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-   -   Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"? (https://www.sportsmobileforum.com/forums/f33/heater-valve-bypass-to-fix-heated-dashboard-vents-13588.html)

Viva 09-25-2014 01:32 PM

Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Hi folks,

I have a '98 E-350 with V-10 and along with plenty of doghouse heat (need to work on that) I have "heated vents." In other words, the air coming out the dash vents (even if it is 60 outside) is stiflingly warm, even with the temperature wheel all the way in the blue. I can counteract this by running the A/C, but there are many times I would prefer just to have outside air coming in the vents (but not heated :a7:)

I previously had a '97 E-250 with the 5.4 V-8 and did not have this problem (nor the hot doghouse). Maybe the two additional cylinders are right at the back and that contributes to the problem?

Anyway, in a PM with another forum member he mentioned a heater valve bypass that apparently helps with this problem. That would be fantastic! I searched various terms here (heater, bypass, valve, vent) but found mostly threads on furnace type heaters or water heater bypasses. I did find one mention of the vent issue, but it was a passing mention in the "What did you do today..." thread.

So, can anyone point me to an existing thread and/or discuss this issue here? I sure would like to get out of the "sauna" and back to comfortable driving (btw, the engine is not running particularly hot - usually around 193 to 198 with occasional blips to 202 (then fan comes on, but the heat problem exists even when this is not happening).

Thanks,
Viva

86Scotty 09-25-2014 01:44 PM

Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
It could also be a blend door issue. I know there are some threads on this on the FTE van forums. I'll track if down for you when I can get to a real computer.

Viva 09-25-2014 01:56 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by 86Scotty
It could also be a blend door issue. I know there are some threads on this on the FTE van forums. I'll track if down for you when I can get to a real computer.

Aha, well maybe I should just have posted the issue and asked what the problem might be! I would very much appreciate any leads, whether or not it is specifically a bypass or something else.

The problem is (even) more noticeable when I have stopped for a short while (engine at full temp) and then get going again. It's always bad, but just worse then, I guess when the hot engine and vents have been "sitting together." I miss my fresh/cool vents!

Thanks to anyone for any tips,
Viva

carringb 09-25-2014 03:03 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Found some info: https://www.thedieselstop.com/forums/...-valve-157834/

sierraskier 09-25-2014 03:28 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
I have the exact same year, engine, and problem....only no working AC. Interested in how this unfolds...

Quote:

Originally Posted by Viva
Hi folks,

I have a '98 E-350 with V-10 and along with plenty of doghouse heat (need to work on that) I have "heated vents." In other words, the air coming out the dash vents (even if it is 60 outside) is stiflingly warm, even with the temperature wheel all the way in the blue. I can counteract this by running the A/C, but there are many times I would prefer just to have outside air coming in the vents (but not heated :a7:)

I previously had a '97 E-250 with the 5.4 V-8 and did not have this problem (nor the hot doghouse). Maybe the two additional cylinders are right at the back and that contributes to the problem?

Anyway, in a PM with another forum member he mentioned a heater valve bypass that apparently helps with this problem. That would be fantastic! I searched various terms here (heater, bypass, valve, vent) but found mostly threads on furnace type heaters or water heater bypasses. I did find one mention of the vent issue, but it was a passing mention in the "What did you do today..." thread.

So, can anyone point me to an existing thread and/or discuss this issue here? I sure would like to get out of the "sauna" and back to comfortable driving (btw, the engine is not running particularly hot - usually around 193 to 198 with occasional blips to 202 (then fan comes on, but the heat problem exists even when this is not happening).

Thanks,
Viva


Viva 09-25-2014 05:34 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Good to know this may be of use to you, too. I do miss the "good old days" of tooling along in 65 weather with my vents open and no AC (in my E-250 SMB with 5.4).

I found the product that Carringb's linked thread discusses on Dieselsite a couple hours ago (also mentioned in another thread I unearthed from a tip earlier in this one). It is called the "Max Assist." This helps the AC, but only on Max setting (recirculate). It apparently has to do with how the vacuum lines are set up in the Ford. However, they make another product, "The Cold Rush," which apparently helps the problem on all settings (including vent). However it requires that the Max Assist be installed as well/first, from what I can tell.

https://www.dieselsite.com/maxacassistac ... 0373l.aspx

https://www.dieselsite.com/coldrush.aspx

I wrote to Dieselsite to ask about fitment for an E-350 with V-10, since from what I could see they were mentioning trucks. Haven't heard back yet but when I do I will post here.

And now to go see what the thread Carringb linked to says about putting these on vans...

Viva 09-25-2014 05:46 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
I also found this thread, which shows the installation of a Max Assist in an SMB (but not sure which engine - sounds like maybe 6.0 diesel - maybe others here can tell just by looking). I have to admit that the installation looks a bit intimidating to me, but at least it shows that it can be done. The Cold Rush sounds easier (but you need Max Assist to put in Cold Rush in most cases, it sounds like).

https://www.sportsmobileforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=4635

mikracer 09-25-2014 06:04 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
I recently read up on this when the heater core on my 95 SMB went out on me. I was curious as to why the vent air was always warmer than the ambient air outside and read that it had something to do with hot water always running through the heater core and not only on the heat setting. Basically, because the heater core is always hot, any air that passes through it will be heated. The bypass valve is supposed to bypass the water running into the heater core so that the core isnt hot. I read some reviews saying it worked great and then some that said they hardley noticed a difference.

