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PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2012 7:48 am 
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I was participating in this post http://pontiacbonnevilleclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=19&t=23304, but can't seem to get the nudge I'm seeking. My '97 has had lukewarm (so to speak) hvac since I got the car last year. Last year I changed the compressor, which had a severe and obvious leak. This made the AC cooler, but is a bit too short lived, probably after this many years has other small leaks adding up to the fact that I'm confident in mid-summer this year it will need an up-charge.

That aside, the ECC now blinks (about a minute from the time the car starts) and I believe sometimes, possibly always (won't know until shortly again when the weather heats up) it blows "hot". Sounds like 90% certainty that it's my blend door actuator though that sounds pretty hellish to access. If I go there I intend to photo journal and share the whole journey.

My question regards troubleshooting. I don't own or have access to a Tech II OBD scanner. My cheapo scanner tells me engine codes only. Apparently a 92-'3 model would let me use the ECC itself to diagnose the blinking but not on more recent models. Taking all of the parts out of the way to reach the BDA (Blend door actuator) is a lot of work I'd prefer to avoid, since it means doing it twice (once to diagnose, then order the part, then do it all over again). How would a Bonneville "Superstar" diagnose this? Do I just need to get somewhere with a tech II or is that not even the solution?

FYI- The resolution turns about to replacing the Airmix Door Actuator (aka Blend Door Actuator) - it was a prettish hellish fix but there is a link to very detailed directions lower on this page.
In addition to those lengthy directions there are some other suggestions and images on this page that should make the job easier to handle if you're unfamiliar with it, have the blinking temperature control center and are not getting strong AC even though the system seems to be operating from the front side of the firewall.

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'97 SSEi, Majestic Teal / Beige interior, Bose, HUD, iPod ready! - SOLD! :sad: Check it out!
'99 Buick Regal LSE, Matador Red / Beige interior - SOLD! Check it out!
'96 Chevy Camaro - White w/Black / fire red interior, 3800, manual, loaded, T-tops, Bose - SOLD! Check it out!


Last edited by jonnevilleSSEi on Mon May 28, 2012 7:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:07 pm 
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hey im in the same trouble your in i dont know what to do and im jus a lil to big to try and take out the blender door actuator if you find a way to get it dont more faster then let me know

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2012 6:31 pm 
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ECC blinks under two conditions. The first is when the battery is disconnected and will stop after 50 key off/on cycles. The second is when it detects a problem with the system. It'll blink if there is low freon, or if the pressure is too high, or if the airmix actuator is bad, etc.

Quickest get-by solution is to take out the glovebox liner, and with a long handle screwdriver, push the actuator rod to where it'll go all the way cold. Replacing it is no joke unless you have small hands and thin arms.

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2000 SSEi - Resurrection in progress. Built L67 w/L32 fuel rail, ported heads, and cam. Camaro front brake system, GXP cluster, and much more in planning.

BonneMe wrote:
Looks like a Volt, Sonata, and Taurus got it on.


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PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2012 9:44 am 
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I'm going to (sort of) kick myself if it's just the refrigerant! I'll pat myself for starting here and not rushing into dis-assembling the dashboard to access the BDA. Let's hope a charge does it, OK. Concerned about the size of the leak, a charge last year only lasted 2-3 months. Any guesses on that? It has a fresh compressor.

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'97 SSEi, Majestic Teal / Beige interior, Bose, HUD, iPod ready! - SOLD! :sad: Check it out!
'99 Buick Regal LSE, Matador Red / Beige interior - SOLD! Check it out!
'96 Chevy Camaro - White w/Black / fire red interior, 3800, manual, loaded, T-tops, Bose - SOLD! Check it out!


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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2012 3:37 pm 
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so i just tried this and my wont stay on the cold side it flips back over to hot and and when i push it the cold side it blows hot as hell so do know why it does that
sandrock wrote:
ECC blinks under two conditions. The first is when the battery is disconnected and will stop after 50 key off/on cycles. The second is when it detects a problem with the system. It'll blink if there is low freon, or if the pressure is too high, or if the airmix actuator is bad, etc.

Quickest get-by solution is to take out the glovebox liner, and with a long handle screwdriver, push the actuator rod to where it'll go all the way cold. Replacing it is no joke unless you have small hands and thin arms.

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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2012 9:02 pm 
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Its the airmix actuator then. You will have to source a new replacement. I've gone the junkyard route before with these, and trust me, they're a crapshoot.

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2005 GXP - White Gold Pearl, no mods...yet.
2000 SSEi - Resurrection in progress. Built L67 w/L32 fuel rail, ported heads, and cam. Camaro front brake system, GXP cluster, and much more in planning.

BonneMe wrote:
Looks like a Volt, Sonata, and Taurus got it on.


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PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2012 9:52 pm 
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Just found it on RockAuto for <$56, used the Pontiac Bonneville Club discount code for an extra 5% off! And it's genuine AC Delco part so it should be good. I wouldn't trust these to a Junkyard given the propensity for long term breakage, age of junk parts, and how hard it apparently is (will know for certain soon) to access and swap. I'll report in when complete, need to have cool air ready soon!! :P

http://www.rockauto.com/catalog/raframecatalog.php?carcode=1247600&parttype=10721

OOOPS!! the wrong part methinks. That was for a manual control but apparently the part I need is a few bucks more, still not too bad compared to retail. Will have correct ECC Part# in a minute....

