Heater core delete, early cooling system question


I have an 87 is with early cooling system that still has heater core and all hoses. Runs fine, but I want to remove the core before it pukes on my feet. Have read every thread I could find about this, but for the life of me, I can’t find any info on how to get to the port on the back of the head to install a block off plate while the head is installed. I can’t even see back there, much less figure out how to remove the hose and barb, and then install the block off plate.

Do I remove the piece covering the blower motor to make room from above? Does not really look like that adds much room, but it may be deceiving looking at it all intact.

I would like to do the block off plate, and also remove the TB hoses and install my OP switch in the block for a coolant pressure warning light, but I do not want to start pulling stuff apart unless I see a path.

If I can’t get back there with the head installed, is there another path that would allow me to remove the core and deal with all the hoses later when I have a reason to remove the head? I have read all of the "“loop vs block off” posts I can find, and what seems to make the most sense if I can’t get to the back of the head is to block off the short hose that runs from the back of the head, and the Tstat housing of course.



Just worked on my car, pulling the intake will give you the most space and doesn’t take longer then 1 hour. This will allow you to play around and access all the cooling & also the location for the pressure sensor.

Honestly, Rather then blocking it off, you could just use a hose and block it off that way, maybe add a 1/4 turn and loop it. That way if you need to bleed your engine, you could just open it and run it like you had the core at full open.


I’ll take the other tack.

Totally remove the whole hose from the rear of the head. Leaving little stub hoses around is just asking for trouble. One of those short hose stubs will develop a weakspot, sight-unseen, and it will start pissing water in a race. 5 laps later your engine is a boat anchor. My engine #5 went this route.

The little pipe at the rear of the head will come off easily enough. Quit yer whining and apply more tenacity. Get back there with a little 10mm wrench, the kind that ratchets, and it’s just 2 6mm bolts.

Then you can either fab a metal block off using the pipe as a template, or you can buy a block off. I’ll go looking and see if I can find the kit.

The block the hose at it’s other end where it goes into the thermostat housing. Lots of ways to skin that cat. But block the actual tstat housing port. Get into the port and abrade away a little AL so you’ve got a good mating surface. Then glue something in with JBWeld or similar. Then, if you want, you can put a stub of hose over that and block the hose off, as a 2nd layer of certainty.

You have a coolant pressure switch, right? That will give you warning of any problems in the years that follow.

Having that hose removed from the back of the block will make anything you do back there easier. It’s a win. In the next 5yrs you’ll have a half dozen opportunities to exclaim “dang, I’m glad I had more room behind the head”.



Thanks all, agree that removing as many hoses as possible is the way to go. Guess I just have to try harder to get back there.