HEATER PROBLEMS

  • Tiny
  • Amanda McGuire
  • 2001 Saturn SC1
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • automatic
  • 81,500 miles

Why doesn't my heater work in the winter? My heater didn't work last winter and since then I have replaced the thermostat 3 times, I replaced the temperature and cooling sensors twice, and had my everything cleaned out since it was plugged up with debris. After that, this summer I had heat, but now that it is cold again, the heat is hardly warm and the blower only works on the highest speed in heat mode. My mechanic is puzzled why it worked when I didn't need it to and now that it is cold, nothing works. My front defroster takes a long to work. I let my car warm up for 10 minutes in the morning and then I drive 30 minutes to school and still no heat! Help!

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Sunday, December 5th, 2010 AT 7:14 AM

23 Replies

  • Tiny
  • rasmataz
  • Member

Check if the heater core is clogged-up and the air blend door/actuator

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Sunday, December 5th, 2010 AT 7:54 AM
  • Tiny
  • Amanda McGuire
  • Member

I just had the heater core unclogged in May. That was the first time I ever had to do that. How could it get clogged up again in a few months when it was fine for the last six years without being cleaned? When I use the vent to cool, I have enough air, it just doesn't have enough when I put it in heat mode. What does the actuator control?

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Sunday, December 5th, 2010 AT 9:03 AM
  • Tiny
  • saturntech9
  • Expert
  • 29,852 posts

The blend door for the temp control is cable operated on that model. All you have to do is slide the temp control from cold to hot and make sure the arm of the door is moving. Also check and see if both hoses going into the heater core are hot that way you know you have flow thru the heater core. The single overhead engine like you have is known for the head cracking and keaking oil into the coolant that could clogged the heater core. Check and make sure your oil doesnt look like choclate milk.

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Sunday, December 5th, 2010 AT 4:10 PM
  • Tiny
  • Amanda McGuire
  • Member

The heater core was plugged up again for the second time in 5 months. What can be done to prevent this from happening over and over again? I didn't have any problems for 6 years and my other Saturn didn't have this problem. They didn't find any problems with the oil. I was told by the mechanic who looked at my car that this could be an ongoing problem.I am not going to keep paying for this problem. I want to know how to fix it. Thanks!

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Thursday, December 9th, 2010 AT 8:11 PM
  • Tiny
  • saturntech9
  • Expert
  • 29,852 posts

That's not a common problem for those car's. So what did they find clogging it up?The only thing I can think of that clog's the heater core up on that model is a cracked head that leak's oil into the coolant but you said that wasn't the case. So what did the guy suggest that is going to continue to keep clogging it?

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Thursday, December 9th, 2010 AT 8:42 PM
  • Tiny
  • Amanda McGuire
  • Member

They didn't tell me. They just said a lot stuff came out of it. He told me of a similar problem with a truck he's looked at. He said they have to bring it in and get it blown out every couple of months. I wrote down what you told me and he said that every thing is fine. I don't trust that, but since Saturn closed, it is hard to find someone to fix my car right. It took them 3 months and cost me over 800 hundred dollars just on a idle problem. I had the coolant flushed and they said it looked normal. All I know is that I shouldn't have to bring back my car to them every couple of months because they can't find the problem. Saturn always fixed my car right the first time. I have been going to this Chevy dealer because they are supposed to certified in Saturns now, but I been going back and forth to them since May and it"s cost me hundreds!

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Thursday, December 9th, 2010 AT 10:50 PM
  • Tiny
  • saturntech9
  • Expert
  • 29,852 posts

Sorry I just saw your reply you shouldn't have to keep having to flush the heater core out. You have a bad heater core or something in the system that need's to be replaced. If it keep's getting clogged every couple of month's hard to say since i'm not there to see what's going on.I have never seen a saturn do that I would get a second opinion though.

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Wednesday, December 15th, 2010 AT 9:12 PM
  • Tiny
  • jtw37
  • Member

My son's Saturn is doing about the same thing. He changed the t-stat and it didn't change. I took the new old one and tested in a pan of water with a thermometer and it worked fine at the temp is was supposed too. Could it be possible, if the core is clogged by radiator or heater hose collapsing from the inside or flaking off debris?

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Monday, January 10th, 2011 AT 12:01 PM
  • Tiny
  • saturntech9
  • Expert
  • 29,852 posts

On your saturn not son's you may have to just replace the heater core itself it could be just coming apart inside and clogging itself up. Now on your son's car what year model etc are we talking about?

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Monday, January 10th, 2011 AT 6:36 PM
  • Tiny
  • jtw37
  • Member

It is a 99 SE, 3 door, I think he said.

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Tuesday, January 11th, 2011 AT 1:06 AM

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