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Hello All,

I've noticed several threads here discussing problems with the heating and air conditioning in the Challenger. I was having some the same issues and thought I'd add my fix, at least for a 2013 Challenger R/T.

TL;DR: There are three actuators that control the car's climate. A bad or stuck one might be why your aren't getting heat or A/C.
SAFETY NOTE: Do not try to repair or replace these parts with the car on or still hot. The radiator pipes you will be working near are extremely hot and not insulated.

There can be several causes for your HVAC not working or an annoying ticking coming from your dashboard. The most common causes seems to be either be the calibration being off or you have a bad/stuck actuator. In my case it was the latter.

There are 3 actuators that control your HVAC system; Two are beneath the drivers side dash and one is behind the glove box on the passenger's side.

The one behind the glove box appears to control the air re-circulation in the cabin/blend door. This is activated when you press in the left dial on your climate control panel. A youtube video "How to Diagnose And Fix Air Door Actuator On a 2012 Dodge Challenger - Fix Clicking Sound" shows you how to access and replace that part.

On the driver's side, one actuator controls the cabin temperature and is activated by turning the middle dial, this is higher up and tucked behind two (POSSIBLY HOT) metal tubes that carry the coolant from the engine to the radiator.

The other driver's side actuator controls which vents the air comes out (face, feet, windshield) and is activated by turning the right dial. This is the lower actuator and is attached to a white plastic part.

A youtube video "2012 Dodge Challenger srt8 actuators locations" shows you the position of all three. YOU DO NOT NEED TO REMOVE THE DASH PANELS, you can just pull the carpeted panels from underneath which are only attached with a few plastic push pins.

OK, so the good news is all of these are (relatively) easy to get to by removing the carpeted, soundproofing panels under the dash and/or the glovebox. They also all take the exact same part (Part Number 604-024) which you can pickup for cheap at an Autozone, AdvancedAutoPart, online, etc. I think mine was about ~30$.

Other than that you just need a T15 screwdriver to remove 2-3 screws, a small socket wrench, and maybe a flashlight and you can diagnose and replace all of these yourself.

There are several [email protected] threads that discuss how to reset our climate control and re calibrate the actuators. You'll know the car is calibrating when the rear defrost light (right dial) blinks when you first turn on the car. If you google "challenger defrost light blinking" they come right up.

Most of them involve turning the dials to their default position (i.e auto, coldest, blowing on face going from left to right) and then either pulling your climate control fuse or just unhooking the battery (disconnect neg then pos terminals), waiting for a few minutes, reconnecting the battery (reconnect pos then neg terminals), and turning your car back on. This works for some people but wont do much if your actuators are burned out or physically stuck.

In my case I couldn't control the temperature in my cabin. No matter what I did (fiddled with the knobs, added more antifreeze, reset the system by disconnecting the battery or pulling fuses) I couldn't get heat out of the vents AND the A/C didn't feel at cold as it usually does. Both my normal and extended warranty had run out and neither Dodge nor my dealership would help despite them having to address the same issue when I was covered. I borrowed a OBD scanner and didn't get any error codes so I decided to try replacing the actuators. I bought one and proceeded to test each of installed ones by unscrewing them and fiddling with the knobs to determine which one wasn't moving. In hind sight you might just be able to hear/feel which one isn't moving instead of removing them, saving yourself some hassle.

It turned out that all my actuators worked, one of the doors it controlled (upper driver's side) was just stuck and pulling the actuator seemed to unstick it. I ended up putting everything back where it came from, turning on the car a Tah-freaking-dah the heat and A/C worked perfectly. I'm going to keep my spare just in case this happens again but at least I know what to do next time.

If you end up doing every I did (resetting, unsticking/replacing actuators, topping off/checking coolant) and are still having trouble it might be one of the hinges has snapped, a door has gotten jammed to hard to get unstuck, or the climate control computer needs to be reflashed. The dealership might be your only option at that point.

Apologies for the wall of text. Hopefully this help anyone with the same issue narrow down which actuator is malfunctioning and replace it yourself.
 

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Hello All,

I've noticed several threads here discussing problems with the heating and air conditioning in the Challenger. I was having some the same issues and thought I'd add my fix, at least for a 2013 Challenger R/T.

TL;DR: There are three actuators that control the car's climate. A bad or stuck one might be why your aren't getting heat or A/C.
SAFETY NOTE: Do not try to repair or replace these parts with the car on or still hot. The radiator pipes you will be working near are extremely hot and not insulated.

There can be several causes for your HVAC not working or an annoying ticking coming from your dashboard. The most common causes seems to be either be the calibration being off or you have a bad/stuck actuator. In my case it was the latter.

There are 3 actuators that control your HVAC system; Two are beneath the drivers side dash and one is behind the glove box on the passenger's side.

The one behind the glove box appears to control the air re-circulation in the cabin/blend door. This is activated when you press in the left dial on your climate control panel. A youtube video "How to Diagnose And Fix Air Door Actuator On a 2012 Dodge Challenger - Fix Clicking Sound" shows you how to access and replace that part.

On the driver's side, one actuator controls the cabin temperature and is activated by turning the middle dial, this is higher up and tucked behind two (POSSIBLY HOT) metal tubes that carry the coolant from the engine to the radiator.

The other driver's side actuator controls which vents the air comes out (face, feet, windshield) and is activated by turning the right dial. This is the lower actuator and is attached to a white plastic part.

A youtube video "2012 Dodge Challenger srt8 actuators locations" shows you the position of all three. YOU DO NOT NEED TO REMOVE THE DASH PANELS, you can just pull the carpeted panels from underneath which are only attached with a few plastic push pins.

