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    Thread: Need DIY Heater Core Coolant Flush Instructions

    1. Member tuntsfaah's Avatar
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      Apr 2nd, 2007
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      2004 / Audi / A4 USP, 2001 / Audi / S4, 2005 / VW/ Jetta GLI, 2001/ VW/ Jetta Wolfsburg
      09-27-2010 07:53 PM #1
      Hey y'all -

      I recently bought a high mileage 2001 S4 and discovered that I have no heat. I was researching and found that some people would replace theirs and it would take them several hours, while the alternative is flushing the heater core since it is common that it is clogged.

      I found a DIY thread on coolant flush here but could not find details to the job. Does anyone have detailed instructions on how to do this and have picture or video illustrations?

      It's getting pretty cold in Chicago, and I would love to have some heat

      I bought a pearl white 2001 S4 in Elmhurst and the car fax had not service records, the previous owners misplaced the owner's manual, but the car seems to be well maintained. Wish i knew the owner so I could get some info.

    2. Member tuntsfaah's Avatar
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      2004 / Audi / A4 USP, 2001 / Audi / S4, 2005 / VW/ Jetta GLI, 2001/ VW/ Jetta Wolfsburg
      09-28-2010 11:41 PM #2
      I called Audi (Orland Park) to find out why regular coolants won't work in my car. The technician told me because the base product would gel up in the cooling system. I told him I suspected having a clog in my heater core and I asked if flushing it may help...he says that he hadn't seen an issue like that resolved with flushing.

      Ok, so I asked if the coolant is available by VW (Oak Lawn), because they were 20miles away and VW was 3miles away. He went on to tell me that only Audi sells it...right there I knew he was bull****ting me. His suggestion was to replace the heater core, so I went along and he gave me an estimate of $2600!

      I asked VW the same thing and they gave me half that because the process may take awhile, but they would try flushing it first and then they go ahead and replace, so it may cost less. Technician was trying to get me there and then try to haggle me.

      Watch out which Stealership you talk to!

    3. Member tuntsfaah's Avatar
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      09-29-2010 04:17 AM #3
      Finally found what I was looking for, a picture tutorial. Link also has a lot of DIYs!

      I am planning on doing this tomorrow and hoping that GOD blesses me with heat

    4. Member tuntsfaah's Avatar
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      Apr 2nd, 2007
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      2004 / Audi / A4 USP, 2001 / Audi / S4, 2005 / VW/ Jetta GLI, 2001/ VW/ Jetta Wolfsburg
      09-30-2010 04:48 PM #4
      IT WORKED!!!

      I went to home depot to buy that 3/4" hose from plumbing, but that was too expensive ($34). So I purchased a home depot bucket and lid for only $4, then I went to Autozone and purchase 6' of 3/4" heater hose $7.50 [u may need up to 7']. I got it cut into 2 pieces...1.5' and 4.5'. So I fixed my heat for $12 instead of $180 coolant flush or replacing the heater core for the ridiculous price of $2600.

      I attached like the tutorial said and flushed away. I saw the deposits getting flushed out into the bucket. I did the reverse to make sure it was clean too as suggested.

      However, after I did it, I still got no heat.

      The trick is to drive the car around for a few minutes and force the system to circulate itself, provided that there isn't another clog else where. While driving, i could feel a little heat. Then after I shut down the engine, I released the pressure cap and all the air that was in the system got release and then there was HEAT!

      The reservoir might look like it is about to overflow, but allow it to sit, and run the engine a little again and it will go back to normal.

      I will post the video of the flush here later!
      Last edited by tuntsfaah; 10-01-2010 at 01:28 AM.

    5. 08-22-2016 11:16 AM #5
      I was having trouble with my heat and didn't want to pay to have a mechanic tell me the heater core needed to be replaced for $1,100 so I did the DIY flush myself for about $80 including buying a few tools.

      The same DIY heater core flush listed on this thread worked for me as well! I started by flushing the system with warm water first. I hooked up the garden hose to the inlet hose of the heater core and hooked up the 3/4" discharge hose to the outlet connection of the heater core and flushed until the water coming out was clear and there was no more sediment. Then I switched the hoses and forced warm water through the outlet hose and repeated. Then I took CLR (Calcium, Lime, Rust) cleaner and poured it into the connected hose using a funnel until it showed in the discharge hose that the heater core was full. I let this sit for 20 minutes. Then we flushed water through again, both from the inlet side first and then through the outlet side. We made sure there was no sign of bubbles from the CLR in the system. To help remove as much water as possible, we blew into the hose before finally adding in 50/50 antifreeze to refill the system. We hooked everything back up and topped it off with antifreeze. I ran the car and in the first few minutes my heat didn't seem to change, but after the car got warm and I drove for a bit it was significantly hotter than before. Before the flush, my car's heat would barely work and it was especially noticeable for winters in Wisconsin. I recommend trying this fix before going to a mechanic and having the heater core replaced.

      The link below shows the process we used. This link is for a Mazda pickup, but for the most part it's very similar to what I did.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M9SIafVsqyc

      Hope this helps.

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