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Father of all macks
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Discussion Starter #1
Hey all, I posted another thread trying to diagnose the issue that I'm having. I think I've isolated the problem given the symptoms, and now I need some advice on how to solve the problem.

My A/C isn't blowing out of the dash vents, and when the dial is set to dash vents only, it blows out of the floor. The issue is most likely a problem with the Fresh Air Intake Door/Actuator, the device that allows the car to control the flow of the vacuum to the appropriate vents.

Unfortunately, I have not seen any good guides so far. There are plenty of guides on how to solve the problem in GM cars, which probably means that GM cars have a habit of having the A/C die. Before I start pulling everything apart, if anyone has a good how-to guide on how to do it, or know if those GM guides are good for mazdas as well, it would be a big help.
 

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Demon Spawn
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758 Posts
GM cars eat blend door actuators for lunch, very very common on every make and model GM makes from like 90-2010 anyways a little more info on your car would help us, is it auto climate or manual climate control? either way the actuators are near the cabin air filter which has an access panel on the passenger side center stack under the glove box to the left if your facing forward in the car (behind the radio and control dials) the blend door is up in behind the dash (never changed one on a 3 so not 100% familiar with placement) but it will be over there somewhere, should be under the glove box will be the blend door and the actuators usually attach directly to side of the blend door, there should be 2 a mode and temp actuator but may be 1 or 2 doors separate from each other. once you find the blend doors an assistant should help by having the car on while you watch them plugged in and have the assistant turn the knobs from cold to hot and then change the vent settings, you should see things move when this is done, that will tell you which is which. then replace the bad one which will be the mode actuator because it is the one for the different vents.
 

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Father of all macks
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Discussion Starter #4
GM cars eat blend door actuators for lunch, very very common on every make and model GM makes from like 90-2010 anyways a little more info on your car would help us, is it auto climate or manual climate control? either way the actuators are near the cabin air filter which has an access panel on the passenger side center stack under the glove box to the left if your facing forward in the car (behind the radio and control dials) the blend door is up in behind the dash (never changed one on a 3 so not 100% familiar with placement) but it will be over there somewhere, should be under the glove box will be the blend door and the actuators usually attach directly to side of the blend door, there should be 2 a mode and temp actuator but may be 1 or 2 doors separate from each other. once you find the blend doors an assistant should help by having the car on while you watch them plugged in and have the assistant turn the knobs from cold to hot and then change the vent settings, you should see things move when this is done, that will tell you which is which. then replace the bad one which will be the mode actuator because it is the one for the different vents.
Manual climate control.

I found this guy on amazon https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00TNIMOEA/ref=ox_sc_act_title_11?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=AD89NHI82Z4C3

Are these blend doors repairable, or are the symptoms I'm having a result of misfunction as opposed to damaged parts? If so, I could take apart the glove box, adjust the blend door actuator, and return the part if I don't need it.
 

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Demon Spawn
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758 Posts
its usually do the a gear inside of that actuator going bad or the connections stripping (they are just plastic) here is a diagram from zoomzoomnationparts.com: EVAPORATOR & HEATER COMPONENTS. AIR CONDITIONER & HEATER.. Fits: 2010 Mazda 3 | CJ Wilson Mazda Online Parts

you either need what is labeled as 5 or 12 (more than likely) in the diagram i linked to. i would suggest calling this place(its actually a mazda dealer in the chicago area called cj wilson mazda) and having them assist you, they assisted me with diagnosing and getting the correct light assembly on my 2011 they will probably need your VIN # but they can then usually find your stuff rather easy. just explain to them what you have for us and they should be able to suggest a few part numbers that may fix the issue or a better way of going about it. then if you want to order elsewhere you have the mazda number(s) to reference. it looks as if our cars have one blend door and actuator and it is called mode. what you linked to on amazon is number 9 in their diagram and called air adjustment control motor but then notes fresh air, so this leads me to think that part only opens or closes the vents to the external part of the car to put it in recirculate or fresh air mode. (the button(s) with a car symbol with an arrow through the front or making a u inside it) and does nothing for the vent selection part. it looks as if number 5 in the linked diagram moves the door to make the air come out certain vents. page 3-10 of the haynes manual has a pic of the part you need to inspect diagram is labeled 11.11a the airflow in this model is controlled with a lever that moves a cable, and opens/closes the door, the cable maybe loose or your lever maybe failing. or it could even be that the notch for your dash vent on that lever has been eaten away and it does not stop where it needs to anymore, by the way the lever i am referring to the haynes manual says is under the drivers side dash
 

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Does anybody in the Austin, TX area know a mom and pop garage that can replace this Blend Door Actuator (aka Fresh air Intake Actuator) for around $150 ? Mazda Georgetown (Roger Beasley) gave me a crazy quote of $750.

I am very tempted to do this myself, but the 3rd screw removal mentioned by a member in here seems to be a pretty tough nut to crack.
 

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"sidesonic.blogspot.ca/2015/05/mazda-3-bl-hvac-air-actuator-replacement.html"

and I meant the top screw as mentioned in the article (not 3rd screw).
 

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Demon Spawn
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yeah, I bet your issue is the part labeled number 5 in my earlier posts linked diagram. I am in the dallas fort worth area and do not know any shops in Austin, your best shot is to avoid places like midas, ntb and the like as they will usually charge more than needed or break something else fixing your original issue. google shops in your area and look for highly rated ones that are not a national chain. this is a link to a shop with a 4.6(of 5) average star review on google with 128 reviews, so that's really good. Auto Repair in Austin Texas | Ben White Automotive Service Centers or here is another: Auto Repair North Austin TX | Dave's Ultimate Automotive (they have 2 shops in Austin so a small local company will usually do you right, as they know their community) I am lucky there is a small shop near me called Benbrook car care and they are very honest and let me bring my own parts, they always give me the old ones back and charge good rates, hell they don't even charge a whole hour if it does not take them that long (charged me $40 to replace a caliper I had no tools at the time to change shop rate said $80 but the tech was done in half the time so that's all he charged) I brought the caliper and car to them for this and they bled the system and changed the caliper correctly and fast. or another time I changed the egr valve on my old 08 3 and could not get at the rear bolt to tighten it up all the way, took it down to them they charged me $20 to tighten that bolt and check the install as well as bleed the coolant system (egr valve has coolant run through it and that bolt being loose was allowing minor bits of coolant to bubble out and letting air into it.) never had them do anything bad to my car and prices are always fair, find you a shop like that and keep going there, the more you go the better you know them and usually the better deals and more stuff they will let you do like bringing your parts or using a free lift. (have not asked them for this yet, though it would be nice) I bet if they where slow they would let me use a lift that was free for a reasonable rate. but theyre always packed full because everyone around knows they do good work and have good prices
 

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"sidesonic.blogspot.ca/2015/05/mazda-3-bl-hvac-air-actuator-replacement.html"

and I meant the top screw as mentioned in the article (not 3rd screw).
hi, were you able to remove the top screw? I removed the other 2 screws but not the top screw. I can't even 'reach in there with my head to see where the screw is. How was that person able to see it? Does anyone know an easy way to access that top screw? thanks.
 

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maybe try getting one of those endoscopes you can attach to your phone to help you see that top screw.

It does look tough to get to, but I'm sure it's doable.
 

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That top screw is a pain to get too.. u can use a Phillips screw driver to feel around & take the screw out or use a nut driver if u have one long enough.. I changed mine early sept/oct last year
 
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