1957 T-bird Water heater control valve, leaking

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Scotty Mac
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Jul 13, 2019 9:46 am

1957 T-bird Water heater control valve, leaking

Post by Scotty Mac » Sat Jul 13, 2019 10:01 am

Hello,

I am trying to help a senior citizen friend get his 57 T-Bird up and running and he is having an issue with the water heater control valve leaking. I see and old post from 2011 on this site, which I am posting below. I am wondering if this replacement idea is an easy fix for someone with mechanical skills? or if there is an underlying issue I should be looking for? or an easy fix like spraying some WD40 in the old water heater control valve to free it up?

Old Post -"The solution to these heater control valves is to go to a mechanical control valve. The Tbird suppliers have a kit that used the stock temperature control on the dash"

1957Birdman
Posts: 189
Joined: Thu Nov 20, 2014 8:58 am

Re: 1957 T-bird Water heater control valve, leaking

Post by 1957Birdman » Sat Jul 13, 2019 4:33 pm

If the heater control valve is leaking it needs to be replaced with an NOS one, one of the reproductions that the T-Bird parts suppliers have, or with the mechanical conversion that CASCO developed (sold by a number of the parts suppliers). If your friend is not worried about it looking original the mechanical conversion is probably the best way to go and it is less expensive than the reproduction heater control valve.
Regards,
Lew Bachman
1957 Colonial White

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paul2748
Posts: 1191
Joined: Sun Mar 15, 2009 12:23 am
Location: Northeastern New Jersey

Re: 1957 T-bird Water heater control valve, leaking

Post by paul2748 » Sat Jul 13, 2019 9:27 pm

I put the mechanical set-up in my 56 and it's fairly easy to do. The hardest part is connecting the cable to the heater control under the dash. If I remember correctly, the instructions were pretty good.
1956 Fiesta Red 312
1954 Ford Victoria 312
1948 Ford Convertible Street Rod 302

Daddio
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Jul 01, 2019 12:51 pm

Re: 1957 T-bird Water heater control valve, leaking

Post by Daddio » Sun Jul 14, 2019 8:48 am

Over the 30 years I've owned my '56, I've replaced this valve twice. In both cases, the the rubber seal failed on valve causing a leak, the vacuum diaphragms worked fine, so I didn't see any sense in going to a mechanical unit, since it would still have a similar seal on the valve.
The first replacement I used was an NOS unit. It started leaking after only a few years.
The second time I got a brand new unit from a TBird suppliers (name doesn't matter, they all carry the same part) and so far, it has lasted twice as long as the NOS (touch wood). I'm a bit of a stickler for originality, though I drive the car frequently, and these look very good and original.
The reason I went new versus NOS is that, as the name suggests, the NOS has 'old' rubber parts in it and they get brittle.
Mike
1956 TBird
1959 Cadillac Biarritz
Massey Ferguson 165
2005 Lincoln LS
2014 GMC Yukon

Scotty Mac
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Jul 13, 2019 9:46 am

Re: 1957 T-bird Water heater control valve, leaking

Post by Scotty Mac » Sun Jul 14, 2019 1:21 pm

Thanks for the replies! If this part was bad do I need to worry about replacing the thermostats too?

1957Birdman
Posts: 189
Joined: Thu Nov 20, 2014 8:58 am

Re: 1957 T-bird Water heater control valve, leaking

Post by 1957Birdman » Sun Jul 14, 2019 3:45 pm

The short answer is no. If the car is not reaching standard operating temperature or is overheating then you need to look at the thermostat.
Regards,
Lew Bachman
1957 Colonial White

Scotty Mac
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Jul 13, 2019 9:46 am

Re: 1957 T-bird Water heater control valve, leaking

Post by Scotty Mac » Sun Jul 14, 2019 4:42 pm

Thank you! I changed the heater valve and took it for a spin and it didn’t overheat. The temp gauge held steady, no issues.😁

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