Russ' Do It Yourself Home Workshop

Finding Fixes to Just About Anything and Everything

Replace the Heater Hoses on a 1997 Chrysler Sebring Convertible

Posted by Russell Wright on December 8, 2010

While I was replacing my distributor, I found that I had at least one heater hose that was leaking.  Since I had the car apart, I made the decision to replace both of them.  I ordered them through WholesaleMopar.com for what I thought was a reasonable price.  It was actually cheaper than buying hoses from Autozone or NAPA and rigging them to make them work as the hoses they sell don’t have the clip-on ends (they sell the clip-on ends separately, which are about $8-$10 each).

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In order to get to the hoses where they attach at the firewall to the heater core, you need to remove the intake plenum.  Seems like you have to remove the intake plenum to get to just about everything on this car.  Luckily, it’s not quite as bad as it seems.  But it does take some time.  One of the trickiest steps is removing the two bolts on the left and right back sides that bolt the plenum to the brackets.  You can see in some of these photos the wrench arrangement I used to accomplish this.  Thank goodness for swivel sockets and long extensions!

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Getting the hoses off was…how do you say…not easy.  The first one wasn’t too bad, but it still took a lot of squeezing of the retainer clip and twisting with pliers to get the not-so-quick disconnect to release.  I found that it was just as easy to put a pan underneath the car and catch the coolant as trying to drain coolant from the drain (which only seems to work if it is warm and under pressure).  The back hose was way more difficult.  I had to finally resort to cutting the hose and pretty much destroying the quick connect to get it off.

If you purchase aftermarket replacement hoses from NAPA or Autozone, they don’t come with the quick connects.  I guess they assume you can simply use a standard hose clamp for the replacement hoses.  Probably not a bad idea, since getting these puppies off was way too time consuming!

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After I finally got the hoses off, I cleaned up the ends of the tubes by using 500 grit wet/dry sandpaper and some steel wool.  I also used a small razor knife to scrape some of the crap off the end of the tube.  The rubber from the hose seals was embedded pretty good.  I think I got it looking pretty good!

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Here where the hoses connect to the heater core at the firewall.  These use standard spring loaded clamps, but it’s still kinda’ tight back there for pliers and such.  There’s a neat tool that you can get that might be helpful for some spring hose clamps.

http://www.astrotools.com/LargerImage.aspx?toolsnum=9409A

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7 Responses to “Replace the Heater Hoses on a 1997 Chrysler Sebring Convertible”

  1. brent cloud said

    Quick connect?!?!?! You’ve gotta be kidding!!! These hoses are obviously the result of many intense years of engineering and design study, as the typical four year degree doesn’t afford the stupidity involved in such a rediculously difficult end-user piece. It’s quaint the designer of the removal “tool” saw fit to attach his name to his invention…tool. Shadetree it and buy yourself some 5/8 inch heater hose and a set of clamps. This is one time where simpler is definitely better and more effective. Geeze, we are in serious trouble as a country

  2. Rick Troublefield said

    I guess thats why they’re called quick “connect” instead of quick “disconnect”. Evidently somebody’s idea of a joke. One of the dumbest things I’ve seen in a while. I usually avoid Mitsubishi because they love to leak vital fluids, but my daughter had to have this damn convertible. Great looking automobile but I do tend to see a lot of them parked in back yards.

    • Russell Wright said

      I’ve got to say that I’m the original owner and haven’t had many problems. That being said, it is now over 15 years old and things do have a tendancy to get old and frail. I just did my water pump again…because I used a cheap aftermarket (NAPA) one the first time, replacing one that wasn’t bad. This time, however, I replaced it with an OEM pump…Paraut. $125, but it’s the whole pump, not just the front part with the impeller.

      • marcpilot1 said

        The quick connects were so somebody could make money later selling a tool to get them back off? These engineers got to be sitting in their offices laughing at all the things they could do to mechanics and diy’ers. If only there was someone who would oversee their blatant idiocies and prevent them from being allowed to do that kind of stuff, like before it gets out the door of the offices. What a bunch of mengineerons. (morons that are somehow classified as engineers)

  3. marcpilot1 said

    The quick connects were so somebody could make money later selling a tool to get them back off? These engineers got to be sitting in their offices laughing at all the things they could do to mechanics and diy’ers. If only there was someone who would oversee their blatant idiocies and prevent them from being allowed to do that kind of stuff, like before it gets out the door of the offices. What a bunch of mengineerons. (morons that are somehow classified as engineers)

    • Russell Wright said

      Yeah, those quick connects are “quick” for the factory and that’s about it. Even though I replaced them with factory hoses, most purchase the hoses that use a traditional hose clamp. That’s what I’ll probably do…next time. Which should be about 2024.

  4. rich k said

    So are there any tips to getting the quick connects to open up for removal without buying a special tool?

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