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Your heater core still has air blocks in it so the core does not heat up.

You need to bleed air out of the cooling system with the heater OFF to stress heat the engine block so it will heat up quickly and open the thermostat and coolant pump to pump coolant from radiator into engine block.

After bleeding all air out, turn on the heater to see if it's hot. If it does not heat up, there are still air pockets in the coolant, or there leaks or klockages preventing hot coolant to heat up the core.
 

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For dumping coolant quicker

Turn the cabin heater on to open the heater core.

It's easier and faster to open the radiator's exit hose at the bottom.

There is also an engine block's drain plug at the back, bottom, middle of the engine block, below the exhaust manifold. If you jack up the car 6 inches and crawl under, you should be able to access it. With both drains open, you will have most of the old coolant drained from the car.

The car should be raised on solid stands or block, not jacks, so it wont collapse and sits flat on your face.
 

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3 easy drains to remove engine coolant

Have the cabin heater control on the ON position.

Open the cap on top of the white plastic reservoir bottle on top of the radiator.

Position a big box with trash bag lining under the radiator then engine block to collect used coolant.

1. Open the radiator's exit hose at the bottom passenger's side. Use a vice grip or pair of pliers to hold the clamp open to move it. This will drain about 1 gallon coolant from the radiator.

2. Drain at bottom of engine block near exhaust manifold. You need to have car on lift or raise car about 12 inches on solid stands to go under engine bay to access this drain. Open the 8 mm ( or 10 mm I forgot) bolt at the bottom. This will drain everything from the engine block but it is a lot of work and may not be necessary.

These 2 drains will remove about 75 % of the coolant inside the engine block and the radiator. There is No need to access the radiator's butterfly bleed valve at the bottom of the radiator on driver side as it is too hard to access.

Replace and tighten all bolts, then Refill the system with coolant via the plastic reservoir and bleed air. Buy the RED TOYOTA 100% COOLANT then mix half and half with DISTILLED WATER. Dont use TAP WATER as mineral will eventually harden and block coolant lines.

Or you can buy premixed RED TOYOTA COOLANT, more expensive. I always have premixed coolant and 1 gallon distilled water in the garage for topping off when needed.

The radiator's butter fly bleed valve at the bottom of the radiator, driver side, is a pain in the ass to access.

It's easier and faster open a clamp on the large black rubber hose, about 2.5 inch DIA, at the bottom of the radiator, on driver side. Radiator content will dump out quick. The radiator holds about half gallon coolant only.

There is also an engine block's drain plug at the back bottom middle of the engine block. If you jack up the car 6 inches and crawl under, you should be able to access it. With both drains open, you will have most of the old coolant drained from the car.
 

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What is the part of the overflow tank under the bleeder valve supposed to look like after a normal drive? And / or when you're "done" bleeding? I've tried bleeding mine and it stays full & eventually all that seems to come out of the bleeder valve is fluid, no bubbles I can see in the neck of the valve or the fluid. But that part of my reservoir is pretty much constantly full (and sweats a tad after driving a while), and if I open the valve some after it has cooled down, it will still hiss and bubble back down a bit.
 

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That air bleeding chamber should be all coolant after proper bleeding. When running engine at normal temp, there should be no or very little air and only some coolant blown out of the air bleed hole.

All coolant should have trickled down to the reservoir below and any overflow would be dripping out of the small hose on the side of the reservoir.

Does not look like your coolant system was bled correctly.

Toyota's manual suggests turning OFF heater, draining the radiator by opening the butterfly drain valve at the bottom of the radiator on driver side via the 1 mm hose down through the bottom cover, which is a pain to get to. It's quicker to open the clamp on the 2 -inch rubber hose at the bottom of the radiator on passenger side and drain it. Also drain coolant in the engine block by raising the car and open the 8 mm bolt at the bottom of the block, under the exhaust manifold. 95% of the coolant will be drained by these 2 drains. The 5% left is probably in the heater's core.

Fill coolant into the engine block with about 7/8 gallon via the overflow reservoir. The reservoir should be unbolted, 2 x 1 mm rubber bleed hoses disconnected. raised and sit on top of the hood's hook, about the same height as the head. Stop feeding coolant into the reservoir when coolant starts trickling out of the air bleed hose, or fluid remains at full cold level in the reservoir. The radiator will need about 3/10 gall coolant more.

