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Re: New '96 9000 owner
Posted by Ari [Email] (more from Ari) on Mon, 30 Mar 2009 18:37:35
In Reply to: New '96 9000 owner, Chris, Mon, 30 Mar 2009 17:40:31
First- post this on the 9000 board - you'll get a much better response.
Checking if the AC compressor is turning on is easy - open the hood, and look at the compressor. The outside of the pulley (belt) always spins; the inner portion will be stationary when the clutch is released, then will start spinning when the clutch pulls in. With the temp set LO, watch the center portion. If after a minute of the engine running the clutch doesn't pull in (center starts spinning), then there is an AC problem. It will engage and disengage. A typical reason for the clutch not to pull in is low refrigerant levels due to a leak, but there are many other reasons (including a blown fuse).
If the AC compressor spins, and one hose gets warm and one gets cold, the AC is working.
The heater core in the 9000, like in many cars, is always hot. There is a flap that directs air over the heater core for heat, and from the evaporator for cold/outside air. The flap is controlled by a servo in the dash. The servo may be bad, but typically the flap or the arm it connects to breaks. Then the flap sticks in the wrong place (wrong being cold in winter, hot in summer).
To check, open the hood. At the base of the windshield there is a horizontal plastic cover that runs the full width of the car, held on with some Torx screws. Undo the screws and remove the cover. While you're at it, note how the drain tube in the center is routed.
Once the cover is off, look at the heater core - that's the box in the middle. On the right side of the box (facing forward, passenger side in US cars), you'll see a shaft coming out of the box with an arm on it, and a stiff wire connected to the arm going into the firewall. The servo is on the other side of the firewall. If the stiff wire has fallen off the arm, or the arm has snapped off the shaft, you've found the problem. Saab sells a cheap kit ($8 last time I checked) to splint the arm if it has broken. If everything looks right, set the heat to LO, and note the position of the arm; then set the heat to HI and see if the arm moves. If the arm doesn't move, then the problem is in the servo or the ACC unit driving it. If the arm moves and the shaft rotates, but you only get hot air all the time, the flap has broken inside the heater box.
posted by 192.249....
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