda new in this forum but have spent lots of time on the AW & QW 90 + B5 forums over the 10 years.

    Anyway, I bought a nice looking B6 at auction a couple of weeks ago and have been slowly working on the TB/WP work. Now that everything is back together and running like a top, I'm trying to solve a "no heat" issue. I figured it had something to do with the coolant reservoir looking like a gravy dish.

    After a couple of engine flushes, I set out to flush the heater core. Nothing new here, I copied ideas from several threads. Posting in here in case it might help someone else in the future.

    First I took these stubborn guys off. If they haven't been moved in a while, it will take lots of pulling or a radiator hose pick.



    Then attached some length of 3/4" ID hose.



    I decided to first back blow the remaining water from the HC. Set the compressor regulator to 20 psi and made a night tight fit with some black tape.



    Thought I'd give you a preview of some of the crap that came loose. Yikes.



    I filled the core with distilled water and then blew in each direction a couple of times.

    Then it was time to try out the CLR. I used the "drill pump" idea except I modified it with a Y-valve.



    With one leg of the Y up in the air, I could top off the system and keep it full for better pressure.



    In retrospect, it would've been easier just to have a buck with both ends of the hose in the bucket. And probably easier too. Oh well, this worked pretty well. I let it soak, then spun it in both directions, let it soak, then pulsed it.

    Action shot:



    Afterwards, I cycled a few gallons of distilled water through there to flush any remaining CLR. Blew that out with some compressed air also.

    I didn't finish up until pretty late last night, so I've still got to burp the system before I know if my heating system improves. But with the amount of silt & scale that came out of there, I'll be surprised if this didn't help.
    "I looked around the garage and had to laugh. Nothing worked. Everything needed something. Somethings needed everything. Nothing needed nothing."

    Peter Egan

  2. #2
    Veteran Member Four Rings kneel's Avatar
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    Dec 01 2007
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    My Garage
    Atlas Gray Revo Stg.3 Avant, MK5 GLI
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    Orange County, NY 10918

    wow nice write up. I have a leak in my heat core hose, was looking into flshing everything out.

    In for the results of this
    Atlas Gray #BTA4Avant
    IG: avantneil

  3. #3
    Senior Member Two Rings Toronto5.5's Avatar
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    Apr 03 2011
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    GTA

    Wow you went all out, good stuff.
    Luckily on the B6 replacing the heater core isn't that big of a deal as it would be on a B5 or a VW of similar years.

    Didn't know radiator hose picks existed! I'm going to pick one up now and flush my core too. I couldn't get the lines off.

  4. #4
    Established Member Two Rings
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    oakland, CA

    Wow. Great method for the home brew flush. I'll have to remember this.

  5. #5
    Established Member Two Rings
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    My Garage
    1995 90Q *sold*
    Location
    South Burlington, VT

    Quote Originally Posted by Toronto5.5 View Post
    Wow you went all out, good stuff.
    Luckily on the B6 replacing the heater core isn't that big of a deal as it would be on a B5 or a VW of similar years.

    Didn't know radiator hose picks existed! I'm going to pick one up now and flush my core too. I couldn't get the lines off.
    Yeah, I didn't know either! I don't have one, but I read about them *after* I struggled with about every other tool I owned.

    http://www.harborfreight.com/8-inch-...ick-96572.html



    I'm adding one of these to my next HF order.
    "I looked around the garage and had to laugh. Nothing worked. Everything needed something. Somethings needed everything. Nothing needed nothing."

    Peter Egan

  6. #6
    Registered Member One Ring
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    Jan 25 2012
    AZ Member #
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    Location
    East Bay California

    Ok I'm having the No heat issue too on my 2003 Audi A4 1.8T and I'm tired of it. I'm going to try to flush the heater core this weekend but I'm a bit of a newbie at this. Can I just try flushing the system with water? (I don't think I can replicate this setup) Also, can someone tell me step-by-step on how to "burp" or "bleed" the system? Thanks a bunch!