I considered this mod for my 05 with the V10 because the vent air is noticeably warmer than ambient air. I figure my local shop would charge me about an hour for labor since the instructions say something about being able to install it in like 20 minutes. Never got around to it yet, but this has re-sparked my interest in it.

Viva 09-25-2014 07:27 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
While I'm not glad to hear that others are also suffering with "heated vents," it is nice that more people are interested and contributing to the thread. Won't it be great if we can get our vents to simply bring cool/ambient air into the cab? I prefer that to AC when possible regardless, but plus it seems silly to have to run the AC (and get even worse gas mileage) in cool weather. Plus when I'm towing I tend to turn off the AC on long pulls and then end up roasting. The road noise of open windows also gets old on a long trip.

Anyway, maybe now that there are a few of us interested, we can use the momentum (and the great resources here) to figure out a good fix :b5:

PS: Oddly, I never noticed this in my '97 with 5.4, and that engine actually ran hotter than my current V-10 (206 consistently vs. 198 for the V-10, although the V-10 fluctuates a bit more than the 5.4 did). Maybe the additional two cylinders somehow position things to heat up more? A "last straw" thing in addition to the heater core situation?

Anyway, I will be thrilled if I can get this fixed!

daveb 09-25-2014 07:58 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Viva
I also found this thread, which shows the installation of a Max Assist in an SMB (but not sure which engine - sounds like maybe 6.0 diesel - maybe others here can tell just by looking). I have to admit that the installation looks a bit intimidating to me, but at least it shows that it can be done. The Cold Rush sounds easier (but you need Max Assist to put in Cold Rush in most cases, it sounds like).

https://www.sportsmobileforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=4635

IIRC Herb had or was going to do it before he sold his van. I'm like you... very intimidating and have planned to do it one of these days but I'll let somebody who actually knows what the hell they're doing. Besides, I'm lazy and have the money. Well after I pay off the bullet proof job :b7:
Sucks when dust is coming in the back doors and it's cool enough to not use the vent mode but get hot air forcing me to use the AC and freeze myself out. :d7:

BroncoHauler 09-25-2014 08:57 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Yep, even took it to SMBw to ask them to install it. They talked to somebody at the local Ford dealer, and they said 'don't bother, Ford already installs them'. Fro what I've been able to find, that is not true. There is a factory valve, but it does not shut off completely, so there is always some hot coolant flow through the heater core.

I still have it, since I couldn't lay my hands on it when I sold my SMB (I never mentioned itor advertised it as being included). I'm almost positive I know where it is, and I'm fairly sure I can dig up the instructions.


Herb

86Scotty 09-25-2014 09:38 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
This may or may not help any. It's a fairly lengthy thread. I read it awhile back and looks by the title like it's not your problem. However, if I remember right there is a lot of good info about how the system works. Hope it helps, I did NOT just reread it all but will soon.

https://www.ford-trucks.com/forums/10...efrosters.html

Also, this:

https://www.ford-trucks.com/forums/13...oor-issue.html

:b5:

oldbonesclimber 09-25-2014 10:28 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
I installed the Cold Air Rush with MAX Assist. Can't be happier. The A/C air with my Starcool is almost Too Cold traveling in 100 temps. Installation is a pain at the heater hose and needed some creative hose work. I would definately do it again.

Paul :u1: :u1:

carringb 09-25-2014 10:38 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
My vents are also warmer than ambient. Barely when empty, but after a hard pull in the mountains, quite a bit hotter. I never did the upgrade because I usually drive with the A/C on, either because its warm or because its raining and DEF is needed anyways, or anytime most of the seats full I have to run the rear A/C to keep it from getting stuffy.

There have been a few time this summer though I wish I had it. Mostly, after a hard pull then stopping for a light or traffic. At that point, my coolant is a good 30F hotter than normal, and so is the dash air! And, there's been a few hard long pulls this summer I turned off the A/C when my trans temps topped 200F and the summit wasn't in sight yet. Then again, I'm still diff temp limited so I probably could just leave the A/C on and slow down a little.

So... I guess this mod will stay on my ever growing to-do list :b1:

Viva 09-25-2014 11:53 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by oldbonesclimber
I installed the Cold Air Rush with MAX Assist. Can't be happier. The A/C air with my Starcool is almost Too Cold traveling in 100 temps. Installation is a pain at the heater hose and needed some creative hose work. I would definately do it again.

Any tips for those of us who haven't done it and are not machine shop owners or fabricators? Where is it on the scale of "it's not too bad" to "if you have to ask..."?

It's great to hear you are happy with it.

Viva

JWA 09-26-2014 05:40 AM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Let me attempt to consolidate some info about the Ford HVAC systems.....

The following assumes the air circulating system is in good working order and functioning as designed.

