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Freeze plug removal

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by Mastiff, Feb 26, 2005.

  1. Mastiff

    Mastiff 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    How the heck do you get a freeze plug out? From what I've read it's like "just hit one side in and it'll pivot so you can grab the other side with pliers". Yeah right. So far I've pounded like three holes through the thing and the edges have not budged. I even found a little tiny pry bar and got it into a hole and pulled with all my might with about 8" of leverage. All I can do is slowly mutilate the boundaries of the existing holes. Any suggestions? I fairly frustrated wallowing in a puddle of filthy coolant and making no progress. Not to mention that my wife'll be pissed if the truck is immobile and taking up the whole garage.
     
  2. crazy_swede_73

    crazy_swede_73 Registered Member

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    Takes time and muscle! took me about an hour to remove one freeze plug on a -92 Volvo.
    I drilled hole in it and use a thin and long pipe to pry it out.
     
  3. RustBuket

    RustBuket 1/2 ton status

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    Its really hard when its in the vehicle. You need a socket or something that will fit just inside the plug to spread the force over the whole thing so you don't punch holes in it. It takes a good wack and then once it does start moving in then you have to hit it with something smaller to get it to pivot. If not, the thing falls inside and then its *really* tough to get it out.
     
  4. big83chevy4x4

    big83chevy4x4 3/4 ton status

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    i always use a 3/8 drive extention, its got a blunt enough tip that it won't punch holes. if you do knock it all the way inside, try to hold it up with a screw driver and pull it out with pliers.
     
  5. mrk5

    mrk5 The Sticker Guy Moderator Vendor GMOTM Winner Author

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    I feel your pain, literally.


    I spent 4 hours trying to get one out a month or so ago. I gave up, and my father-in-law got it out in about 30min. He said I just didn't have the right tools.:smirk:
     
  6. Mastiff

    Mastiff 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Oh man. My father in law also helped me. Took longer than 30 minutes though. The thing was down to almost just a ring with the whole center missing. Finally got lucky and I saw it slide a little while he was pounding a large screwdriver at the edge of it. We rocked it back and forth by pounding with the screwdriver then using a pry bar against the block and pushing with a foot.

    Finally one side started to go in so he pounded on it while I held a long screwdriver in there in case it popped in. It did pop in, but we could pry it out using a pry bar and some vice grips.

    What a pain. I should take a picture of the plug so you guys can laugh at it.

    Then getting the heater in was way harder than expected too. We ended up getting a pice of wood and pounding it in place. I'm still not sure if it's in as far as it's supposed to go, but so far it's not leaking.

    If you are thinking about installing a freeze plug heater, consider a heater hose style one instead!
     
  7. mrk5

    mrk5 The Sticker Guy Moderator Vendor GMOTM Winner Author

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    Which one did you get. I got mine from Carquest and I thought mine was too loose. Mine hasn't leaked either, but I haven't had a lot of road time to try it out.
     
  8. Mastiff

    Mastiff 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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  9. mrk5

    mrk5 The Sticker Guy Moderator Vendor GMOTM Winner Author

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    Thanks. I'll check that out. I really don't trust the one I have now. The instructions said the hole was supposed to be chamfered and mine wasn't. I sure in the hell wasn't going to start all over again after all that work.


    I did the freeze plug heater because I didn't like the heater hose tank heater that I had. Maybe you're right and I should have stuck with that one.:crazy:
     
  10. 3 on the tree

    3 on the tree 1/2 ton status

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    Next time try a large brass drift pin punch and a 2# hammer. Keep hitting the edge in the same spot and it will give eventually. Anything made of steel is not a good idea. It can gouge the block and cause a leak, don't ask me how I learned this!
     
  11. Mastiff

    Mastiff 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Next time? :haha:

    Well, who knows, maybe. Not any time soon though. I'll have to forget this pain first.

    Can anyone say whether it shouldhave been so hard to get the heater in? I was kind of nervous about pounding it in when the instructions just said "push". Even so, there are some little "ears" around the heater that kind of seemed like they ought to go flush with the block and they didn't get that far. Anyone know if they should go flush?
     

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