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post #1 of (permalink) Old 09-02-2018 Thread Starter
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HVAC Actuators

So I boight a 2012 iImpala LT with 32,0000 miles on it. That was this past January. Immediately the recirc actuator went bad. I took it back to the dealer and they replaced it. 3 weeks later,it went out again. I replaced myself for $20 in parts, since the dealer was 2 hrs away. Then a month after thst the same actuator goes bad again. I replace it with warrsnty parts. Now this past week the wife tells me it is doing it again.
I've watchef the videos and have done it exactly like Klowny and all the rest have done.
Today, I unplugged the stupid thing, but before I did I noticed something. When using the recirc and outiside air buttons it worked normally. But whem it was in the fresh air position and you turned the passenger side control off of cold to warm the door shuts and starts the pecking noise.
Is there away to reset the settings for the stops without going to a dealer?
For mow I'm leaving it unplugged.
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 09-02-2018
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Originally Posted by gamartin View Post
So I boight a 2012 iImpala LT with 32,0000 miles on it. That was this past January. Immediately the recirc actuator went bad. I took it back to the dealer and they replaced it. 3 weeks later,it went out again. I replaced myself for $20 in parts, since the dealer was 2 hrs away. Then a month after thst the same actuator goes bad again. I replace it with warrsnty parts. Now this past week the wife tells me it is doing it again.
I've watchef the videos and have done it exactly like Klowny and all the rest have done.
Today, I unplugged the stupid thing, but before I did I noticed something. When using the recirc and outiside air buttons it worked normally. But whem it was in the fresh air position and you turned the passenger side control off of cold to warm the door shuts and starts the pecking noise.
Is there away to reset the settings for the stops without going to a dealer?
For mow I'm leaving it unplugged.
Leaving it disconnected and stuck in the fresh air position may be tolerable - that is, it may be an acceptable long term solution

But if you want to fix it once and for all, try this: (with the actuator removed) turn the shaft by hand with some pliers. See how it feels. Does it tend to stick at either end, or is it stiff to turn at any point along its range?

Since this actuator is near the air inlet, it may be that you picked up some crud - rotten leaves, bird doo, mosquito guts, etc - that has gummed up the damper and is causing it to stick which in turn is causing the actuator to fail.

For sure, your results make it clear the root cause is somewhere other than the actuator.

HTH.

Doug

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If your socket set is all the same brand, you might be a city slicker.

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Yes, every time I have been able to turn it full stroke by hand, without using anything for leverage. So I can say for sure itbis not hanging up. That is what I find strange. The fresh air/ recirc buttons it works perfectly, but move the passenger side temp to anything but cold, it shuts and chatters. It is like there are 2 different parameters for the stop when it closes.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 09-02-2018
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Originally Posted by gamartin View Post
Yes, every time I have been able to turn it full stroke by hand, without using anything for leverage. So I can say for sure itbis not hanging up. That is what I find strange. The fresh air/ recirc buttons it works perfectly, but move the passenger side temp to anything but cold, it shuts and chatters. It is like there are 2 different parameters for the stop when it closes.
At this point, I'm thinking AC controls. The way they're supposed to work is to sense the current going to the motor while it's being driven. When the actuator gets to its limit (all the way open or closed), the motor will stall and the current will surge. When the controller senses this, it's supposed to stop sending power to the actuator.

My theory is that yours never senses the current surge and keeps sending power to the motor until the gears inside the actuator fail resulting in the clicking. Between this and the other issue you described, the AC controls sound fubar'd. It may be worth that long drive back to the dealer on that one (if it's still under warranty). Make sure you show them the receipts for all the actuators you've been thru. That may help convince them it's not the actuator and quickly move on to the controls.

Doug

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If your socket set is all the same brand, you might be a city slicker.

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post #5 of (permalink) Old 09-08-2018
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gamartin View Post
Yes, every time I have been able to turn it full stroke by hand, without using anything for leverage. So I can say for sure itbis not hanging up. That is what I find strange. The fresh air/ recirc buttons it works perfectly, but move the passenger side temp to anything but cold, it shuts and chatters. It is like there are 2 different parameters for the stop when it closes.
Re-reading this, I need to ask, when you move the passenger side hot/cold control, are you sure it's the recirc damper shutting and chattering? Or could it be the passenger side hot/cold blend door causing it? Being on the passenger side, they are close enough to each other that they can be mixed up.

Doug

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_

If your socket set is all the same brand, you might be a city slicker.

.
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 09-09-2018 Thread Starter
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Doug, I've had the glovebox door down and watching and feeling the recirc door actuator. It is definitely it.
I'vehad it disconnected by unplugging it for the last week and no noise. Plugged it back in and same thing. Somewhere I read that the dealer can reprogram the points for the stops, which were based on current draw. Not sure if this is what needs to happen, or the head unit is bad.
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 09-09-2018
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Have you tried the recalibration procedure? From what I remember, these things will automatically calibrate themselves after the battery is disconnected (I think, search the forum for the exact procedure). Worth a shot...
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Figured I'd reply with the procedure since I literally had to do this today on my 2013.
The other day I got in my car and turned on the AC but it came out at the floor. It was set to the dash. Checked the other positions, when set to floor, it came out of dash. Defrost position was unchanged.
Very strange, never had that happen before. After a few days, it never seemed to fix itself, and I remember the re-calibration procedure I had to do once for a different reason.
Having done this twice now, I'm confident in the procedure. I did find this elsewhere on this forums some time ago, though I think it has a few extra steps.

Actuator Recalibration Procedure
2012-2013, 2014-2016 Limited - This procedure should work on all 8th gens, but I believe the fuse you need to pull is labeled differently prior to 2012

(1) With the car off, pop the hood, and open the fuse box on the far left side.
(2) (2012-2016) Using the diagram underneath the cover, find the 10A fuse labeled "DISPLAY" and remove it. Should be on the upper section.
(3) Start car & let it run a few minutes. You'll notice your dash display doesn't come on.
(4) Turn the car off and go use the bathroom (or just wait a few minutes)
(5) Put the fuse back in, and start the car. You'll see the dash display light up, and you should hear the actuators resetting their position. Don't mess with controls until they're done.
(6) Once you don't hear the actuators moving anymore, test it.

I can't remember why I had to do this the first time, although I'm sure it's in the original thread I learned how to do this. At least I know, it works for more than one problem.
If anything, at least there's now 2 places in the forums where this can be found. Might be more helpful for those coming here from Google Searches, which is how I found the place.
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^ Iirc, I think pulling the underhood red 10 amp display fuse may reboot the mode (vent) actuator, but doesn't reset/recalibrate the recirc or 2 temp actuators.
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You may be right, but I know when I first came across the instructions, people referred to it as, "resetting" it.
When the fuse is re-inserted and the car cranked, it also sounds like each vent motor(actuator?) is "calibrating" itself by moving to all extremes of each setting and taking the reading to determine where the position is at, and once finished (takes about 30 seconds) it seems to know what position it is in, and everything works as it should.
I'm not sure what it's called, but it sure sounds like it's re calibrating itself, but I can't see it either to really know. Either way, it's working.
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Last edited by kamikazeedriver; 1 Week Ago at 05:58 PM. Reason: felt like I came across argumentative
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Come to think of it, pulling the display fuse and/or disconnecting the neg. batt. cable may "reset" all (4) actuators, but the only actuator problem I've had it cure is the mode (vent) actuator. The other 3 actuators (recirc and 2 temp) I've always had to replace even after the "reboot".
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