Via the blend door hot coolant is now constantly present and circulating through the heater core regardless what setting is selected on the function control, aka Heat, Vent, Mix, Defrost, A/C or Max A/C. As such we feel vented air above ambient because the plenum is always heated. No way around this sad to say.

Adding some sort of coolant shut off valve in the coolant line off the intake manifold solves this problem IF we don't need the defrost function. It should be noted the Mix & Defrost settings not only direct air flow to the windshield and side window vents it engages the A/C compressor in order to dehumidify the air flow hitting the interior glass surfaces.

Stopping warm coolant flow through the heater core does reduce vented air temps but it also affects the Defrost function. Carefully consider this for any modifications begun or contemplated, think if this would be an inconvenience or safety issue.

That being said I'm somewhat in process of "field engineering" an electro-mechanical system that would give me control of a vacuum actuated valve via dash mounted switch. This would give me total control of coolant flow through the front heater core, I could turn it on or off at will, completely independently of the factory function controls. I have a general idea how to best accomplish this but the real test will be sorting out the actual details and making it work as I envision, the mechanics of it all so to speak.

I've already successfully developed a system for an after market rear heater which differs greatly from Ford's design for their own rear heat & A/C units. Ford has the rear heat Tee'd into the front heater core whereas my design allows for front heat only OR hot coolant flow directed first to the rear coil which in turn feeds the front coil. Because coolant flow can be directed according to need (front only or front & rear combined) its highly efficient for people and materials needing heat during the colder months front and/or rear areas.

This isn't all that complicated to me but I'm somewhat of a tinkerer, have plenty of necessary tools and not too shabby with wild concepts being put into action. The Max Air system consists of the same sort of components I've used and incorporated so for me it would a no brainer so to speak. For those who've not dug into routing and re-routing heater lines along with vacuum or electrical controlled valves this might be a bit daunting, at least initially.

The best part is all this is its mostly relatively cheap heater hose and clamps along with readily accessible automotive type coolant flow fittings. For the most part almost anything done can be easily reversed, in that way you'd end up no worse or better off than the existing conditions of higher-than-ambient air flow out of the vents.

Ask any questions and I'll do my best to answer them as clearly as I can.

Viva 09-26-2014 10:05 AM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Thanks for that explanation. I wondered about the AC/Defrost connection. I have to say I prefer a system that is more independent such as my typical cars have been. That is, a temperature function, a button that lets me turn the AC on or off (but does not tell it where to exude from), and a selector from which I can tell the air (hot or cold) where to come out from. I mean seriously, I'm not so stupid that I couldn't put AC on the windshield if I needed it to help defrost. OTOH, I don't necessarily want the AC compressor on when I'm towing up a hill, and I might like the AC to come out a specific position....

Okay, got that over with. Anyway... I think I might have two issues, but perhaps you (or someone) could give me your thoughts. Since I'm traveling, I don't have a good/known mechanic, so I usually try to either do my own repairs, or at least know exactly what I want done (if possible) if I'm taking it to someone I don't know (OTOH, if I had a good/known mechanic, it's not that I need or want to do this work myself!).

Anyway, so after reading the links that 86 Scotty provided to FTE (thanks!), I think I have both of the following:

1) The vent/heater core/design problem, and...

2) Perhaps a vacuum problem. I think the vacuum problem is a minor one, not a complete failure.

Symptoms of #1 are heated air coming out the vents even in cool weather (especially after stopping, but all the time to some degree), and a general area of hot air coming out from under the dash above where the Scan Gauge plugs in. Also although the AC always works, it seems less than icy in hot weather.

Symptoms of what I think is #2:

a) One time when I was towing and had the AC on (or actually it might have been the vents since I don't typically go uphill towing with AC on - - this might have been before I gave up on the vents), I was accelerating up a hill and everything automatically switched over to "defrost" position, then "mysteriously" switched back. This happened a couple of times last May, but then never again. I did wonder how it had "healed itself." Now I think I know: I have quit using the vents as they are so uncomfortably hot, and I typically now just switch the HVAC to "Off" when climbing a hill while towing.

b) I have had an EGR code (0455) set from time to time but with growing frequency. I had part of the EGR system replaced (for some annoying reason they didn't do it all but didn't tell me until I was on my way out the door and sure enough, about 50 miles later.... 0455). However now I think it might be (at least partly) due to a vacuum loss under acceleration. Because I thought I had noticed that it would often set if I was climbing a hill but midway up let off the gas slightly. Then "bing" I'd get the CEL and Scan Gauge would show it to be 0455 (I'm also getting occasional 0401, but I think that is separate?). The 0455 has been getting more frequent (but I did just finish a 2,000+ mile mountainous tow, so lots of accelerating up hills).

From what I read in the links, there is a hard-to-access vacuum canister and an impossible to find check valve. If Ford fixes these it's thousands of dollars plus (almost worse, to me) they take your whole dash, etc. apart. I find that often leads to annoying scratches, loose parts, etc. Anyway, when you are accelerating hard that pulls a lot of vacuum and so if there is a leak or problem, there is not enough left over to "run" the HVAC selector system, and so it goes to its default position, which is Defrost. Apparently the EGR system also uses vacuum, hence my hunch in (b), above.

