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C Cab Climatizer heater restorations ..anybody restore them ?

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  • C Cab Climatizer heater restorations ..anybody restore them ?

    I have 4 factory underhood heaters (Climatizer) ( 48-53 C Cabs) that need restored...i believe the cores are good....need pressure check and cleaned of course.

    anybody want to restore them for me? $$

    Dave Stalling
    Newark, Ohio
    614.519.1853 call or text
    email at
    Attached Files
    Last edited by dcstall; 09-09-2019, 12:21 PM.

  • #2
    Dave, these little heaters are pretty simply made without much complication. I believe you can restore them yourself unless you have some kind of job/profession (or disability) that will not allow you to do it. They mainly consist of a metal box, electric fan, heater core, intake, and two avenues of air flow (main heat exhaust, and a flap door/valve for the defroster). Many of us have restored them ourselves. I had to google Newark, Ohio and see that you are pretty much in mid-Ohio. With all the industry & agriculture in those areas, I would be surprised if there are no local radiator shops that could evaluate/check out the heater core. When they were new, our trucks of this era rarely had a cooling system to handle any more than 7 to 14 pounds of pressure. So, I wouldn't want anyone to attempt much of a pressure test unless it was regulated down to very low pressures. My approach to heater cores is to give them a good garden hose flush, and check for a decent rate of flow. Then, fill them with a 50/50 mix of anti-freeze & water, let them sit for a while and check for leaks. If they don't leak, then you should be good to go.

    For the heater box, clean, scrape, or sand the metal and find a good rattle can of primer and Rustoleum (or brand of your choice) paint and have at it. I know I am oversimplifying the procedure, but not too much. One of the most critical parts is the power lead wire for the motor. Most of the old lousy insulation use back then has cracked, frayed, and fallen away, and can expose the bare wire to short against the metal motor casing. What I have done there is to clean up the wire and carefully slide heat shrink tubing over the wire as far inside the motor as I can get it and then shrink it. You might have to use two or three layers until you are satisfied you have enough protection.

    The main thing is to be patient, make pics, sketches, & notes of how it came apart so you can reassemble it the way it came apart. If you don't have the manuals for the vehicle, get them. Overall, by the time you are finished, you will have spent no more money than it would take to pay someone else. But more valuable, will be the satisfaction that comes from the accomplishment of doing your own restoration work.
    John Clary
    Greer, SC

    SDC member since 1975


    • #3
      I like John's approach, except in the UK I sent my heater matrix to get presure tested. It arrived in the UK with water leaking from one of the connections and after I tried a few simple tests, it had to come out.

      The radiator specialists tested the matrix and rang me back to let me know that the tanks at both ends were no good. So, they ended up manufacturing a new / identical replica; not cheap at £225 ($275), but at least the water stays in the matrix.

      My misfortune 10-days later was to have to take the main radiator out. It went to same place and after a flow check, it was found the three cores were perfoming badly. By the time that cam back to me, I down a further £330 ($400)... so ouch! But, all is good on the water front... without wishing ti gip the water pump now!!

      I too got out the sander and in the space of a couple of days had a presentable heater matrix box waiting to go back into the truck. I've attached a before and WIP photo, taken during June.
      Click image for larger version

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      • #4
        I went through mine and converted it to 12 volts while I was at it. As Roy says it is a simple design. I filled the core with water and watched for leaks and then put a bit of pressure to it with a garden hose. So far, it seems to work.
        Attached Files
        "In the heart of Arkansas."
        Searcy, Arkansas
        1952 Commander 2 door. Really fine 259.
        1952 2R pickup


        • #5
          don't forget to put a drop of oil on the motor bushings if needed.
          I cleaned up my climatizer and painted it. works fine. Not a hard task, just a little time consuming.