Installing a rear heater from Scratch - Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum
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post #1 of 3 Old 10-12-2012, 09:28 PM Thread Starter Rookie
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Installing a rear heater from Scratch

Hi recently bought a 2000 E-350 with a 7.3 Diesel. I'm going to build it out into a camper van. Right now its completely empty and did not have a rear heater installed. I'm living in the Pacific Northwest where it is cold damp and rainy and am considering installing a Ford factory rear heater. I have searched all over the forums and web and can find info on repairs but not on a new install. Iím not concerned with having rear AC. I have found a rear heater (with AC) out of a 99 passenger van with gas motor. I plan to have the heater just basically unducted because I donít have the headliner with the controls or ducting. I realize that I need get the controls with the dual fan controls (front and rear) for the dash.
I have a couple question I was hoping to get some input on.

First, if I remove the wiring harness out of the passenger van, where it runs back to the heater will it plug into my existing wiring harness? Meaning did my E350 come prewired to accommodate a rear heating unit. Basically plug and play?

Second, how difficult are the antifreeze connections to make on a 7.3 diesel compared to a gas engine.

Third, when looking at the passenger van I see that the existing antifreeze(and Freon lines) looked pretty rotted out. So Im wondering if I can just run rubber hose all the way from the rear heater to the engine.

Hope to get some input on this before I learn the hard way. Thanks

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post #2 of 3 Old 10-13-2012, 06:50 AM
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I had a work van that started out as a 15 pass van with rear heat and A/C, which I mostly removed to install shelving. I left the heater core and A/C unit behind the shelves because I didn't want to deal with the Freon and coolant lines, but removed all the ducting and fan motors...

It did have dual fan speed switches on the dash, one front and one rear... both on the dash in the factory location.

I would recomend using hard pipe, not rubber lines, for the longer sections from front to rear for the coolant, and just use rubber where the flexibility is needed. You'll get less expantion under pressure, and less likelyhood of a burst hose. I don't remember how the lines hooked up under the hood, but I would guess you could 't' into the lines going to the front heater core, but might want to install something to force equal flow to each, otherwise you'll have good flow to the front one (shorter tubeing, less resistance) and not so much to the rear, as it's farther away. I would try a ball valve in each feed line, at the 't', and partially open/close each to adjust flow... crude, but it would work, you'd have to adjust them untill it works right. My guess is one will end up all the way open, and the other slightly closed, you'll just have to figure it out.


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post #3 of 3 Old 11-03-2012, 08:52 PM Thread Starter Rookie
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So I got the rear heater out of the 1999 passenger van and also took the wiring harness from where it plugs into the main wiring harness near the drivers side seat belt base. I also found a dual fan(front and read) AC/Heater controller on ebay because the van I took the rear heater out off was already gone.

I installed the AC/Heater controller switch in the dash and hook up the 1999 wire harness into my OEM harness. At first the fan did not work but then I determined that the blower fan was bad. After replacing it the fan now works at all three speeds. Becasue I used the 1999 harness I had to use that harnes for the taillights, and rear dome light. It was easy enough to replace all this. took about 30 min.

Now Im readly to deal with the antifreeze lines. I have downloaded every PSD manuel that I could find on here and on other sites but it seems that none have the section I need to locate where to tap the rear heater lines into the 7.3 antifreeze/coolent system.

In some of the junk yard Ive been to I have seen GAS passenger vans but am afriad that the systems are not comparable. Diesel passenger vans are hard to come by in the junk yards.

Can someone please provide the diagram I need or some pics of their system? Its cold up here! haha
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