When block is filled, return the reservoir to its mounting place, bolt it down and connect the 2x 1 mm bleed hoses. Run the engine alternately between idle to about 3000 RPM until engine gets hot, turns on vent fan, and open the thermostat and send coolant from radiator into engine block. Wait for fan to stop. Keep reservoir filled with coolant to the full hot level. Coolant will be sucked from the reservoir into engine block and pumped into the radiator. If the reservoir is empty, air will be sucked into the block, requiring more bleeding. Add the rest of the 1/3 gal coolant into the reservoir.

Close the main cap and the butterfly valve. Run engine alternating idle to 3000 RPM every minute to bleed air out. Squeeze the radiator's 2-inch rubber hoses to help it. Air in coolant bubbles should blow from air bleed hose into reservoir. When no more air and/or coolant bubbles are blown into reservoir, cooling system is buebed of all air and bleeding is complete .

Monitor the engine temp gauge constantly. Once in a while the engine temp may shoot up to the red overheat zone. It's just a hot air pocket being driven past the temp sensor. To be safe, turn off engine , wait 5 minutes and restart. Over temp should be gone. Continue to bleed until no more air and / or coolant bubbles come out of air bleed hole. Close off butterfly bleed valve.

It's best to leave the car to cool down overnight. The engine may suck coolant down as it cools. Add coolant to cold full level in the reservoir in the morning.

You are done, but should monitor the engine temp gauge and coolant level in the reservoir in the next couple trips. Add coolant to reservoir if the level fall below the lines when engine is hot or cool. When the coolant system is bled properly the coolant level is exactly on those lines. Any excess coolant is dripped out the side.

If engine temp stays in red overheat zone, you have a very serious problem that could crack engine block. Shut off engine and check for any possible blockage of the coolant flow in both engine block and radiator.

If engine overheats, coolant lines may be blocked by calcium in hard water. You may need to clean and clear the coolant system with calcium-dissolving chemicals.
 

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Yeah, I replaced the thermostat and drained from the petcock on the lower radiator before I filled. Jacked the front end of the car up, had the tank mounted on the hood latch with all hoses attached, had a friend rev with the heat on, was massaging all of the hoses as I was doing it. My level in the tank hasn't changed noticably and at no point has my car reached the last notch before overheating, be it bleeding or driving.

Seemed like bubbles and fluid came out at the beginning, but now just fluid comes out when I try. Not sure if I just need to keep doing it and keep letting fluid come out until it eventually doesn't fill up in that chamber anymore. I mean, it seems like it's making it from radiator to the block round trip fine.
 

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If only coolant fluid come out of that 1/4 inch bleed hose into the chamber, then there is no more air in the system.

If coolant level in the reservoir is where it should be and engine temp is at mid point on the gauge, then the cooling system is optimum and you are done.
 

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Ended up being I still have a very small sweat coming from the radiator drain. That petcock is a royal PITA, I even made a socket out of wood with a hole through it so I could get an allen wrench on it to tighten, still not tight enough I guess. I have a replacement radiator too though.
 

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You can see and turn the petcock valve from the top, by removing the top of the air box, the air filter, then the air box bottom with all related hoses all connectors.

Take a video as you take apart the air box, so you can remember where every thing goes. There are a few vacuum hoses at the bottom of the airbox that if you forget, the engine runs jerky. That airbox fits precisely into a very tight spot, but if you do enough think instead of forcing or breaking it can be removed and reassembled in about 2 to 3 hours the first time, depending on how smart and clever you are. It should be a lot quicker the second time.

Looks like the sweat may have been caused by stripped threads on the petcock. Wrap the threads with Teflon tape to seal leak, or buy a new petcock.


Ended up being I still have a very small sweat coming from the radiator drain. That petcock is a royal PITA, I even made a socket out of wood with a hole through it so I could get an allen wrench on it to tighten, still not tight enough I guess. I have a replacement radiator too though.
 

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The broken 1/4 inch air bleed nipple.

I had a small leak from the radiator but could not find where. Finally I removed the air box, which fits precisely in a very tight spot with 6 vacuum hoses hooked up to it. It was a pain to figure out where everything goes and how they fit together. But after the first time it should be easy.

Found out the tiny 1/4 inch plastic air bleed nipple, molded as part of the ABS plastic top of the radiator, had broken clear off, bleeding out coolant. I never pulled too hard on the bleed hose, but after hundred thousands of hot and cold cycles, that joint cracked and finally broke. I could see the old crack lines which may have started years ago. But it never leaked until now.

Lucky I caught it, or it could be very damaging if broken out at high speed. It was a very stupid design not to reinforce that joint.