I figure it must only be a smallish leak, not a complete failure, because I only notice it when towing/accelerating uphill, and also when I turn the HVAC selector from Off to another position, I can hear the "hushhhhh" vacuum sound (plus a wee squeak). So that must mean there is at least enough vacuum to run it most of the time.

I think this is separate from the "heated vents" problem as that occurs all the time, just by virtue of the engine running (no need to be towing, going uphill, etc.). So I likely need to fix both. It seemed like the best fix for the vacuum system was to make your own, generously sized canister out of PVC and mount it above the passenger footwell, along with a check valve, bypassing the original system. Some folks cut a hole in the passenger fender liner above the wheel, and were able to re-attach a vacuum line to the original canister, but that doesn't do anything with the check valve, which no one can even find. There are vacuum canisters you can buy, but it sounded like they might not be large enough (?).

Okay, if anyone is still with me, a question just out of curiosity (and back to issue #1, the heated vents): If the HVAC knob is in the Off position, is there still circulation through the heater core? Not that it would be practical to drive like this, but I was just wondering.

It is a bit irritating having to re-engineer the working-as-designed HVAC system of a van that has been in production for decades :a7:

So in summary, does this sound reasonable for my rig:

1) Fabricate and install larger vacuum canister and new check valve above passenger footwell; abandon OEM canister/check valve. OR... if/since the leak seems to be small, is there something else easier I could check first?

2) Install Max Air, then install The Cold Rush which is really what I want, but you have to put in the Max Air first.

Thanks,
Viva
(massively intimidated by doing any of this!) (if anyone knows of anyone really good/trustworthy - preferably a one- or two-person shop in N or NW Arizona, please let me know).

carringb 09-26-2014 11:53 AM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Viva it sounds like you do have a vacuum leak. Because it's affecting your EGR it probably
Upstream of your hvac. A vacuum leak going to the fuel canister can be large enough to affect other systems.

Viva 09-26-2014 02:51 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by carringb
Viva it sounds like you do have a vacuum leak. Because it's affecting your EGR it probably
Upstream of your hvac. A vacuum leak going to the fuel canister can be large enough to affect other systems.

That does sound right. Pardon my complete ignorance on this, but does this mean the leak (presuming there is only one) is not in the impossible-to-get-to canister and check valve? Where would I look for the lines that are upstream of the HVAC? I'm not very familiar with the inner workings of the V-10 and stuff under the hood.

And am I right in presuming that this is likely the EGR/defrost-on-loaded-acceleration issue cause, but that the "heated vents" are separate and "by properly operating Ford design" and so they will require the Max Air and Cold Rush fixes from Diesel Site if I want to change their behavior?

Viva

PS: I just looked at the receipt from the place that worked on the EGR last spring. I was thinking that was related to the 0455 code (I have been getting both 0401 and 0455, but I thought the 0401 was an evap leak (?), but here is what their notes say on the work order:

Check computer for codes. Code P0401 EGR insuff. flow. Checked and replaced DFPE Sensor. Possible other cause of code but diagnose flowed to DFPE Switch.

This doesn't mean a whole lot to me as I'm unfamiliar with the system in general, but it did not fix the codes (or at least I still get them, both 0455 and 0401).

carringb 09-26-2014 02:58 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
I wouldn't say a faulty HVAC vacuum component would not affect the other systems. I just thing it's less likely that a vacuum leak under hood or under van. But... anything is possible. It certainly would warrant some additional diagnostics IMO.

But you are correct that a vacuum leak would not affect air vent temperature, only air vent selection.

I've had two major vacuum leaks. One was the rear blend door ruptured. This affect the front A/C eventually, but anything else. I also had a major leak from my fuel tank, because the tank pressure sensor was not installed properly by the body shop. Only found it when I had my fuel pump replaced preventatively. This caused some various codes, and also created some bad intermittent pinging when pulling the trailer up steep grades. Probably would not have found it if I weren't worried about fuel pump life (in fact, I thought the pinging was probably due to low fuel pressure.... and maybe it was but either way its fine now!)

JWA 09-27-2014 06:33 AM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Viva

Okay, if anyone is still with me, a question just out of curiosity (and back to issue #1, the heated vents): If the HVAC knob is in the Off position, is there still circulation through the heater core? Not that it would be practical to drive like this, but I was just wondering.

Short answer is yes, coolant still flows regardless where or how the dash mounted controls are set. For 99% of owners this isn't a problem mostly because as long as the system works to their satisfaction they simply don't care. Its not really a problem, assuming everything is working to design. Whether you/we/they/them/all y'all believe Ford's approach is good or bad it is what it is and we have to deal with it or just leave it alone. Not a problem either way but trying to change an existing design requires big money to hire it out or digging in at the DIY level.



Quote:

Originally Posted by Viva
So in summary, does this sound reasonable for my rig:

1) Fabricate and install larger vacuum canister and new check valve above passenger footwell; abandon OEM canister/check valve. OR... if/since the leak seems to be small, is there something else easier I could check first?