  7. #7
    Veteran Member Three Rings aalipio's Avatar
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    Sep 03 2008
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    My Garage
    05 S4 V8 02 A4 1.8T
    Location
    N las vegas

    Nice! Well done! Just replaced my heater return hose because it was leaking. Still need to flush, takes a lil bit to start blowing heat. Will use your home brew!
    Thanks,


    P.s. did this resolve your issue?

  8. #8
    Established Member Two Rings VisionPaintball's Avatar
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    Keyport,NJ

    Update?

    I plan on doing it this weekend.
    '02 B5 S4 Avant

  9. #9
    Established Member Two Rings VisionPaintball's Avatar
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    Keyport,NJ

    Did mine today and now I have heat. Just used 2 pieces of 3/4"ID hose. Used a funnel and poured in CLR/water mix, let sit for 4 minutes,flushed with garden hose,repeat. Also took out the battery to make getting the hoses off easier.
    '02 B5 S4 Avant

  10. #10
    Veteran Member Four Rings BARRY's Avatar
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    AE86 20v, UZZ30 LS2, 2002 A4 B6 1.8t
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    drill pumps are the absolute best. they're the choice for transmission/diff fill jobs as well.

  11. #11
    Active Member One Ring
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    West Lafayette, IN, USA

    I am having the same issue of almost no heat. I took my 2002 a4 1.8t quattro to midas for a free check up and they said the heater core is clogged. They quoted me 1000$ to replace it and said flushing out the heater core doesn't help! 1000$ is a little too much and so I thought I'd give heater core flushing a try but I do not have any kind of compressor or pump to force water through. I was thinking that I'd pour water from the first floor of my apartment building to give it the pressure head. Would that be a good idea? Any other suggestions for someone that doesn't have a compressor?

  12. #12
    Senior Member Two Rings 5TAK's Avatar
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    Mar 30 2006
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    Sacramento, CA

    wow, you're quite a plumber
    -=2005 A4 1.8TQ 6MT DG AVANT=-
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  13. #13
    Veteran Member Four Rings old guy's Avatar
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    '09 CC VR6 Sport
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    Western Maryland

    Quote Originally Posted by maestro.atish View Post
    Any other suggestions for someone that doesn't have a compressor?
    Yes. Get a drill powered pump for $10 as Catamount90 suggested and if that doesn't work you can always replace the heater core yourself for under $200: Clicky click
    Last edited by old guy; 11-29-2012 at 06:23 PM. Reason: redundant use

  14. #14
    Senior Member Two Rings maurizio's Avatar
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    Vernon Hills, IL

    It's threads like that keep me coming back to the AZ! Thank you
    "Are you actually asking that question.. Just don't even post on my thread. why do I need to lie on an Audi forum about me fucking two bitches at once. (not literally) yes i did, you are late to the party.
    and this thread has ran out of gas. I just wanted to tell people about my experience I had 2 nights ago and felt like sharing it with my fellow B6'ers. And I thank the people who didn't hate."

  15. #15

    Re: Flushed my heater core with CLR. Lots of pics.

    Quote Originally Posted by maestro.atish View Post
    I am having the same issue of almost no heat. I took my 2002 a4 1.8t quattro to midas for a free check up and they said the heater core is clogged. They quoted me 1000$ to replace it and said flushing out the heater core doesn't help! 1000$ is a little too much and so I thought I'd give heater core flushing a try but I do not have any kind of compressor or pump to force water through. I was thinking that I'd pour water from the first floor of my apartment building to give it the pressure head. Would that be a good idea? Any other suggestions for someone that doesn't have a compressor?
    Just stop by AutoZone and pickup a fluid transfer pump for like $15.
    Run one side of the core to the transfer pump, and the other to a bucket.

    Sent from my Banana Phone
    18" S4 AVUS Rims, Stage 1 tune, Unitronic HFC & 3" DP, BKR7EIX-11 plugs, 2.0 TFSI Coil Packs, ST Performance Coilover Suspension

  16. #16
    Veteran Member Four Rings MikTip's Avatar
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    Awesome DIY post!

