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Heater core


Active Member
February 25, 2008
Reaction score
City, State
South Carolina
Year, Model & Trim Level
96 XLT
I tried searching this site earlier, but I was running out of daylight. I have 1996 Explorer 4.0 v6. I am replacing the heater core. Well I assumed I needed to drop the dash like every other car I have ever owned, but I read somewhere that I didn't need to drop the entire dash. I was wondering if there was an easier way to remove this heater core than what I read from a Haynes manual?
Like this post for example:

Elite Explorer

Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 3 95-01 ford explorer blend door quick fix (5 minutes)


for those of you who like me, dont want to shell out 1200$ to fix this blend door issue, you can do this. im writing it in as simple a way as i can for those, who like me, arent very mechanically inclined.

open glove box, and push the sides in to drop the box down as far as possible. you will see a big black plastic box. inside of that box is the blend door, and your heater core (looks like a miniture radiator).

take a razor knife and on the farthest left side of that box, cut a square hole big enough to get your hand in (only cut 3 sides of the square though so that you can just bend the plastic down out of your way and put it back in place when finished). now that it's open, you can see the heater core, but not the blend door. the blend door is located around the back left side of the heater core. reach your right hand in, with your thumb down, so the palm of your hand is facing the passenger side of the truck. when you reach behind the heater core, you will feel the blend door, and you can swing it open or closed. if you want your air conditioning to work, open the door all the way. if you want your heat to work, close the door all the way. after you have adjusted the door how you want it, blend the plastic you cut to get your hand in, back to it's normal position and tape it up with some duct or thick masking tape.

unfortunatley you can only have hot or cold doing it this way, but it saves you 1200$ and a lot of headaches trying to fix this by pulling the dash.

for where i live, i need only a.c. in the summer, and only heat in the winter, so i just go in and change the door position twice a year. the original job takes about 5 minutes, then at the beginning of summer or winter when i go in to change the door position, it takes me about 3 minutes, and most of that time is spent removing the tape and retaping it.

i hope this helps someone.