2) Install Max Air, then install The Cold Rush which is really what I want, but you have to put in the Max Air first.

Thanks,
Viva
(massively intimidated by doing any of this!) (if anyone knows of anyone really good/trustworthy - preferably a one- or two-person shop in N or NW Arizona, please let me know).

In general if any of the DIY part of this is above your comfort level by all means don't try it. That's not necessarily trying to discourage you but to dig into something without a decent working knowledge of the system in general plus a fair degree of practical hands on experience with auto repairs your learning curve will be steep. One pit fall is disassembling things to the point the van can't be driven without a way to at least return it to driving condition.

I'd not consider adding either by hiring out or DIY this Cold Air or Max Air because I can produce 38* leaving air temps out of my A/C vents in Max Air, freeway speeds in a strictly stock configured 2000 E250. Mind you that van has all new A/C components along with fresh evacuation and refrigerant charge which makes a world of difference. (This van is front A/C only.)

Your original issue would be best solved via a work around method to finding & replacing the factory HVAC system vacuum reservoir. CarringB is spot on concerning those components downstream of it mostly because 99% of similarly described issues have been attributed to this part failing. Occasionally the vacuum line feeding the reservoir develops a leak from age etc etc but the good news there is its very easy to find and repair.

On FTE there are a number of posts relating to actual fixes for a leaking reservoir, Scotty86's link is probably one of the better ones to read.

A word of advice would be first solve the existing condition in order to restore your van's original HVAC function before doing or adding anything else. Also assure your A/C system is properly charged and working properly---this is vital. Once all this has been accomplished more than likely you'll find Ford's stock system works as well as you might need.

Keep also in mind vehicle A/C systems attempt to function in extreme conditions for which there is no real magic fix. For those who know A/C systems will atest its almost a miracle the modern day A/C systems work as well as they do. :a3:

Viva 09-27-2014 09:54 AM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
JWA,

Thanks for all the detailed info. I would like to clarify something though, as it seems that I gave the idea that I wish the A/C were colder. I don't. What I wish is that I did not have to run the A/C on all the glorious days that are between 60 and 80 just to keep from roasting. It mars my pleasure in driving the vehicle enough that I am considering something different (and that is huge, as I have put a lot of time/effort/thought into this rig, and love it otherwise).

Quote:

Originally Posted by JWA
Short answer is yes, coolant still flows regardless where or how the dash mounted controls are set. For 99% of owners this isn't a problem mostly because as long as the system works to their satisfaction they simply don't care. Its not really a problem, assuming everything is working to design.

But for me it is a problem. I have no complaints about the coldness of the A/C (I have front A/C only). The A/C works fine. My problem is having to use it ALL the time to keep from roasting, even if it is 60 outside. I have mostly driven with open vents in all my vehicles (unless it is really, really hot), but that option has been taken away from me in this van, and I pretty much have to use the A/C any time is over around 60. (I don't like long trips with windows open as the wind/road noise get old.)

So the real issue I want to solve is the "heated vents" and the heat that exudes from over my knee area (above the OBDII port). I thought I understood now that these things were a by-product of a design wherein hot water is always circulating through the heater core, but in your last post I now get the impression that this isn't the case and you wouldn't recommend the products that claim to change this (?). It sounds like many other people are content to run the A/C most of the time, but I am not happy needing to do that on a cool day. I would like to either fix that or, if it cannot be fixed, I will probably go a different route for a vehicle (which would be sad, as I have put a lot of effort into getting this one the way I want it).

Quote:

Originally Posted by JWA
I'd not consider adding either by hiring out or DIY this Cold Air or Max Air because I can produce 38* leaving air temps out of my A/C vents in Max Air, freeway speeds in a strictly stock configured 2000 E250.

My A/C temperature is fine, as noted above. What I want to solve is the heated vents, so I don't even have to use the A/C unless it is actually hot outside.

Quote:

Originally Posted by JWA
Your original issue would be best solved via a work around method to finding & replacing the factory HVAC system vacuum reservoir. CarringB is spot on concerning those components downstream of it mostly because 99% of similarly described issues have been attributed to this part failing. Occasionally the vacuum line feeding the reservoir develops a leak from age etc etc but the good news there is its very easy to find and repair.

On FTE there are a number of posts relating to actual fixes for a leaking reservoir, Scotty86's link is probably one of the better ones to read.

Maybe I side-tracked the issue with the vacuum leak discussion? It's just that it came up in the links that were posted (which I read) and I made the vacuum/EGR connection. I probably should have started a new thread for that. I do think I have a vacuum leak, but probably only minor since it's only noticeable when pulling mountain passes or steep hills when towing), and from what I am reading, that is not causing the heated vents (right?).

Quote:

Originally Posted by JWA
A word of advice would be first solve the existing condition in order to restore your van's original HVAC function before doing or adding anything else. Also assure your A/C system is properly charged and working properly---this is vital. Once all this has been accomplished more than likely you'll find Ford's stock system works as well as you might need.