  17. #17
    Active Member One Ring
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    West Lafayette, IN, USA

    alright, thanks for the suggestions guys, there's an autozone right next to where I stay so, the fluid transfer pump sounds like a good idea although I am just worried about the delivery pressure since I read that too much pressure (>10 psi) is not good for the heater core. would that be an issue with the fluid transfer pump?
    two more questions:
    1. when i disconnect the inlet and outlet hoses, will there be coolant gushing out like crazy or just a little bit of dripping that should be manageable (like placing a rag or something similar), just so that i can be prepared?
    2. once i am done flushing, and move on to bleeding the coolant, again, will it be gushing out or only a little bit will bleed? and if the coolant is bleeding then won't the engine overheat (or not all the coolant bleeds, and most of it actually still circulates within the system)?

  18. #18
    I can't find it on Autozone's website, but here is the almost exact same pump found on ebay. It is a hand pump, shouldn't damage anything at all.
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Performance-...ecebdf&vxp=mtr

  19. #19
    Active Member One Ring
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    I found one hand pump at autozone too

    http://www.autozone.com/autozone/acc...er=219982_0_0_

    thanks.

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by maestro.atish View Post
    I found one hand pump at autozone too

    http://www.autozone.com/autozone/acc...er=219982_0_0_

    thanks.
    Don't know if you saw the price.... $208
    Pretty sure that is for 10 gallon drums... Should only need a small hand pump like the one I posted to get the job done. Autozone has the one I posted from ebay... I just can't find the link to it on their site. The only difference I think, is that the Autozone one is white, and the pump top handle is a little different. Same exact design though. It is designed to screw onto something like a 2 liter bottle.

  21. #21
    Active Member One Ring
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    So, I finally got all the tools needed. But when i got down to doing it, I couldn't open the clamp that holds the hose. Is there a special way to open it? Can that clamp be re-used when I put everything back together?

    Also, when I opened the coolant reservoir to check the level, there was a hissing sound as if trapped gas just escaped (the car was off but still hot when this happened). Could there be an air bubble that was released or it happened because the engine was still hot?

  22. #22
    Active Member One Ring
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    also, I ended up buying a drill pump as old guy suggested since that was available and yeah vjborelli, I hadn't checked the price for the hand pump I mentioned...what a foolish mistake, ha

  23. #23
    Veteran Member Four Rings
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    Quote Originally Posted by maestro.atish View Post
    So, I finally got all the tools needed. But when i got down to doing it, I couldn't open the clamp that holds the hose. Is there a special way to open it? Can that clamp be re-used when I put everything back together?

    Also, when I opened the coolant reservoir to check the level, there was a hissing sound as if trapped gas just escaped (the car was off but still hot when this happened). Could there be an air bubble that was released or it happened because the engine was still hot?
    the cooling system is pressurized, hence the noise when you opened the cap while the engine was still warm. If you open it too soon after driving, you'll get hot coolant spraying out in addition to the air so be careful
    2002 A4 2.0TQ 5M. 215k+ mi

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  24. #24
    Active Member One Ring
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    Ok, I did the heater core flush finally last night and got the hoses off...they were stuck real bad. After flushing in both directions I did notice that there was some silt that came through but I don't know if that was the reason for no heat because it wasn't a lot I thought. Also, after putting everything back together and trying to burp using the bleed hole, there was no coolant flow at all when the car and the heater were turned on. Could it be that there wasn't any coolant flowing because the engine was cold? If so, then that would mean that burping should be done when the engine is warm so that the coolant is actually circulating through the core?

    Thanks.
    Atish

  25. #25
    Veteran Member Four Rings widgget's Avatar
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    2003 A4 1.8TQ Stage 3 & 2002 Ski-Doo MXZ 800
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    Quote Originally Posted by catamount90 View Post
    Yeah, I didn't know either! I don't have one, but I read about them *after* I struggled with about every other tool I owned.

    http://www.harborfreight.com/8-inch-...ick-96572.html




    I'm adding one of these to my next HF order.
    I made one of these out of an old screwdriver when i was trying to pull the heatercore connection under the hood a few weeks ago. works great.

