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96 850 GLT Climate Control Problem

Help, Advice and DIY Tutorials on Volvo's extremely popular car line -- Volvo's 1990s "bread and butter" cars -- powered by the ubiquitous and durable Volvo inline 5-cylinder engine.

1992 - 1997 850, 850 R, 850 T5-R, 850 T5, 850 GLT
1997 - 2000 S70, S70 AWD
1997 - 2000 V70, V70 AWD
1997 - 2000 V70-XC
1997 - 2004 C70

osmium
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Year and Model: 96 850 GLT
Location: Nashua, NH
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osmium

96 850 GLT Climate Control Problem

Post by osmium » Tue Apr 11, 2017 3:22 pm

Every time I start the car now, I'm getting the flashing lights on the climate control unit. I know that means it's objecting to something.
I'm thinking it's complaining about stuck/inoperative flaps. When I set the dial to direct air to come out of the dashboard, I don't get any flow.

In the past, I repaired the flap motor that's by the glove box. That was easy to get to. How much of the dash would I have to disassemble to get at the other flaps? If I don't repair it and let it keep blinking, can I ruin the control module?

-Os


1996 850 GLT 262k miles (gone :( )

Image

1999 Honda Civic
1996 850 GLT (gone, no more Volvos :( )
2000 Buick Park Avenue
2005 Honda Odyssey
2013 Lexus ES350 (replaced Volvo 850)

scot850
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Year and Model: 2000 V70 R
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scot850

Re: 96 850 GLT Climate Control Problem

Post by scot850 » Tue Apr 11, 2017 4:30 pm

You can see all the servo motors for an 850 by dropping the lower knee pads and pulling the knee braces.

The main one that doesn't necessarily fail, but stops working is the one for the main dash flap. It is on the RH side of the center tunnel just behind and to the side of the radio. What happens with this one is one of 2 things:

1) There are 2 flaps on either end of the main shaft the motor drives. First thing that fails is the drive point on the end of the shaft that is a plastic shaft with a square hole in it that the motor drive fits in. It cracks with age and then the motor turns but the shaft does not. The simple fix is a very small worm drive clamp over the plastic shaft to help it hold it's shape, and I have seen some use a tightly pulled zip-tie.

2) Often the reason for 1) is the 2 flaps on the shaft have thin rubber seals around the flaps and they can 'melt' with age so they become sticky and make the motor have to drive harder. I'm not sure if the RH one is still available that has the drive shaft that breaks as part of it. The LH one is no longer available unless you buy the whole assembly and that was 5 years ago! I was lucky to get one from a Volvo specialist as they had a car with the dashboard removed, otherwise they wouldn't do it as it is too much work. To replace that one requires removing the whole dash and the heater ducting to access it. If this is broken I'd try the easy fix first on the drive shaft, and if needed replace that flap if still available.

There is another motor behind that one which is hidden an a bear to get to and require a lot of swearing and contortions to get to with a variety of long screw drivers with torx or crosshead screws. There is another motor on the LHS of the center console area up to the right of the steering column. Actually trying to remember if there are 2 on the 850's?

Good luck!

Neil.


2000 V70 R - still being an endless PITA
2006 XC70
2003 Toyota 4Runner V8 Limited
2015 Kia Sportage EX-L
1993 850 GLT -Sold
1998 V70 XC - Sold
1997 Volvo 850 SE NA - Went to niece in California - Sold
2000 V70 SE NA - New project and test bed - Sold

tryingbe
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Re: 96 850 GLT Climate Control Problem

Post by tryingbe » Tue Apr 11, 2017 6:51 pm

So blower works fine, just won't direct the air correctly?


85 GLH, 367 whp
00 Insight, 72 mpg

osmium
Posts: 208
Joined: Thu Jul 02, 2009 5:29 pm
Year and Model: 96 850 GLT
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osmium

Re: 96 850 GLT Climate Control Problem

Post by osmium » Tue Apr 11, 2017 7:23 pm

tryingbe wrote:
Tue Apr 11, 2017 6:51 pm
So blower works fine, just won't direct the air correctly?

Yes, the blower runs fine.

Air doesn't come out of the dash. Goes to the windshield OK


1996 850 GLT 262k miles (gone :( )

Image

1999 Honda Civic
1996 850 GLT (gone, no more Volvos :( )
2000 Buick Park Avenue
2005 Honda Odyssey
2013 Lexus ES350 (replaced Volvo 850)

osmium
Posts: 208
Joined: Thu Jul 02, 2009 5:29 pm
Year and Model: 96 850 GLT
Location: Nashua, NH
Has thanked: 0
Been thanked: 0
United States of America
osmium

Re: 96 850 GLT Climate Control Problem

Post by osmium » Tue Apr 11, 2017 7:26 pm

Thanks for the info.

I used a worm gear clamp to fix the motor by the glove box a couple years back. No problem since.

-Os


1996 850 GLT 262k miles (gone :( )

Image

1999 Honda Civic
1996 850 GLT (gone, no more Volvos :( )
2000 Buick Park Avenue
2005 Honda Odyssey
2013 Lexus ES350 (replaced Volvo 850)

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