I think I pretty much do have normal HVAC function, from what I have been reading. One time I had it switch to "defrost" when I was towing up a steep hill, but the rest of the time it seems to work fine/normally, except for the heated vents. Are the heated vents caused by a vacuum leak, or is this a separate topic (I will start a separate thread if so).

Quote:

Originally Posted by JWA
Keep also in mind vehicle A/C systems attempt to function in extreme conditions for which there is no real magic fix. For those who know A/C systems will atest its almost a miracle the modern day A/C systems work as well as they do. :a3:

But my problem isn't in extreme conditions - actually the van is great if it is below 55 or over 80 because then I am using heat or A/C and it's like driving any other vehicle. Where it sucks is between 55 and 80 when I would normally be breezing along comfortably with vents open, but now have to run the A/C in order not to roast. THAT is what I want to fix! I want my 60-80 pleasantly vented days back! It's really marring my enjoyment of the vehicle and driving (which I love!).

So in summary, I don't need or want colder A/C. Rather, I would like to not HAVE to run the A/C in cool weather at all! I would just like to open my vents as I have on every other vehicle I have ever owned. I thought I understood that the "heated vents" were part of Ford's design with fluid running through the heater core all the time (and that this could be fixed with Cold Rush), but now I'm confused as your most recent post sounds like I shouldn't be having this problem, and that others with properly operating HVAC systems don't have it (?) But if that's so, why did they invent Cold Rush? Again, I don't care about the Max Air, my A/C is fine --- but you have to install that first in order to put in the Cold Rush).

Thanks,
Viva

daveb 09-27-2014 12:38 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
That is how mine seems to work. I don't know if it's a year thing but I had planned to put in the cold rush for the same reason.
The way I thought I understood it is when the system is on max the flow is shut off to the heater core and when set to any other cold mode the blend door is closed unless you adjust the heat. So on vent, even if the temp is turned to cold, the coolant flow just makes thing hotter even though the heat door is closed. Correct??? I thought the aftermarket fix was just a way to trick the system to thinking the system is set to max AC. No?

I want positive pressure on dusty roads and being I have to run the Starcool when the the Ford AC runs, it can get kinda cold when it's 65-75* out. If I roll down the windows all the dust flies in. The vent mode is just too hot while running in mild weather.

I had a vacuum leak that kept the system from switching between defrost and vent but it didn't affect the heat settings as far as I could tell.

Viva 09-27-2014 01:45 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by daveb
That is how mine seems to work. I don't know if it's a year thing but I had planned to put in the cold rush for the same reason.
The way I thought I understood it is when the system is on max the flow is shut off to the heater core and when set to any other cold mode the blend door is closed unless you adjust the heat. So on vent, even if the temp is turned to cold, the coolant flow just makes thing hotter even though the heat door is closed. Correct??? I thought the aftermarket fix was just a way to trick the system to thinking the system is set to max AC. No?

The vent mode is just too hot while running in mild weather.

Sounds like you get what I want, and have the same issue with the heated vents in nice weather (I also like to pressurize the rig on dusty roads). From what I understand, there are a few rigs (2003 or newer?) that do have the valve so they don't need the "Max Air" but can just go straight to the Cold Rush to "unheat" the vents. But apparently most (?) don't, so that is why you need to install the "Max Air' product first, and then the Cold Rush. It's not that you (we) are looking for colder air, but just that the "Max Air" is a valve, which needs to be in place for the Cold Rush to work.

Here is what I received back from the tech. department at DieselSite:

I know exactly what you mean about running in just vent - we're in Florida so it's about to be that perfect Florida winter weather soon with no humidity and the windows down. :)

1. The COLD RUSH will do exactly this. It allows you to use the function of the valve for any setting other than just MAX AC... for vent, ac, etc

2. Follow your heater lines up near your fire wall. If you have a valve, you won't be able to miss it - it'll be spliced right into your lines.

3. You are correct in that you would be using the 7.3L Max AC if you do not already have the valve on your vehicle.

A little worse news though is that we cannot remember just how difficult it is to install these products on the van. It's a tight squeeze for everything in there and there's definitely no change as far as how to install them but your locations may be a little different.

If you have further questions or want to talk about them a little bit more, don't hesitate to call us at the office or email back with more questions!

Thanks very much for the interest,
Dieselsite


Quote:

Originally Posted by daveb
I had a vacuum leak that kept the system from switching between defrost and vent but it didn't affect the heat settings as far as I could tell.

Okay, so that is a red herring in my case, it sounds like. That makes sense to me. Especially since it seems to be a "minor leak" on my rig, and yet the heated vents are 24/7.

Viva

daveb 09-27-2014 02:17 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
In cold weather the vent will come on warm and as the cold air flows through the ducts it will start to cool but it will usually be warmer from the outside temps. If I slow down the vent temp goes up slightly. Annoying.

Viva 09-27-2014 02:35 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Sounds like yours behaves *exactly* like mine does. Starting up after being parked (but engine is still warm) is even worse. There is also "generalized heat" that exudes from above my knees (over the OBDII port) - not sure if you have that too, but apparently heater core lines run there as well.