BMW and MBZ use the same close radiators, so they have the same nipple. Apparently a lot do break. Autozone has no repair kit. Ebay has lots of folks selling the repair nipples, made of plastic or brass, between $10 to $15.

The plastic nipple looks like a push-in with self-sealing rubber seal. It looks very loose and weak. I dont see how it can seal under pressure and high temp.

The brass nipple has threads that you are supposed to drill out a bigger hole, then smear the threads with JB Weld and screw it in, making its own threads, which probably works OK for older copper/brass or even aluminum radiators, but if used on plastic it will probably leak soon, because at high temperature plastic expands at much higher rate than brass and will stretch the JB weld joint.

So I went to the Ace hardware store nearby. They have a large inventory of screws, nuts, bolts ect... Aluminum, brass, steel and stainless-steel, in both English and Metric. The showed me 1/4 inch nipples in both brass and plastic. I bought a plastic repair nipple for $1.60, made of a very hard, clear plastic, very hard, like ABS.

Used a sharp drill bit, gouging the hole bigger by hand while trying to remove the plastic debris out of the radiator. Quicker to use a power drill, but some of the debris will fall inside. For a tight fit, I coated one end of the nipple with 2-part epoxy then hammered it in the hole. It fits great.

I coated a Teflon tape in epoxy and wrapped it around the base of the joint to make sure the joint is strong and seal properly. When cured in 24 hours, the epoxy is supposed to be harder and stronger than most thermo plastics. I gave it 2 days to cure to make sure.

The nipple works great. I put the airbox back ( dont forget all those loose hoses and connectors), drain the radiator of any possible plastic debris, filled the engine with coolant and burp air out of the radiator. I checked all hoses and the entire radiator many times with a very bright LED spot light. The video camera on flexible fiber can also reach into inaccessible crevices.

There wer no leaks. The radiator draining and burping procedure works logically and perfectly the first time, taking only about 2 hours. When you understand how the system is designed to work, and find it working logically, then you feel assured and have confidence in the system.

Anyway I think my plastic nipple glued in with epoxy is plenty strong. I would check for leaks from that area frequently every time I open the hood just to make sure it does not leak. If it does leak, I can remove the airbox fairly quickly and make the repair.

Since there are a lot of repair nipples on sale in eBay, looks like BMWs and MBZs also have a lot of broken nipples. I urge the bros to take the time to take out the airbox and inspect/repair this nipple to prevent leaks and engine damages.

Toyota dealer wants $400 for a new radiator. I told the guy I can buy after market radiator for about $100. He said the aftermarket radiator may only last 1 year then have to be replaced. I dont believe him. I no longer trust their flimsy plastic-top radiator. I used after-market radiators on other cars and they worked reliably for years.

Apparently Toyota uses KOYORAD radiator as original equipment. You can find KOYORAD all-aluminum radiator in eBay for $95. Make them sign a lifetime warranty and hold them liable if it leaks.
 

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The car should be level on tires, not jacked up on front end..

If you jack up the front end, the radiator will be higher than the head, the coolant level and air bleeding wont be accurate.


Yeah, I replaced the thermostat and drained from the petcock on the lower radiator before I filled. Jacked the front end of the car up, had the tank mounted on the hood latch with all hoses attached, had a friend rev with the heat on, was massaging all of the hoses as I was doing it. My level in the tank hasn't changed noticably and at no point has my car reached the last notch before overheating, be it bleeding or driving.

Seemed like bubbles and fluid came out at the beginning, but now just fluid comes out when I try. Not sure if I just need to keep doing it and keep letting fluid come out until it eventually doesn't fill up in that chamber anymore. I mean, it seems like it's making it from radiator to the block round trip fine.
 

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Having problems with heating. Car runs at normal operating temperature. Perform bleeding method to a tee. Everything is fine. Car blows hot air threw the cabin vents for ten seconds, then the hot air becomes warm air. Turn heater off for ten seconds, turn heater back on and hot air for ten seconds, then back to warm air. I can repeat this over and over. Air is getting nice and hot, but keeps going back to warm after ten seconds. I have ran cleaning fluids four times threw the system. I have spliced into the heater core lines and flushed it out. I cannot fix this issue. No leaks. Car does not overheat, ever. The only thing I haven't touched is the thermostat. Could the thermostat cause this problem? Please help. Have had the car for twenty years. And tens years of no heat. Help
 

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Check that the hot-cold blend door on the heater box under the dash is still attached to the switch cable and is not freely opening and closing with gravity and motion.
 
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