    Also did basically the same thing with the sections of hose and a compressor, but on the exit side rather then the milk carton i connected my shop vac and just sucked up the crap that came out (i didn't really care to look at the gunk since i was replacing the core anyway, just needed to drain it).
    03 Tiptronic A4 1.8TQ - REVO STAGE 3
    -*- Click For Car Details -*-

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    • FOR SALE:

  26. #26
    Active Member Two Rings audi.559's Avatar
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    97 Acura Integra
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    Madera CA

    can anyone tell me if the top heater hose is the supply and the bottom one the return?????

  27. #27
    Veteran Member Four Rings diagnosticator's Avatar
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    Seattle, WA

    Quote Originally Posted by maestro.atish View Post
    I am having the same issue of almost no heat. I took my 2002 a4 1.8t quattro to midas for a free check up and they said the heater core is clogged. They quoted me 1000$ to replace it and said flushing out the heater core doesn't help! 1000$ is a little too much and so I thought I'd give heater core flushing a try but I do not have any kind of compressor or pump to force water through. I was thinking that I'd pour water from the first floor of my apartment building to give it the pressure head. Would that be a good idea? Any other suggestions for someone that doesn't have a compressor?
    Just use garden hose water pressure. Cooling system flush kits have the fittings to fit a garden hose fitting.
    Vorsprung durch Technik

  28. #28
    Veteran Member Four Rings diagnosticator's Avatar
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    Seattle, WA

    Quote Originally Posted by audi.559 View Post
    can anyone tell me if the top heater hose is the supply and the bottom one the return?????
    Bottom hose is the supply to the heater core, top hose is the return from the heater core.
    Vorsprung durch Technik

  29. #29
    Veteran Member Four Rings diagnosticator's Avatar
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    Seattle, WA

    Quote Originally Posted by maestro.atish View Post
    Ok, I did the heater core flush finally last night and got the hoses off...they were stuck real bad. After flushing in both directions I did notice that there was some silt that came through but I don't know if that was the reason for no heat because it wasn't a lot I thought. Also, after putting everything back together and trying to burp using the bleed hole, there was no coolant flow at all when the car and the heater were turned on. Could it be that there wasn't any coolant flowing because the engine was cold? If so, then that would mean that burping should be done when the engine is warm so that the coolant is actually circulating through the core?

    Thanks.
    Atish
    The heater has coolant flow regardless of engine temperature, or t-stat state open or closed. When bleeding air from the heater core using the hole in the upper return tube, the engine should NOT running, and the coolant tank cap is removed with the tank full to the upper Max line.
    Vorsprung durch Technik

  30. #30
    Veteran Member Four Rings diagnosticator's Avatar
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    Aug 26 2005
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    Location
    Seattle, WA

    Quote Originally Posted by maestro.atish View Post
    So, I finally got all the tools needed. But when i got down to doing it, I couldn't open the clamp that holds the hose. Is there a special way to open it? Can that clamp be re-used when I put everything back together?

    Also, when I opened the coolant reservoir to check the level, there was a hissing sound as if trapped gas just escaped (the car was off but still hot when this happened). Could there be an air bubble that was released or it happened because the engine was still hot?
    For the spring type "Corbin" hose clamps There is a special hose clamp plier tool, made by KD, and sold in most auto parts stores. Makes releasing the spring type hose clamps a lot easier than using vice grips or similar. The KD tool has round pads on the tips, that rotate and with grooves in the pads to engage the spring clamp tangs. The hose clamp plier tool also has a ratchet to hold the clamp open without needing to be squeezed by hand constantly.



    The Corbin spring hose clamps are reusable, and are superior to worm screw drive hose clamps, because they maintain a constant uniform sealing pressure all around the hose, and maintain a tight hose seal regardless of cooling system temperature, and compensate automatically for hose creep as the hose relaxes under the clamp after awhile.
    Vorsprung durch Technik

  31. #31
    Registered Member Four Rings ddillenger's Avatar
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    Upstate NY
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    Look up restore, and restore plus by Fleetguard. One is an oil remover, one is a mineral remover. After a treatment the inside of your motor and cooling system will be like new.
    496620796f75206861766520746f2061736b2e2e2e

    ddillenger84(at)gmail(dot)com



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