: Radiator Replacement - '97 Deville

12-15-10, 12:24 AM
Pics set 1

12-15-10, 12:27 AM
Set of pics 2

12-15-10, 01:20 AM
I will read it tomorrow and make edits.

Here is my description how to change radiator on Deville '97 (or similar years).

I got my radiator from Autozone for about $150, it has on passenger side connectors for engine oil cooler lines, however, I believe mine is external as seen on one of the pics, I connected nothing to these lines. The driver's side has transmission lines connection that are of a different size than on the original. I did not know that Autozone sold me a radiator without adapters to fit Cadillac that should have been included (seen on the last pic, the yellow thingy). Only by accident I ordered another radiator of the same part number and it came with all the accessories this time. Careful with the adapters, do not over tighten, they are VERY easy to snap in two, seems like they are impossible to buy separately, something no parts store stocks or carries. I had to modify one line to accept a smaller connector ($4 at Autozone) and use transmission rubber line ($4 a foot from O'Reilly's) to connect with ring cramps to a cut original line. I just had no other way but to have the car running that day with such a butcher modification.

Overall steps (I did this without disconnecting AirBag system or evacuating A/C, though it is very advisable, it was my risk):

Please forgive my layman naming of parts, I am not a mechanic but a programmer. :) What I have done might carry risk to you or to your car.

Take off upper engine holders. Remove upper battery cover. Disconnect the battery, if you want more clearance, take the battery out. Above the radiator there is a yellow sensor, I believe it is for the airbag system, do not touch it, bump it, or disconnect it. Then push the air filter assembly upwards, disconnect sensor wire attached.

I find that in Deville of my model it is hard to PROPERLY take the antifreeze out of the system. The plug that is on the bottom on the driver's side is impossible to reach from any position and drain the system. So, I found no other recourse but to drain it by removing the lower radiator hose that spilled the antifreeze everywhere, the pan did not catch it all. Remove upper hose, then bottom hose. Hoses might be fused to the metal parts and hard to remove even when clamps are off.

Disconnect very carefully transmission lines, very carefully. Try to fold them up and tie so oil would not run out. Be careful not to damage the thread on the connectors, they are made of soft metal.

Deville has 2 fans. Each fan is mounted with 2 bolts. Disconnect the power connector from each of the fan and take it out, it might require some spinning the whole fan around to get them out, I started with the one on the driver's side.

Below the fans there are three relays, they are in the way, you must remove a screw and move the relay holder away.

The radiator is held to the A/C condenser by one bolt on each side at the top. Each that bolt is connected to a bracket that holds the A/C condenser by two screws. Then there is a holder above the radiator itself, it holds the radiator on the top. 3 screws and it will come out. There is a small screw on the driver's side that holds A/C line. I was unable to unscrew it, there is simply no clearance. I used the chisel to break and shutter that plastic part to free up the radiator. The brackets that connect to the A/C are in the way of taking the radiator, unscrew 2 screws on each side of the A/C condenser and the brackets become loose. After all this a radiator is easy to take out.

Take care not to move much or damage in any way the A/C parts around the radiator, they are under pressure, especially if you just used A/C. Any rupture will send a hot steam your way, in any case it will not be pretty. So, be really, really careful there.

Once you take the radiator out, compare it with the one you have, compare the transmission line connections size, etc.

Put the new one in, first connect the brackets to the radiator, then to the A/C condenser. I think it is the easiest way.

Then work your way backwards.

Use a distilled water and antifreeze to fill and run with the cap off and heat on high.