I have an 01 2wd X whose heater core just took a dive off a rocky peir at low tide. Temporarily I've bypassed the heater core (Unfortunately, it's Dec. Fortunately, it's So Cal). I've talked to a couple of mechanics about it and one tells me I should make sure to buy an original Nissan heater core, which runs $329 at the dealership. The other tells me, he doesn't think I need to go genuine parts, but he wouldn't go Kragen, O'Reily, Autozone or whatever, low cost parts house carries which run around $66. He suggested I go with whatever Napa is selling since they have higher quality parts.
Has anyone here had an issue with their heater core and replaced it with aftermarket parts? The one told me the cheaper heater cores don't hold up. When I called Napa, they said they guarantee it for 3 years / 36,000 miles. I did find some genuine Nissan parts house selling the heater core for $244. Is it important enough that I need to spend the extra $200 to $250 dollars on the genuine Nissan part or has anyone used the aftermarket and not found any problems with it?
Considering the fact that you have to remove the entire dash to replace it I would only use the Nissan part. I don't ever want to have to replace a heater core....much less do it twice due to a substandard part failing.
Does anyone know about restrictors? If I were to install a restrictor on a cheaper heater core, would it lessen the potential for a blow out of the HC in the futer? I found a guy / shop that's willing to do the labor of the install for $300 and I bring the parts to him. Seems pretty cheap for a job that's fairly simple, but tedious.
If the plastic outlet pipe broke you'll have to buy nissan. I wasnt able to find an aftermarket one with the inlet/outlet pipes. they are screwed on though and if your persistent you can change just the plastic pipe after removing the evaporator core. its a pain in the arse but doable.
There's a how to. Def go with the dealer part, the ones I looked at from autozone, advance and napa seemed very cheap. And I figured if I was pulling my truck apart and putting the time and effort into it I wanted to do it right. Have you given a look at courtesy parts.com? Not sure what Brians price is on the heater core but its worth a look. Hell I have my old core that works perfect, but it has a broken upper hose lol.
Unfortunately, my plastic outlet pipe did break. Though, I've been debating heavily about just going Nissan. I don't want to do it again. It just sucks that the part is as much as the labor, but then again, I'm getting a hell of a deal on the labor. Most shops want between $800 and $1000 for just labor.
Though, I'm also considering not fixing it. Here in So Cal, there's not a lot of need for a heater at all.
i just got through changing out the valve cover gaskets on my 2000. i broke off the plastic heater core inlet hose. all I had to do to repaire it was remove the rubber gromit(spelled wrong im sure) than that left me with plenty of room to attach the hose and clamp it down. I filled the gap with black silicone. cost was only the silicone.
The AutoGuide.com network consists of the largest network of enthusiast-owned enthusiast-operated automotive communities.
AutoGuide.com provides the latest car reviews, auto show coverage, new car prices, and automotive news. The AutoGuide network operates more than 100 automotive forums where our users consult peers for shopping information and advice, and share opinions as a community.