OK, so the good news is all of these are (relatively) easy to get to by removing the carpeted, soundproofing panels under the dash and/or the glovebox. They also all take the exact same part (Part Number 604-024) which you can pickup for cheap at an Autozone, AdvancedAutoPart, online, etc. I think mine was about ~30$.

Other than that you just need a T15 screwdriver to remove 2-3 screws, a small socket wrench, and maybe a flashlight and you can diagnose and replace all of these yourself.

There are several [email protected] threads that discuss how to reset our climate control and re calibrate the actuators. You'll know the car is calibrating when the rear defrost light (right dial) blinks when you first turn on the car. If you google "challenger defrost light blinking" they come right up.

Most of them involve turning the dials to their default position (i.e auto, coldest, blowing on face going from left to right) and then either pulling your climate control fuse or just unhooking the battery (disconnect neg then pos terminals), waiting for a few minutes, reconnecting the battery (reconnect pos then neg terminals), and turning your car back on. This works for some people but wont do much if your actuators are burned out or physically stuck.

In my case I couldn't control the temperature in my cabin. No matter what I did (fiddled with the knobs, added more antifreeze, reset the system by disconnecting the battery or pulling fuses) I couldn't get heat out of the vents AND the A/C didn't feel at cold as it usually does. Both my normal and extended warranty had run out and neither Dodge nor my dealership would help despite them having to address the same issue when I was covered. I borrowed a OBD scanner and didn't get any error codes so I decided to try replacing the actuators. I bought one and proceeded to test each of installed ones by unscrewing them and fiddling with the knobs to determine which one wasn't moving. In hind sight you might just be able to hear/feel which one isn't moving instead of removing them, saving yourself some hassle.

It turned out that all my actuators worked, one of the doors it controlled (upper driver's side) was just stuck and pulling the actuator seemed to unstick it. I ended up putting everything back where it came from, turning on the car a Tah-freaking-dah the heat and A/C worked perfectly. I'm going to keep my spare just in case this happens again but at least I know what to do next time.

If you end up doing every I did (resetting, unsticking/replacing actuators, topping off/checking coolant) and are still having trouble it might be one of the hinges has snapped, a door has gotten jammed to hard to get unstuck, or the climate control computer needs to be reflashed. The dealership might be your only option at that point.

Apologies for the wall of text. Hopefully this help anyone with the same issue narrow down which actuator is malfunctioning and replace it yourself.
Thanks for this post. I searched everywhere and this is what helped me. I had the issue of no heat, but instead it was just cold A/C. The defroster light would blink at cold start.

My issue was the same thing. The door seemed to be stuck. I did the same thing you mentioned and pulled the upper driver side actuator and put it back in while trying to move the door.

It started to work and I was super happy. Of course trying to get up in there wasn't so easy. Takes a lot of patience. 100% worth all the F bombs I dropped. ?
 

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Very Awesome thread I going through the same thing. Just ordered the actuator today for the passenger side.
I love the detail you gave, I do have a question and may have more.
Okay so when I take off the acuator how do I test them?I think you mentioned but im still a little lost. You can message me if more feasible for you.
Thanks
 

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I'd like to add to fixeditfinally's post. A Torx T15 does work, but the correct size is a Torx T20 (it fits better). Also, the tool I used to change my "hot/cold" actuator was a "Neiko" brand mini-ratchet set - PN 03044A. Amazon.com and Walmart sells these. They come with the T15 and T20 Torx bits. There isn't much room up under the dash to get to these actuators and this tool helped a lot.
I had a tough time getting the electrical connector unplugged from the old actuator - If anyone knows an easy way to unplug that connector - please share. I am familiar with how most of the car connectors lock in place (and come back out by depressing a tab on the connector). I saw what looked like an unlock tab, but it didn't help. I ended up braking the tabs on the old actuator so the actuator case would separate enough to release the connector.

I also found that my old actuator did not have any broken gears. Since I had opened the actuator, I took the one gear out of it that engages the blend door - and I inserted it in and manually turned the blend door. It wasn't stuck or jammed. It moved fairly easily in both directions. I put the old actuator back together and tested it - and it still works. I did put the new actuator in (PN: 68299450AA in case anyone wants the OEM part number). My original problem was no heat, and now I am getting heat. I do wonder though if changing the actuator is what got the heat working again - or - was it due to resetting the climate control system because I had disconnected the battery while I changed the actuator. If I can't get the heat to work again, I'm going to try disconnecting the car battery for 30 minutes before I mess with the actuator again.
One last comment: On my 2011 Challenger, the hot/cold actuator only has two screws holding it in place. I hope this info helps.
 

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The calibrate process worked for my ‘11 RALLY SS/T..

Never mind that didn’t fix it. Took it in to the dealer and they replaced the blend air door actuator for $220 parts and labor. Could have been worse...
 

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Oh man, this brings back memories of the blend door on my 99 grand cherokee. Can't believe this kinda crap is still an issue.
 

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Hey, dude. I had the same problem, like you. Do you know how long time has passed, before I have finally solved it? About 6 months. Long story short, I have changed many services for cars, even official dealers, they were changing the gas and there was no result. Soon my good friend, who works with air conditioners at the firm, it's their site - www.socool.sg/, said that he can look at what happened. "Maybe I can solve the problem"-he said. I was shocked when after twenty minutes out of a/c cold as ice air was blowing. He is a genius. So, I can recommend you to try addressing to other services, who deal with the repairing.
 

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Oh man, this brings back memories of the blend door on my 99 grand cherokee. Can't believe this kinda crap is still an issue.
Probably still the same design and parts! I have replaced the recirculate actuator on our 2010 Jeep twice now. Any time you stall out a plastic mechanism with mechanical gear advantage it is going to fail sooner rather than later.
 
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