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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, I'm wondering if anyone has had this issue before and if there's a solution.

(Car is a 1998 S70 T5 SE)

I had the heater core replaced in February 2014 as it was at the point where it was wet under the passenger carpet and at one point I had mist coming out of the vents. Since the heater core started going bad, and even this long after replacement, I have the pleasure of getting the fantastic smell of coolant whenever I turn the heat on in my car :thumbdown: Since it's getting cooler again (way up here in Canadia), this issue has presented itself when using the heat for the first time last week.

Since the heater core went bad I've also been getting a thin film of what I assume is coolant on all of the windows and especially the inside of my windshield. I spoke to my mechanic about this last winter and he told me it's just from residual coolant in some of the lines (not verbatim, but along those lines).

My windshield defroster has also been extremely slow to clear the windshield, which is very frustrating since I'll have to wait 5-10 minutes before I can even start driving safely! I'm wondering if this is due to the film of coolant on the windshield, despite me wiping it down a few times a week.

Any input would be appreciated!:)
 

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Depending on the quality of the replacement core it could have failed again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Depending on the quality of the replacement core it could have failed again.
Possible, but the smell has been there since it was replaced. There was no time period where there wasn't the smell or film on the windshield. Definitely no wet carpet anymore, or mist from the vents
 

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How good was the cleanup within the core case? As far as I know, antifreeze doesn't evaporate. Poor cleaning equals smell for years.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
How good was the cleanup within the core case? As far as I know, antifreeze doesn't evaporate. Poor cleaning equals smell for years.
I honestly couldn't tell you since I'm not the one that did the repair, my mechanic did it
 

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Such a simple DIY repair!! 2 hours tops if you leave the junction box alone. IPD USA have a great video on core replacement. Use it to remove your core and inspect the internals. At the very least you will get to see if they used a Behr (original) core or one of those funky black self exploding ones that crack open after afew miles. How good is the heat output? Is it nice and uncomfortably warm on the highest setting?

Sent from my SM-N910G using Tapatalk
 

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A really bad A/C evaporator can cause this
 

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Or could be the smell of an unwashed aftermarket heater core. They have an oily film that reeks for months if not washed.

Sent from my SM-N910G using Tapatalk
 

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Possible, but the smell has been there since it was replaced. There was no time period where there wasn't the smell or film on the windshield. Definitely no wet carpet anymore, or mist from the vents
Your mechanic probably messed something up then, or like JRL suggested there might be an issue somewhere else. I've replaced a few P80 heater cores and while a slight coolant smell remained in a couple cars, the windshield always stopped fogging up and with the heater on the air coming from the vents never smelled of coolant.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
A really bad A/C evaporator can cause this
I could see this being a possibility. My A/C was a bit weaker than usual this past summer. Also had a couple of times where I had no air flow at all, had to turn the car off and on again after which it was totally fine. How can I check if the evaporator is the issue?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Such a simple DIY repair!! 2 hours tops if you leave the junction box alone. IPD USA have a great video on core replacement. Use it to remove your core and inspect the internals. At the very least you will get to see if they used a Behr (original) core or one of those funky black self exploding ones that crack open after afew miles. How good is the heat output? Is it nice and uncomfortably warm on the highest setting?

Sent from my SM-N910G using Tapatalk
I believe a Behr replacement core was used but I can't quite remember! Heat output is decent from what I can remember, I haven't used it at full blast since last winter though so I will have to check that and get back to you!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
Your mechanic probably messed something up then, or like JRL suggested there might be an issue somewhere else. I've replaced a few P80 heater cores and while a slight coolant smell remained in a couple cars, the windshield always stopped fogging up and with the heater on the air coming from the vents never smelled of coolant.
I think this is the right answer. I've only gone back to him once since then, and for my latest repair I went to a new guy. Kinda lost trust in him after he said the smell will go away and not to worry about it, also I'm pretty sure he broke 2 of the clips that hold the big piece of trim underneath the glove box in the passenger footwell... And the trim on the driver's side underneath all the dash switches isn't flush anymore :/
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Or could be the smell of an unwashed aftermarket heater core. They have an oily film that reeks for months if not washed.

Sent from my SM-N910G using Tapatalk
I'm pretty sure it was replaced with the OEM Behr core. I'll have to check!
 
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