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Air Cond...

10-02-2005, 02:19 PM
The upper level vents in my car won't blow air out... The air conditioning works fine, but it only comes out of the lower vents... 92 960 Wag... any ideas?

12-04-2005, 03:02 PM
The upper level vents in my car won't blow air out... The air conditioning works fine, but it only comes out of the lower vents... 92 960 Wag... any ideas?
unless someone has changed it you should have a heater control valve under the hood.(it will be in heater hose line)These sometimes have a vac.line that rots or simply unplugs itselfs.

12-04-2005, 05:49 PM
The following is my experience with the A/C vent controls in my 1986 740 GLE. The 960 system should be similar. Happy troubleshooting!

I don't need help with this one because I figured it out myself. However, others may learn from my experience.

Shortly after I purchased my car, I discovered that the A/C vent controls did not function. The fan switch worked well, but I would only get air flow through the Defroster vents no matter what vent position I selected. Also, air would be slightly warm no matter the position of temperature control. I also discovered the A/C belt removed from the compressor and the A/C clutch wiring purposely disconnected.

The previous owner had the car serviced at an independent Volvo garage in the "People's Republic of Berkeley", California. Two years ago, the shop discovered that the controls did not work and quoted $250 to repair, though they didn't state why they would not function. On the same repair bill, they charged a fee to remove the A/C belt and to replace the temperature control valve. Then, ten months ago, they replaced the temperature control valve again, for whatever reason.

I quickly discovered that these controls required engine vacuum to operate. I found two vacuum tubes that passed through the firewall. One went to the heater control valve. The other to a tee in a large diameter vacuum line. One end of the large line attached to the intake manifold. The other end went somewhere under the left side of the car. I looked under the car and found the line attached to a long, cylindrically shaped, plastic tank, mounted forward of the front crossmember.

I disconnected the main vacuum line from the intake manifold and plugged the tap. Then I disconnected the vent control vacuum line from the tee, attached a hand-held vacuum pump, and pumped down a vacuum in the vent controls. I quickly found that the vent controls operated normally as long as I kept a vacuum on the controls. This told me that I had a vacuum leak somewhere on the main vacuum line.

I went back under the car and unbolted this plastic tank from the undercarriage. It is held on by three bolts. Once I got it out from under the car, I easily saw the large crack that traveled half way around the far end of the tank. No wonder the vent controls did not work, there was no vacuum in the line. Not only that, the car had a major intake vacuum leak that went undiagnosed for over two years, and the independent mechanic that had serviced the car all that time, saw the clues, but was too blind to figure this out!!

This tank is positioned in such a manner under the car, that it is the first thing to be hit by large debris on the roadway. It appeared that the crack was cause by blunt force trauma from road debris.

The purchased a new vacuum tank from my local Volvo dealer for $47. For good measure, I replaced the vacuum line between the intake manifold and the vacuum tank. Once installed, the vent controls worked like new. I then replaced the A/C compressor belt, reconnected the clutch wiring, and now the A/C blows 40 F air in the coldest position. I don't think I would recommend that independent Volvo garage to anyone I know.

So, if your vent controls stop working, be sure to check for vacuum and the condition of this tank before trying to take apart your dashboard controls.

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