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Old 11-15-2012, 12:35 AM   #1
iminhell
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Does your vent selector stick? Have you broken the cables? Read on,

So I think I have a solution to this problem. I can't be sure yet, but everything is looking good so far.

But first I want you to answer this question, Do you have a cabin air filter in your car? (if you didn't install it, chances are you don't)



So my blower motor finally died. It had run enough to ware the brushes down to nothing. So I installed a new blower motor.
But first I thought it'd be a good idea to blow the dust out of the vents. Thing is there wasn't much dust that came out. But boy oh boy was there leaves, sticks and other tree debris, all in little bits.
Hmmm.
Seems that leaves and such were chopped up by the blower motor and stuck on the back side of the heater core.
In the process of blowing all this out I rotated the vent selector back and forth. The more junk that cam out, the freer the knob got.
So it seems to me that debris is the main problem as to why things get sticky and break.

Now, I haven't had a cabin air filter in my car ever. That is 11 years. Which time wise seems to fit with others I've seen with similar problems, and no solution has been posted to my knowledge.

To prevent this, I'd say a cabin filter should be used in every car.


To get the junk out you'll have to remove the blower motor. Not difficult, it's only 1 electrical connector and 3 screws. But it's an awkward angle to work at. Stretch before wiggling under the dash so you don't cramp up.
Grab the air hose and blow all the debris out. Change the direction of the vent and blow again. Continue this until you feel you got most everything.
Should be good for another 10 years or so.

Best of luck.


Here is the file on how to remove the blower motor --> http://www.filedropper.com/focusblowermotor


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Old 11-15-2012, 12:39 AM   #2
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This is great info. All focus's can use a cabin air filter it is located under the cowl by the wipers. I think only the first model years actually got the filters installed from the factory. After that I haven't seen a single one with it, but they all have the spot to put them on.
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Old 12-21-2012, 06:13 AM   #3
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05-07 have no filter- on purpose. An earlier model Foci filter caddy can be substituted in place of the metal mesh screen if you can successfully remove the foam glue holding the screen in place. Something else will have to be used to seal up the filter caddy. Something like automotive window adhesive will work. Adhesive foam rubber should work if it's heavier duty type that will withstand high and low temps. The good thing is that the factory part bolts on the same way so there's no problem with having to drill holes.
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Old 01-31-2013, 02:26 PM   #4
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Here is a link for the broken cable fix:

http://www.focusfanatics.com/forum/showthread.php?t=293932

The selector mechanism is by the driver's right knee, and you can try and move it there. I haven't had to dive into the heater core on my Focus yet, so I can't give you any specifics on that.
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Old 03-11-2013, 08:15 AM   #5
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My 07 has a problem with sticking too.What I found is not in the cables or blower housing but the bled door it self.The rubber seal Ford uses gets sticky over time and doesn't release from the housing where it makes contact.If the center vent and duct is removed you can just get your hand to the top of the blend door and you'll feel it stick.As a short term fix spray some silicone spray on the blend door and work it limit to limit several times.This will last several months then it will need to be done again.
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Old 06-15-2013, 04:22 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fozziebear View Post
My 07 has a problem with sticking too.What I found is not in the cables or blower housing but the bled door it self.The rubber seal Ford uses gets sticky over time and doesn't release from the housing where it makes contact.If the center vent and duct is removed you can just get your hand to the top of the blend door and you'll feel it stick.As a short term fix spray some silicone spray on the blend door and work it limit to limit several times.This will last several months then it will need to be done again.
I tried removing the fan and blowing out the debris after replacing the cable,but it still sticks.In time if not fixed the cable will stretch and break again.

I'll have to try what your saying.
To remove the center vent,I'm going to lube the blend door,is it needed to remove the radio?Is there any screws that need to come off?

Last edited by roberted5; 06-15-2013 at 09:04 PM.
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Old 08-17-2013, 12:11 PM   #7
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I got new cable on and I sprayed the door that slams shut with silicone spray.It helped but it's not a repair,door will stick again.
The rubber seal does get sticky,was so in my case,and then door gets stuck if left for over an hour.
I find that leaving vent knob one click from full left or right will keep it from sticking and you can move it to other spots when needed.
If you do go to full right or left it doesn't seem to stick if you only keep it at that position for a few minutes.
Other than that I see no fix,unless you clean out where you can't reach and replace the door you can't reach or tear the dash apart.
I accept it as a one of the weak points of a Focus.
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Old 09-03-2013, 08:19 PM   #8
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Alright guys, everyone here is dead on accurate about the rubber seal on the blend door sticking. Wish I would have known about the silicon spray trick before I did the job, that woulda been nice!

