OK, so my heater core in my 2000 Chevrolet Cavalier went out this past winter. To have it replaced by a professional was upwards of $500 which I did not have, nor if I did I would not want to pay. I’ve always been a “Do-It-Yourselfer” when at all possible. I decided to take on this 15 hour project myself. Man, was this a LOT of work.

As you can see in the pictures below, I had to do several things that I’ve never done to a vehicle before.

The Battery was disconnected. The Airbags had to be disabled and removed. The Dash had to be complete taken out. To get the dash out, everything on the dash had to be removed first, (radio, temp controls, steering wheel, wiper controls, headlight controls, driver and passenger side airbags). Lots to do!

Then when the dash was removed I thought I was ready to replace the heater core. I was wrong! The steel tubing that supports the dash had to be removed! This was getting crazy. I was starting to see why they charge so much to change out this silly part, the silly part that only cost me $35!

Once everything was removed, I had a little bit of a problem getting the black box that houses the heater core removed, but once I did, the heater core went in with no problem.

Then back to installing all the parts. This was actually the easy part. Getting it back together was a cinch.

The only thing that worried me the whole time in this whole process was the airbags. I guess these are very sensitive and need to be moved very gently. I got them back in and hooked up with no problem, just a little bit of worry.

Look below at my photos to see the before and after. It took some time, but now that it is done, I’m glad I spent only $35 on the part and did this myself!