FORD BLEND DOOR FIX (EXPLORER, RANGER, EXPEDITION)
If your climate control only has two settings: HEAT and MAX A/C then the chances are this fix will work for you.
The fix was originally developed by FTE member jfranks � YOU RULE!
I paraphrased the blend door fix from jfrank and added some digital pictures I took when I completed the fix on my 1996 Explorer. His original fix document is available here: jfrank's blend door fix
Remove the glove box to gain access to the plenum. There is a release on the left hand side of the glove box.
Locate the actuator. The actuator is a flat white box that sits on 4 clip posts on the top left of the plenum. It has a wiring harness coming out of the front.
Remove the actuator. Use a flat head screwdriver to pry up the actuator. Pry up the front first and then put the screwdriver under it to pop up the back. (Note: I unplugged the wiring harness when I removed mine. If you also unplugged the wiring harness you will need to plug it back in before doing step 4).
On the bottom of the actuator there is a �D� shaped pin. Turn on the ignition and move the heater control on the dash. You should see the pin rotate (wiring harness must be attached!). If the pin does not rotate then you have a different problem (bad actuator, terminals corroded, etc). If the actuator does move, set the heater control to full heat and turn the blower on high. THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT. It moves the actuator to the correct position for the fix.
Actuator "D" shaped pin.
Using a small dentist mirror and flashlight, look into the top of the box where the actuator pin goes. You should see that the chamber is half missing. It should look similar to the drawing below:
They all break roughly in the same spot. If it looks like the drawing above then drill a hole (I used a 1/16 in drill bit) in the actuator pin in the location in the drawing below:
After drilling the hole insert a metal rod. I used a cut down finishing nail. Others have used a cut down drill bit. Be sure to have about 1/8 in on either side of the pin. Be sure it is snug in the hole.
Close up of fix. Drilled out with 1/16 in drill bit and cut down finishing nail.
Close up of fix - side view.
Snap the actuator back on the box. If the pin won�t go in fully then the rod may be in the wrong place. Remove the rod and re-drill the hole. Reinsert the rod in the new hole and try it again. You may need repeat this step several times until the actuator fits.
Once the actuator fits back in the box, try the heat controls. Go from heat to cool. If the temperature changes, Congratulations! You just saved yourself $1000!
(Optional) Take the actuator back out and put a spot of glue on the rod to keep it firmly in place.
there are pictures at http://www.blenddoorfix.netfirms.com/
The root cause of blend door problems on the Explorer is the motor overdriving the plastic blend door and eventually breaking the door. Once this happens, you lose control over temperature control of the HVAC system. Replacing the plastic door with another plastic door is a temporary fix...the door will break again over time. The HeaterTreater solution replaces the plastic components with steel that will outlast the Explorer, and is installed with a greatly simplified process of accessing the door by making a Dremel cut in the bottom of the heater box(no disassembly of the dash panel whatsoever). The fix is very easy and 100% effective. Check for more information at www.heatertreater.net, or by clicking on the Google ad on this forum.
If the defroster is blowing hot air and it is still leaving moisture on the inside of the windshield, the heater core may be leaking coolant causing that condition. If the defroster is blowing cold air it could be the cooling system is low on coolant, or the thermostat is stuck open or the heater core is plugged up or the temp blend door has a malfunction.
The blend door sits vertically in the heater box behind the glove box. If you fully open the glove box, you can see the actuator motor on top of the heater box in the upper left hand corner. On the bottom of the box is a "pedestal" that is the bottom axle point for the blend door. The door axis is between the motor axle and the pedestal. If you are having issues with a Ford Ranger blend door, you can find diagnostic procedures with pictures and a cheap easy solution to the problem at HeaterTreater www.heatertreater.net, or follow the Google ads on this site. cgallen
1. Place the heater-A/C unit on a suitable work surface. 2. Locate and remove one retaining nut from the blend-air door pivot shaft. 3. To remove the top cover from the heater-A/C case, the crank arm must be removed. 4. Disconnect the vacuum lines from the defroster and panel mode vacuum actuators and position them out of the way. 5. Remove the 3 heater-A/C unit cover attaching screws, fastened upward at the defroster outlet chamber. 6. Remove the 2 heater-A/C unit cover attaching screws, fastened upward at the air inlet plenum. 7. Remove the 11 heater-A/C unit cover attaching screws, fastened downward into the housing. Then lift the cover from the heater-A/C unit. 8. Remove the old heater core from the case. To install: 9. Install the new heater core into the heater-A/C unit case in the same position as the the old one. 10. Place the cover onto the case and secure in place with the 11 retaining screws. 11. Install the 2 heater-A/C unit cover attaching screws in the air inlet plenum. 12. Install the 3 heater-A/C unit cover attaching screws in the defroster outlet chamber. 13. Attach the vacuum lines from the defroster and panel mode vacuum actuators to the heater-A/C unit case. 14. Install the crank arm and the retaining nut on the blend-air door pivot shaft. 15. Install the heater-A/C unit assembly into the vehicle.
No the blend door not functioning will not cause fog; it may however prevent the windows from being defogged or defrosted. If the widows only fog up when the defroster is on, then you either have a coolant leak in the heater core or your air conditioner compressor isn't working (the AC is used to dry the air when the heat is on).
If all you have coming out is cold air it is probably the blend door control. The blend door sits directly behind the heater controls. It is a square white plastic box (3in x5in and half inch thick) It attaches to the slide control from cold to hot with a small screw type gear (plastic) and strips out VERY easily.See "Related Questions" below for more
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