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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-06-2012, 03:20 PM Thread Starter
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Coolant Smell Coming from Vents

So after searching all 52 threads because i'm stuck with my android phone to do this and it doesn't want to search the posts, I apologize if this has already been asked. Ok so i'm driving today without the a/c running or fan on and catch a whiff of coolant smell. I was just under my car this past weekend doing transmission fluid change and oil change and didn't notice any problems with leaky coolant hoses or anything out of the ordinary. So I was puzzled as to why I smelled coolant. Stopped at gas station...engine bay is dry and no smell of coolant or sign.......Soo I drive again and realize it's coming from a/c vents. There is no wetness on any carpet floorboard...and no sign of a leak. My only guess is the heater core is leaking.....any help on idea or anyone ever replaced a cobalt ls 2006 heater core?? Thankyou.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-07-2012, 06:46 AM
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Good morning dgwithabowtie,

I see that you're newer to the forum - welcome! I work with GM Customer Service and while I can't help with technical information (there are some amazing, tech-savvy members here, though who I'm sure will jump on the thread soon), if you ever wanted for me to check into warranty or recall information for you, or if you were ever to work with a dealership, I'm available to assist.

All the best,
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-07-2012, 08:51 AM
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That's a sign of the heater core leaking.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-07-2012, 09:21 AM
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If you intend to do it yourself I can dig up the GM how to. I know you need lots of patience because it is a bitch to change.

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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-07-2012, 12:17 PM
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sweet syrup smell = burning coolant

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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-14-2012, 10:58 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys, and yeah I'm stuck doing the core repair myself, I freaked out when it happened cause I didn't have the funds available for the repair at the time (then again who really ever does when crap brakes). One of my mechanic buddies advised me that since it's not winter yet and I needed a little more time til pay day, that I could bypass the heater core with a $4 heater hose and so far that has worked perfect as a "stich" to keep me on the road . So at the end of the month I'm going to buy the heater core and luckily have some good friends with their own repair shop that will help me with the dash disassembly for free. Just glad this didn't end up being coolant all over the floorboards to have to smell and do major clean up. Sucks but I count my blessings this isn't a $1,000+ type of mandatory repair.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 03:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Coby7 View Post
If you intend to do it yourself I can dig up the GM how to. I know you need lots of patience because it is a bitch to change.
I am having the same issue on my 06 Lt coupe..Could you possibly send the gm how to to me...
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-22-2012, 08:28 PM Thread Starter
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It was a headache and a half. Took me 10 hours to complete but again worth the $ saved. You have to remove the dash piece by piece and most of the dash trim does pop out without too much difficulty. The problem I ran into is after pulling all the plastic off / lowering the steering wheel / removing the trim below the radio and my manual shifter.....etc.....i exposed the bottom black plastic housing to the heater core only to find it IS a cover under there and it is held on not by screws but points of plastic that are "tac welded" to hold it together (Used and flat head screwdriver and decent hammer to break the points). That cover also is connected to the firewall on the left (driver side- right of gas pedal) and right (passenger side- left of blower motor resistor). Study the box and it's seam well before you attempt this. The right side firewall connection is your a/c drain hole plastic nipple. The left is more of a pain, it pretty much is plastic tangled between the tubes that come off the heater core through the firewall. I ended up giving up and breaking the plastic cover out of frustration to get it out on driver side. Be careful is all I can suggest. And I do believe Chevy sells a replacement cover if you do end up breaking it (which sucks cause if you do not seal that cover back up good it will weaken the air flow coming out your vents and pretty much roast your feet!). The installation of the heater core is stupid easy once all the hell is gone through to get everything out of the way. The airbag is easy to remove just make sure battery unplugged and there are 2 hidden bolts above the glovebox behind a square of plastic to get to them, then it just lifts out. Search the forum for dash removal under the "DIY"'s in there just a good many pages in....and helped a ton. Hope this helps you. And good luck. I'll try to check back soon to see if you have other questions. I did this job all the way through and works. Heater core was cheaper at the chevy dealer than autozone or advanced for me...spent like $150 for the whole job.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-22-2012, 08:33 PM
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heater cores are a pain in the ass, but worth it doing yourself than paying a shop. simple concept, takes a lot of time. that's my 2 cents.

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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-26-2012, 03:19 PM
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Thanks for your feedback, I am going to attempt it myself. Better than paying a huge amount of money to a garage. Wish Me Luck!
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