This problem was driving me crazy for almost 2 years. I tried every jerry-rig method I could think of for a temp fix, but I decided it was time to do it for real this time. Pretty big deal considering I live in the midwest where defrost in the winter is a lifesaver.

The only real fix for this is to remove the entire heater core housing and replace. It is a hell of a job - removing the dash, crossbar member and all associated wiring harnesses. But I am an amateur and was able to handle the mechanics just fine; it just took a while. Took me a solid 3 days to get the job done. Get the Haynes manual - it is a must have.

What I did was practice ripping one of these cars apart at a pick & pull junkyard - that way you get to screw that car up instead of your own so you can learn what works and what doesn't. Pick a decent looking car, the idea being if it looks nice, it probably has lower miles on it, increasing the odds of getting a fully operable heater core housing. I lucked out in that area.

The part is I think in the neighborhood of $450 new but I got it at the junkyard for $60. You'll be able to inspect the blend door operation before you take it home obviously so make sure that checks out.

This job requires you to unhook your A/C hoses which will leak freon which is why its a good idea to vaccuum it out or have a shop do it. Reinstall heater core and have a shop recharge A/C unless you can do it yourself.

I'm almost positive this problem is created by excessive heat melting the little rubber flap that seals the blend door. Obviously it is designed to withstand the heat coming from your HVAC system, and I'm not sure of exact temps here, but I park outside usually and I'd notice after a couple days of inactivity things in my car (stickers, plastic, etc.) would be noticeably melted and I think that's what has happened here. Just speculation. I got one of those sun shades to keep the temp down in direct sunlight. Wish I had time and motivation for a full write up. In the mean time, good luck guys.

-Brad
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Old 12-08-2013, 06:38 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fozziebear View Post
My 07 has a problem with sticking too.What I found is not in the cables or blower housing but the bled door it self.The rubber seal Ford uses gets sticky over time and doesn't release from the housing where it makes contact.If the center vent and duct is removed you can just get your hand to the top of the blend door and you'll feel it stick.As a short term fix spray some silicone spray on the blend door and work it limit to limit several times.This will last several months then it will need to be done again.
My solution to prevent sticking in my '07 is quite simple and effective. The vent blend dial range is from 8 o'clock thru 4 o'clock position. If you don't want it to stick, just quit moving it to the stops at the 8 and 4 o'clock positions. My dial is never moved to the lower hemisphere...beyond 9 and 3 o'clock, so the vent dial no longer sticks. As for HVAC system performance, I have no need or desire to use the full defrost or full upper vent positions. A blend position suits me fine.
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Old 12-29-2013, 11:02 AM   #10
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Flap fix

Ref. Sticking vent selector heater controls on 2006 ZX5.Remove drivers under dash panel,loosen hood cable nut and slide off, unclip data connector and set panel aside.Remove 4 screws from selector control ,cables attached, and let hang down. Unhook the black selector gate and feel the action of both front and rear flaps.The main culprit is the flap closest to the radio so as you move that flap you should feel the sticking or stuck condition at both of its far end positions.A deformed internal flap seal causes this jamming effect, so here follows my humble solution, that involves adjustable end stops.I used a 1/16" aluminum strip 3" long and bent up one end about 1/8" at 90 degrees and mounted it on the heater box with short self-tappers against the link of that flap to provide a forward stop.This stop should be carefully positioned so as not to allow the flap to drop into its sticky resting place.If you are close the aluminum is easy to bent so as to get a finer adjustment.The next step is to remove the radio surround panel,disconnect cigar lighter,remove the radio, pull two cables and set unit aside.Drill a hole in the heater box and install adjusting bolt bracket as shown in the photo. It is important to adjust these end stops as minimally as possible or the mechanism will bind. After the two stops are mounted a final check before reassembly is to install the black selector gate back in position and work "by hand" the mechanism through its full motion to confirm that no stickiness occurs in either of its end positions and that it transitions smoothly through its various modes.Although the flap is not technically as the designer intended, my air flow is normal and the cable controls work properly. The cost of materials is negligible and the labour maybe two hours work .The Ford car company does not need any more of our hard earned money so I hope this helps some other physically challenged heater boxes. The cost of materials was negligible and took maybe 2 hours, with a low difficulty scale.


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