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Heater Matrix change - Lower Dash removal Info.
removing lower dash trim, and replacing heater Matrix
Published by varesecrazy
07-12-2013
Difficulty Level: 3

User Rated:Unrated

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Heater Matrix change - Lower Dash removal Info.



Mystery coolant loss = DAMP Carpets

chances are you've got a leaky heater Matrix assembly

I had these issues,
here is a brief run-through of the job..,

Click image for larger version

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Glove-box ; remove the 4 small TORX screws from the upper and lower corners of the glovebox surround, then the LARGE torx at the Upper REAR of the glovebox itself.

carefully bring the glovebox unit forward out of the dash = BEWARE the wiring to the Airbag switch will get in the way..




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accessing Matrix Click image for larger version

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the matrix plumbing ( flow + return ),
runs in 2 rigid BLACK plastic tubes from the engine bay along the passenger footwell side of the heater box,
there are 3 x small GOLD coloured HEX headscrews ( 5.5MM) on a plastic panel shaped like a "XMAS Stocking" (look on ePER for a better view) !

there are electrics strapped to the back of it.. I left them alone - just removed 1 loom clip just above the matrix.. - you'll see !!


draining matrix Click image for larger version

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drain coolant from Radiator ( under bonnet) open bleed screw on hose behind airfilter,
and have the heater set to MAX / HOT,

the Matrix is bolted to the 2 x rigid tubes with a single 8MM Hex-head bolt - (you will see the captive nut ) on the mating flange,
remove bolt and swing the flange toward the LHS of the car - with a bowl underneath

if the rest of the system is pre-drained then only a cup full will come out of the Matrix union.

Removing matrix Click image for larger version

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this is the tricky part:

I found that with the 3 x GOLD screws removed you can slide the matrix out ( like a cassette) for around 1/3 of it's length BUT the BLACK plastic Manifold part will catch in the fixing for the Lower DASH,

this is why I removed the Glovebox, as it aids the flexibility of the lower DASH area..,

I used a hand with a strong protective glove on to pull the lower dash Outwards - to REAR of car , as you slide out the Matrix from the heater box,
tilting it as it comes out = this is tricky AND you'll risk pinching the hand between the dash and the matrix = However the Matrix then withdraws enough to tilt further and access is no longer an issue

an assistant "MAY" be helpful here..BUT access is limited( how many people can you fit in a FIAT footwell..??)

the Matrix uses a rubber seal ( like an O-ring - but Flat) on each tube entry
be careful not to displace or damage the seal - hanging it on the tube is easier then tucking it into the manifold ( I dropped one from the manifold..) didn't notice until I'd bolted everything up..

this job was covered in a thread dated DEC 2013, other useful hints may be found in there,

i'll do a second GUIDE detailing the actual Dash-trim removal ( around the gear knob),
and Sills for lifting the carpets/ insulation

have fun,
Charlie
Thanks A3jeroen, dave thanked for this post
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Old 11-12-2013   #1
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Re: Heater Matrix change - Lower Dash removal Info.

The one surefire way to confirm a leaking matrix is to place some sheets of white A4 paper under and around the area where the heater is.

I did this on my old Punto and next day found some blue spotting on the paper.
On those its a dash out job so I wanted to be certain the matrix was leaking.
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Old 12-12-2013   #2
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Re: Heater Matrix change - Lower Dash removal Info.

a fair idea, not always possible - depending on dash layout,
Mk 2 panda is under the bonnet - if it leaks it dumps coolant on the ground.
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Old 19-12-2016   #3
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Thanks for making this guide it has been a great help to me. Never the les i ran into a problem and perhaps you have some advice. When i insert the new heater matrix i am not able to click it inside the clamps. Weird part is i tried it with the old one and it won't go in anymore. Any ideas?
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Old 30-01-2017   #4
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Re: Heater Matrix change - Lower Dash removal Info.

if you need more info regarding the gearchange gaiter,

click on this link to @tarbyonline http://www.fiatforum.com/gallery/sho...hp?photo=78543

Charlie
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