Cheap Solution for Ford Blend Door Failure

With the advent of automotive HVAC automated temperature control, auto manufacturers have adopted an "always hot" heater core. This allows instantaneous addition of heated air to the HVAC system to maintain a constant interior temperature. Unfortunately, if the door actuator fails, it is buried in the dash board. Failure of the door controller (which is about $90.00 ) requires the removal of the dash board (R&R = 10 hours or $800). Fortunately, older technology is available to correct this for a fraction of the cost.

For eighty years, the way heater temperatures were maintained was by throttling the amount of hot coolant from the engine. This method is still applicable today. By cutting the heater core engine heat source hose and inserting a fairly standard heater core throttle, one can control heat entering the HVAC system the "old way". The valve is available at most auto parts stores (see image). For about $30.00 , one now has a working HVAC system!

Step 1:



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    3 Discussions


    2 years ago

    Great fix. But I think that you need to update your labor rate, 10 hours where I work would be around 1,300.

    1 reply

    Reply 2 years ago

    I'm sorry... The last time I could afford to go to a dealership was when I bought a new G8 GT in 2008. I only could afford to go there under warranty . At 24 K miles the lower control arms were worn out hence not covered. The dealership then quoted 10 hours at $80/Hr Plus $590 for the arms. Instead I bought some beautiful aluminum racing arms with replaceable ball joints for $236 and had a local shop run by a local drag/circle track racer replace and align (with a 40yr old mirror rack) for $200. So, maybe I'm "out of touch"? More probably I'm just cheap. Thanks for the kind comments.


    2 years ago

    Nice and simple! This looks like a great fix.