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2002 Subaru Legacy Outback 4S3BH665527xxxxxx
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The "panel" above the radio got popped out by the radio installer tech yesterday; When it all went back together, the RECIRC, AC and Rear Defrost buttons did not light nor function.

How can I remove the trim to see if I can plug it back in myself?

Or if maybe i just got super lucky and all those things run off one fuse that I can check...
 

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There doesn't seem to be a circuit fuse that could affect both the Recirc function and the Rear Defogger. More like a connector that wasn't replaced. However, the connector that carries the power to the control panel also provides the connections for the blower switch and the vent (air outlet) actuator. Do these work?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The "panel" above the radio got popped out by the radio installer tech yesterday; When it all went back together, the RECIRC, AC and Rear Defrost buttons did not light nor function.

How can I remove the trim to see if I can plug it back in myself?
There doesn't seem to be a circuit fuse that could affect both the Recirc function and the Rear Defogger. More like a connector that wasn't replaced. However, the connector that carries the power to the control panel also provides the connections for the blower switch and the vent (air outlet) actuator. Do these work?
Yes.. the blower motor control does work.

The best way I can explain it, is:

I drive car to Best Buy.

Best Buy installs my radio.

After the install, I jump in.. I push in the AC button, as per usual.

It does not illuminate and it does not function after the install.

I drove up to Best Buy.. it was working.

Tech ordered me a new part, told me it "shorted out."

The three buttons (AC, Recirc, rear defog) do not function.

Seems like something wasnt plugged back in.. ?
 

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AC didn't work after the original BB install, but on getting back to BB it started working? So, "intermittent"?

What part was ordered?

The blower switch works (control the blower speed). What about the mode control (that changes which vents are used)?

If it's only the three pushbutton switches that don't work/are intermittent, then, given the proximity of the switches and the radio below, I wonder if the three switches were affected during the radio install. I haven't looked closely at the back of that panel to see how it's set up, but this diagram suggests they're mounted onto a printed circuit board. The board might have been stressed/cracked during the work and that could lead to the three buttons not working or being intermittent.

Note also that there's bulbs to light up the switches when they're "on". Could it be that it's just the bulbs that aren't working; have you confirmed that AC, the RECIRC and the rear defogger do not work in either position of their respective switches (i.e., not depending on the lights to indicate whether they working or not)?

Slope Font Rectangle Parallel Engineering
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
AC didn't work after the original BB install, but on getting back to BB it started working? So, "intermittent"?

What part was ordered?

The blower switch works (control the blower speed). What about the mode control (that changes which vents are used)?

If it's only the three pushbutton switches that don't work/are intermittent, then, given the proximity of the switches and the radio below, I wonder if the three switches were affected during the radio install. I haven't looked closely at the back of that panel to see how it's set up, but this diagram suggests they're mounted onto a printed circuit board. The board might have been stressed/cracked during the work and that could lead to the three buttons not working or being intermittent.

Note also that there's bulbs to light up the switches when they're "on". Could it be that it's just the bulbs that aren't working; have you confirmed that AC, the RECIRC and the rear defogger do not work in either position of their respective switches (i.e., not depending on the lights to indicate whether they working or not)?
Okay so.. I too am a bit mystified as to what actually happened here, but, this is a LOT like my 1993 Toyota: If the green light on the dash panel is not illuminated/working, the system is not working.

Yes, I have verified that the compressor is not engaging with the button pushed in. Please see above.. it is exactly like my old Toyota in this regard.

"What part did the guy order" - Well he didn't exactly tell me, but, I saw pictures of this on the screen:



This could also explain why he offered me $50 to go away.. the part costs $50.

Interestingly.. I am pretty sure he knows he screwed up. He did make mention of the "board itself" failing; I still think that is B.S., but, it could be. Just maybe.

Oh, and it is not "intermittent," these controls have not worked at all since the radio went in.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·


I am willing to let them fix the problem because your guess seems to be about the only explanation, aside from "it just didn't get plugged back in" of what could have happened.

Really surprised at this from Best Buy but, hey.
 

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I drove up to Best Buy.. it was working.
I misunderstand "it was working".

There's basically one connector with most of the wiring for the HVAC going through it. If the connector hadn't been attached, none of the functions, including the fan speed or mode/vent control would work. So it's not likely a connector problem.

Let us know how it works out . . .
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I misunderstand "it was working".

There's basically one connector with most of the wiring for the HVAC going through it. If the connector hadn't been attached, none of the functions, including the fan speed or mode/vent control would work. So it's not likely a connector problem.

Let us know how it works out . . .
Okay, that was pre-Best Buy.. "It was working" = Nice, cold AC, whenever I wanted it, push the button it is green and nice AC and system as it should.

Post-Best Buy: No illumination, not working.

I really hope the guy changing the part solves it, yes. I will update!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
The blower switch works (control the blower speed). What about the mode control (that changes which vents are used)?
As far as I know, I can select these as well, but I know I can turn the fan on and off too.

Temperature control appears to work for heat, I always thought the cold and AC worked in conjunction
 

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I always thought the cold and AC worked in conjunction
Did you mean "the heat and AC worked in conjunction"?

In the manual HVAC system, temperature control is mechanical (not electrical) and is not interconnected with the AC. The temp control is via a cable from the panel knob to a lever on the side of the heater box. That lever rotates a vane inside the box that changes the amount of air passing through the heater core, from no air to all air going through the core.

When the AC is on, the air moved by the fan first goes through the AC evaporator, and if the AC is on, it's chilled. That air continues to the heater box, where, depending on the setting of the vane, the air can be warmed or allowed to bypass the heater core and come out fully cold. The only relationship between the AC and the other HVAC functions is that for the AC to work (i.e., AC compressor to run), the fan must be switched on.



On the three switches not working, another possibility is grounding. I believe each of the three switches basically is used to ground a circuit. For example, for the rear defogger, it grounds one side of the defogger relay activating coil, thereby switching the relay on. It's essentially the same for the A/C switch, and I think also for the fresh/recirc function. If they all use the same ground, and that ground is bad/missing, they won't work.

I would think the ground for the three switches is also used by other functions in the control panel -- the wiring diagram shows only one ground external to the control panel. Does the back-lighting of the controls when the headlights are on work? That would

I might be mistaken, but the back of the control panel (photo above) probably has a cover over it, so that the "board" on which the three switches are mounted, is protected against direct damage. That leads to some uncertainty as to how the three switches, or the area of the board they're on, could have been damaged.

In any event if the tech swaps in a new panel and it works, that should confirm the location of the fault.
 
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