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In 1998 I bought a Triumph Herald 13/60, here you can read about it's restoration and share in a few photo's from it's travels. Please feel free to leave comments to any of the posts, of even email me if you want to.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Heater Fan/Blower

A few years back I decided I needed to use the Herald more, so it's now driven just as much as my daily driver for local journeys. This means that it gets out in all weathers, including cold, wet conditions, so I have experimented with the odd modification to assist. In a recent article I wrote about adding/re-doing the intermittent wiper control, but one modification I didn't write about (because it didn't work very well) was to change the heater fan/blower to one from a more modern vehicle.

Now when I tried this first time a couple of years ago, the only reference I could find on the web was someone who had used a blower from a VW Polo/Golf. On the face of it, it seemed a good option as it was a 3 speed motor and fitted well within the Smith's heater box. What I didn't realise until I was just about to reassemble everything, was that the fan span in the opposite direction as the Herald one. Unsurprisingly the end result was little more than a trickle of air out of the vents on the dash, much like the original fan, it did little to clear the fog on the inside of the screen on damp days. There was no point in trying get it to spin in reverse as the blades are angled for one direction only.

Fast forward to a few weeks ago and I was killing time on eBay so thought I'd look for a suitable alternative, I ended up deciding on one from a 1994 Nissan Micra. Single speed only, but was narrow enough to fit inside the heater box and equally as important it span in the same direction as the Herald motor; with the seller just 6 miles away, it was meant to be. Advertised at £10.00, I made an offer of £5.00 and we settled on £7.50. So now to the (not so) techie bit.

eBay Purchase
Drain enough coolant to empty the heater matrix, remove the heater valve & hoses, disconnect the 2 wires from the blower, remove the 4 clips that hold on the front of the heater box and separate from the rest of the heater box.

Remove the existing fan/blower, put the replacement one over hole and position to get the best fit. You will now see that the hole isn't big enough, so mark around the fan to indicate where you need to cut. I used an air nibbler and then a die grinder to enlarge mine, but hacksaws, files etc. will do the same thing. Once you have it fitting well, mark the 3 mounting holes and using an appropriate sized bit, drill the holes.

Hole enlarged and mounting holes drilled

Trial Fit
I was fortunate in that I had a spare heater box so I could do this without taking apart the one on my car, I could also keep trial fitting it to ensure the fan didn't touch anything it shouldn't. I took the opportunity to repaint the front of the heater box, plus to make it look a little more like original I painted the replacement blower silver. Now you can bolt the blower to the front panel and refit to the main part of the heater box. Put everything back together and refill the cooling system.

New blower in situ'
This just leaves the wiring to do, as it's a single speed motor it's just 2 wires  it's very simple (mine came with the connector and wiring pigtails), it's just a live and earth. Do ensure you get the live and earth the right way round though, otherwise it will spin the wrong way and you don't want that!

After being so disappointed with the first time I tried this mod, this time round I was really pleased. There is now a healthy airflow at the windscreen vents and on the first journey after fitting it was a cold, damp day but within a mile the screen was clearing nicely and another mile it was completely clear.

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