Maybe we should have an "Install MAX AC plus Cold Rush" install/get together. All those with "heated vents" who simply want to be able to use the vents comfortably between 60 and 80 are invited :a1: (plus any other forum members as well, of course!)

I can be anywhere in the SW or between there and the CA Bay Area this winter -- or maybe even PNW :b5:

carringb 09-27-2014 02:46 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Hmmm I don't get any heat from the knee area. At all. Even if I switch to floor heat, it really blows more onto my feat than my knees. I wonder if your doghouse it leaking air?

daveb 09-27-2014 03:02 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
I don't either. I mean the dog house gets warm to the touch after the engine is hot but no air flow coming from other sources around the knee area. There is a bit of heat on top of the dog house that rises up to the stereo and CD's get pretty warm at times in summer.

Viva 09-27-2014 04:16 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Hmm, my doghouse gets really hot (but then it has a "quilted" cover, so that may hold the heat in a bit - I can feel the hot doghouse when I slip my hand under the "quilt"). The one on my 5.4 got warm, but not quite as warm as this one. I was thinking maybe the V-10 sat back a bit further (the extra two cylinders have to go somewhere....right?).

I thought I had read that the "warm area" above the knees was also part of the heater core always having hot liquid in it design -- maybe not? This is not "active" heat, such as would blow in the foot heater mode or come in the "heated" vents; it's more just a generalized warm air area. Of course without normal vents I can't get rid of it unless I run the air :a7:

On the doghouse: I'm not sure if the heat shouldn't be there, or if the heat is always there but shouldn't come into the rig (this is separate from the vents, which are still my top priority). My engine does not run particularly hot (range of 193F to 202F, but the 202 is only in very hot weather/towing/uphill). Typically it's in the 190's. So it seems I shouldn't start with any more heat than anyone else.

For the heat leaking out the top of the doghouse (which I have had on both rigs), I cut a section of black pipe insulation and wedged it in there. Looks almost stock and keeps that "line" of heat from coming out the top edge (under the radio and near the back of my cupholders). I did that on my 5.4 too - worked well on both rigs.

I mostly want to fix the vents, but am open to doghouse fixes too, as I don't need "extra" heat coming in. One thing that is frustrating is that there are so many issues/causes. I almost feel I need to install the Cold Rush just to see what goes away and what is still there to deal with. And having ambient vents would help everything, even if there was more to do later.

Ultimately, if I can't get it so that I can have fun driving again (neither roasting nor using the A/C in lovely, cool weather) then I'll have to look at other options (Sprinter van maybe). But that would be extremely irritating/depressing as I have put a lot into this van to get most things just how I want them. I really don't want to start over. I just want my derned vents!

I figure it can't just be my rig or Dieselsite would not have made two products to fix the problem (I've also read about it on various RV forums with folks who have cutaways with the V-10, although no conclusive solutions except "run the A/C." I know all vehicles have their quirks, but geez, you'd think HVAC on a 20+ year old design would not need aftermarket fixes.

I know, I sound aggravated, but I just got done with a 2,000 mile drive that should have been lovely and comfortable (ambient temps were 60's and 70's most of the way), and I had to either roast or run the AC. Bleargh.

carringb 09-27-2014 04:44 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
The V10 does not sit further back. It actually hangs forward a little more. This way the transmission mounting and drivelines don't need to be different for the various engines (since at one point, all engines in the E350s had the same transmission, gas or diesel).

The heater core is on the passenger side, so it doesn't warm the driver side. And, I don't get warm air blowing at the passenger's knees either, but you can feel some radiant.

I have gotten hot air blowing once, only because the doghouse wasn't seated properly. I found that latching the sides before the bottom is the best way to get a good seal.

Viva 09-27-2014 05:34 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by carringb
The V10 does not sit further back. It actually hangs forward a little more. This way the transmission mounting and drivelines don't need to be different for the various engines (since at one point, all engines in the E350s had the same transmission, gas or diesel).

Well I have wondered about that - thanks for letting me know. It was the only reason I could think of for my 5.4 being fine and this V-10 being a roaster, but it must be something(s) else.

Quote:

Originally Posted by carringb
I have gotten hot air blowing once, only because the doghouse wasn't seated properly. I found that latching the sides before the bottom is the best way to get a good seal.

I take it you mean just in general, not through the vents. I will check the seat of the doghouse and try your technique. At least if I can get the problem down to "just" the vents, I'll have fewer things to solve.

carringb 09-27-2014 05:49 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Yeah, I meant hot air blowing on my legs, not from the floor heat.

