What to Look for in a New A/C Blower Switch
The a/c blower switch needs to create mechanical connections to open and close several circuits that are necessary in regulating the speed of the blower fan. Over time, these contacts can erode and get coated with carbon, causing one or some of your ride’s blower fans to stop working.
If the a/c still kicks in and after grounding the orange/black wire at the heater control panel connector, the blower motor runs, there’s a high probability that you’ve got a bad blower switch.
Unless it’s okay for you to feel like being roasted inside your car, you need to replace your ride’s defective a/c blower switch before your next trip. When looking for a replacement, here are the factors you should consider:
It’s wise to choose a switch that’s of the same part number as your stock component. This way, you can ensure perfect fit and easy installation as the part will surely bolt onto place exactly like the original switch. While most choices out there are advertised as direct-fit components, they may not ensure perfect fit in your a/c if they are of different part number.
Compatibility with the a/c system
For the new switch to work well, it should be compatible with the rest of the a/c components it needs to work hand in hand with. So, it pays to know first the specifications of the stock before getting a replacement. Find out the stock’s number of terminals, terminal type (pin, blade, or pin-and-blade terminal type), mounting type (snap on or screw-in), and other specifications.
If you’re installing an auxiliary a/c blower switch, part compatibility can be assured by getting a switch assembly instead of buying individual components and assembling them before installation.
The price of a/c blower switches range from $30 to a little over $220. Switch assemblies generally cost higher than units that are sold individually.
Good warranty coverage
Product warranty should also be considered when purchasing an a/c blower switch as it is a sign that the manufacturer or the merchant has confidence that its products will last long. You see, some factory defects are not apparent until you’re using the component. If it gives up within the period specified in the warranty coverage, it will be fixed or replaced (whichever is stated in the warranty) by the manufacturer or the merchant for free.
A/C blower switches may come with an industry standard 90-day warranty to 3-year or 36,000-mile manufacturer limited warranty.
How to Remove the Old and Install the New A/C Blower Switch
A defective a/c blower switch, also known as the heater fan switch, can render the blower fan useless. As you turn the control knob, this switch opens and closes two contacts to control the operation of the fan. But, age and constant use can make these contacts wear out, causing the switch to malfunction and eventually stop working. When this happens and you’re thinking of replacing the switch all by yourself, here are the basic removal and installation steps to help you out:
Difficulty level: Easy
What you’ll need:
- Phillips screwdriver
- Flat-head screwdriver
- New a/c blower switch
Removing the old switch
Step 1: Detach the ground cable from the battery’s negative terminal and secure it so it won’t accidentally touch the terminal and cause electric shocks while you’re working with the switch.
Step 2: With a flathead screwdriver, remove the heater control trim panel. Pry the trim panel carefully so as not to damage it.
Step 3: Using a Phillips screwdriver, loosen and pull out the screws that hold the heater control assembly to the vehicle’s dash. Once the screws are out, carefully pull the assembly away from the dash.
Step 4: Remove the control knob of the a/c blower switch and, with your hands, carefully disengage the electrical connector from the back portion of the switch. Press the retaining tab with your one hand while pulling the assembly with the other hand.
Step 5: Loosen and remove the screws connecting the heater/blower fan switch to the heater control assembly, and then detach the switch from the assembly.
Installing the replacement switch
Step 6: Slide in the replacement switch into its slot in the heater/blower control assembly. Put back the screws and tighten them to secure the a/c blower switch in place.
Step 7: Reconnect the electrical connector to the back of the switch and, with your hand, depress the control knob onto the switch.
Step 8: Carefully reinstall the heater control assembly into the dash. Hold it in place by putting back and tightening the screws.
Step 9: Put the heater control trim panel back in place and press it into the dash.
The exact steps may vary by the year and model of your ride. But if you are to perform these basic and fairly straightforward steps, these can be pulled off even by a novice DIYer in about half an hour.