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Heater Control Valve Replacement Cost

The average cost for a Heater Control Valve Replacement is between $139 and $230. Labor costs are estimated between $61 and $78 while parts are priced between $78 and $152. Estimate does not include taxes and fees.
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How Much Does a Heater Control Valve Replacement Cost?

Heater Control Valve Replacement Service and Cost

What is a heater control valve?

The heater control valve is used to regulate the amount of hot engine coolant that can enter the heater core. This is what moderates the amount of heat in the cabin when the heater is in use.

How does the heater control valve work?

As engine coolant flows through the heater core inlet hose, the heater control valve either allows coolant to flow, or stops it completely. When little, or no coolant flows into the heater core, the air from the vents will remain cool. When the valve opens, allowing a large volume of coolant to flow into the heater core, the air will turn very warm. The valve is regulated by the temperature control dial or slide in the cabin.

Can I drive with a heater control valve problem?

If the heater control valve is leaking, it is not advised to drive the vehicle as overheating can result from any coolant leak. In this situation, towing the vehicle to a repair facility is the best course of action. When the heater control valve is simply unresponsive, it will not affect drivability in any way, but passenger comfort may be negatively affected.

How often do heater control valves need to be replaced?

Heater control valve failure is more common now than in the past. These parts are installed on many older vehicles, and most of those vehicles are high-mileage. The original heater control valve for most vehicles lasts for about 100,000 miles before being replaced. Low-quality replacement heater control valves will more than likely fail much more quickly.

Heater Control Valve Replacement Repair Information

How are heater control valve issues diagnosed?

Heater control valves are easily diagnosed by observing if the valve adjusts when the temperature selector is adjusted. If there is movement at the valve, but no change in heat, the valve will be removed and inspected. The valve may be observed failing to move, or leaking engine coolant. In both cases, the heater control valve is diagnosed as faulty, and replaced with a high-quality or OEM replacement part.

How is a heater control valve replaced?

The heater control valve must be separated from the heater core hoses and control mechanism, which could be a vacuum line or a cable. Then the valve will be removed from the firewall, and replaced. Installation is the reverse of removal, and adjustment may be necessary on cable type actuators. Following the repair, the engine coolant should be filled with the valve open, and the engine coolant system bled until free from air.

RepairPal Recommendations for heater control valve issues

When necessary, the heater core hoses should be replaced, as they are subject to corrosion, and can leak when installed. A thorough cleaning inside the heater hose ends usually helps prevent a leak. This is a great time to check the condition of the coolant. pH level coolant testing strips are available to consumers.

What to look out for when dealing with heater control valve issues

There are many brands of heater control valves, and many are universal. Low-quality heater control valves may fail prematurely, leading to the same repair in the future. Engine coolant should be topped off or replaced with the appropriate type for the vehicle. This information is found in the owner’s manual.

Can I replace the heater control valve myself?

This is a great DIY project. It is low in difficulty, and there are very few tools required. The novice DIYer should beware of hot engine coolant, and let the vehicle cool before attempting this repair. It is necessary for the engine coolant to be properly bled of air to prevent overheating. Trusting a technician with the repair is the best course of action the engine cooling system is not understood, or the diagnosis is unclear.

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