JWA 09-28-2014 05:43 AM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Hey again Viva---seems we both sidetracked ourselves on your hot vent issue---my apologies for being too slow on the uptake. :a3:

To suit your desires the Cold Rush and Max Air system thing might do the trick just fine. IMHO those kits are a bit of over-kill and basically redundant, that one needs to add both in order to achieve the single goal of significantly reducing air temps when in "vent" seems unnecessary. Their configuration ends up costing at least $100 more than this same thing could be done with DIY parts, all of top quality and same function

I'm about to install something similar in that I'll have full control over the coolant flow to the heater core, able to shut it off completely independently of Ford's standard control scheme. My homemade system will consist of one vacuum-actuated valve, an electric vacuum on/off control and dash-mounted switch, all incorporated into the existing system with only those parts, nothing else required (miscellaneous wiring, tubing, hose and clamps notwithstanding. :a3:)

One link include here earlier on lead me to a search results page, hoping this takes you to the same page: https://www.thedieselstop.com/forums/...031j7148753j19. There are several helpful and informative threads there, might give you more insight into your potential cure Viva.

At any rate your situation can be remedied by stopping the hot coolant flow to the heater core---easy enough in theory. How you achieve it, weather DIY or hiring it out or enlisting the help of a trusted friend will dictate the end cost and how soon its put into action.

Viva 09-28-2014 09:53 AM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Thanks, JWA! I can tell you are knowledgeable about the system, so it threw me for a bit of a loop when I thought you were saying you would not recommend the products or the problem shouldn't be bothersome.

I do hear you on "it's too bad to have to buy two products when you really only want the function of the one," and your system sounds very elegant (want to make two? :a1: ), but I'd be happy just to get the commercial ones on, even for a price (yours does sound better though). In fact, I don't think I'll be trying it alone since I don't want to get stranded. I'll probably try to either find a good shop who is willing to thoughtfully tackle it, or at least see if I can get together with someone else who wants to do the same fix and we could do one at a time (moral support plus at least one functioning vehicle!)

Viva

JWA 09-29-2014 05:15 AM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Viva if I can help in anyway with the home made version of this please let me know---be glad to add what I know. PM me and we'll take it from there.

Viva 09-29-2014 01:28 PM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Thanks, JWA :b5:

JWA 09-30-2014 08:03 AM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Thanks in part to Viva's questions & needs I've reopened my search for an easy, cheap and effective way to
accomplish a heater core shut off valve arrangement. Using just three parts; switch, relay and 12 VDC solenoid
valve it would almost completely shut the front heat core off and reduce its effect on Vent air flow, making it cooler
than if the valve wasn't installed.

It's a simple approach and oddly enough just a step back to the 50's through the early 90's when a
"heater control valve" was part of most vehicle heating systems. It could be cable, vacuum or electrically driven but
the idea is to stop or control the amount of hot coolant to the heater core.

The only decisions necessary is a) what actuates the valve? b) where to mount the cab control for said valve?. Variations
come into play if electrically actuated since the required switch for manual control or selection would/could come in
any number of vastly different appearance choices. With a relay even a small unobtrusive switch would be fine but the switch's
current handling ability would dictate this choice.

So that's my input so far...................

Viva 09-30-2014 09:49 AM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
My brain is straining to remember why (or if) there was a reason that a "simple' bypass wasn't supposed to work, but I can't remember. So maybe there wasn't any reason :b7: Or was there something about transmission cooling flow or...? Or why it is that one can't just install, say, "The Cold Rush" without doing the other part also?

JWA, I bet you have already accounted for whatever it is I'm vaguely remembering, or else I'm remembering something that doesn't exist (?). I just thought I had read some reason why there wasn't a simple fix (maybe in one of the numerous linked threads). It had to do with the overall design from Ford (natch). Of course if there is, I'll be very happy :b5:

Scalf77 09-30-2014 11:32 AM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
The Cold Rush is just an electric vacuum on/off control and dash-mounted switch, hook it to a always on Vacuum source and you now have control with a switch. The Mac AC Assist is the vacuum controlled heater core shutoff valve, you can use the Max AC assist by itself, to turn off the flow to the heater core by hooking to Port 1 (White, Recirculating air duct door) , this has vacuum when the switch is in the MAX A/C and Off positions. Adding the Cold Rush lets you instead control it with a switch.

Looking at diagrams for the Van Function Selector Switch (2004, V10) is appears to me that I could hook the MAX AC to Port 4 (Blue, Floor Panel) This has Vacuum in the Max AC, Norm AC, and Vent positions. The heater core would still be active when the switch was Off, Floor, Mix and Defrost .

I believe trucks use Port 6 and not Port 4, this has vacuum when in the extra switch setting Floor/Panel, that the van does not have. It would be very probable that you would want the heater core working in this position so that does not give you an option other then Max A/C position, or by adding the vacuum control switch "Cold Rush"

-greg

Viva 09-30-2014 11:59 AM

Re: Heater valve bypass to fix "heated dashboard vents"?
 
Sorry to sound dense, but could you possibly explain that another way? I'm trying to grasp it.

The Dieselsite products were designed for the trucks (vs. vans) it seems; so are you saying that their "requirement" to first fit the Max AC, and then The Cold Rush (i.e. The Cold Rush does what I want, but they say it is not a stand-alone product) is more a truck thing but we can do it differently in our vans?

I'm actually not stupid, normally (although I'm starting to feel that way :b1: But this is a bit confusing to me for some reason and I DO want to get my mind around it before proceeding, even if it's not me who does the work, and even if I don't end up using the Dieselsite products.

Thanks!

Viva


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