Pretty sure the one above is the non-ECC version, I needed the "ecc" version which (I hope) is below. Also an AC Delco part.
http://www.rockauto.com/catalog/raframecatalog.php?carcode=1247600&parttype=10721

ok, got it, Rock Auto has great part pricing but their site is pretty limiting in some ways (perhaps by design) meanwhile it links to a group of parts which includes both versions. Careful what you click on! (both links above are identical)

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'97 SSEi, Majestic Teal / Beige interior, Bose, HUD, iPod ready! - SOLD! :sad: Check it out!
'99 Buick Regal LSE, Matador Red / Beige interior - SOLD! Check it out!
'96 Chevy Camaro - White w/Black / fire red interior, 3800, manual, loaded, T-tops, Bose - SOLD! Check it out!


Last edited by jonnevilleSSEi on Tue May 08, 2012 10:37 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sun May 13, 2012 10:49 pm 
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OK, next step in the process. So my friend and I dis-assembled the glove box above and below and encountered some stuff in the way and didn't really know the best way to proceed. So since we have some experts here let me see what the court of bonneville says:

Here's where it starts, first you clean out and remove all the stiff int he box including your handy dandy owners manual in it's convenient slide in slot.
Image & Image

Then remove three screws which cover the glove box door holder. The only tools I used here were a 7mm and 3/32" ratchet, neither really fit tight, but I didn't have anything which seemed to fit better.

Image
You can see the three threaded fasters (two on left on on right) which hold the insert in position. When this is removed, it's easy to see how the glove box door is attached. and removed.
Image
Image
this tab is useful also as a handle to remove the glove box insert. Image
Here's a poorly handled panorama showing you what you see once this is opened. There didn't seem to be anywhere to go from here.
Image
I didn't get a good shot of the lower valance, so this just shows you where we are, this is passenger side, below the dash. there were two screws holding this in place, same head as others (7mm / 3/32"?) Once removed this is the only thing wired to it, just twist 90° and it pops easily out. Image
Then HERE is where I got stuck. Can anyone tell me what these items are and where I go from here to locate the Blend Door Actuator (or is one these things it?) I see at least three things, the large black box on the far left seems to be a duct/housing, then there is a, um, "thing" with the red wire connector attached, a bunch of wire bundles to the right of that, an "ivory white" support bracket with a "loosely held" gray box, and the circuit panel to the far right.
Image
AAAAAGHHH!!!
So in keeping it simple, who can tell me what's next? What's what? and where some of these parts are that I need to remove or work around. Perhaps if I know if some of these come out (and how) I'll have an easier time seeing what's behind it. It appears there is NO way to get to this through the upper glove box but some of what I've read suggests there is something I may need to access from the top.

Hard to see what's up here, hard to fit tools in, see where fasteners are or which direction they face. Any help is greatly appreciated. PS: The part arrived and the weather is getting warm quickly. d(^-^) Please help me make it a Pontiac Bonneville Club success story (Mrs. Shaw is counting on me NOT to do that (nag: "...what if you can't get the part to work...what if it still doesn't work?. ON AND ON I NEED TO HEAR THIS - blah blah blah") so Men, Husbands, Bonneville owners and GM enthusiasts... I need your help!)
When done I 'll get the rest of the progress photos up so future generations (oaf) of Pontiac Bonneville Club'ers won't need to guess.- thanks all.

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'97 SSEi, Majestic Teal / Beige interior, Bose, HUD, iPod ready! - SOLD! :sad: Check it out!
'99 Buick Regal LSE, Matador Red / Beige interior - SOLD! Check it out!
'96 Chevy Camaro - White w/Black / fire red interior, 3800, manual, loaded, T-tops, Bose - SOLD! Check it out!


Last edited by jonnevilleSSEi on Sun May 13, 2012 10:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2012 12:08 am 
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http://trialsnuts.com/ecc.pdf


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PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2012 9:19 am 
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Awesome file M. Pontiac 1. I think the overall process demo'd is the "long way" of doing it. Nope this is the easy way, esp. if you follow all optional details in the directions ^^ - DO remove the seats and DO add the extra foot of wires to the controller! (Removing the seats and whole of the dashboard) Possibly as opposed to the fast way (which Will Wren has indicated can take 6 hours the first time but after a dozen of them he's down to 20 minutes). I was relieved to see photos at the end of the file which give me a better insight into what to expect. Funny because it rates it at 3 ~ 3.5 on the difficulty scale and from what it suggests I'm a 3. I'd be a 3.5 if I had extra garage space, plenty of time and another car to drive while this one was dis-assembled. I'd probably rip the whole dash up at that point anyway to get at a few other details which are beyond easy access. I'll have to review it again, maybe because it's detailed and I'm in my Monday AM rush to get busy it seems like more work than required. I greatly appreciate the link though. Will need to look at that site for others next time I need to see the unseeable. if anyone has simple details to enhance what is posted above please feel free to reply, I'll document my progress regardless. - thanks.

Nevermind that, this has all the details one could hope for (unless someone might have an arthriscope for taking pictures where the sun don't shine) - looks like I have all the info as requested - big immense thanks. Also to make it easier for my (not always very sharp) mechanic friend to review I did a straight through reorganization of the process specific to the air mix with photos in the timeline. If I have any photograph or suggestions to add, I certainly will. Wish me luck, I'm going in! (may or may not be this weekend).

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'97 SSEi, Majestic Teal / Beige interior, Bose, HUD, iPod ready! - SOLD! :sad: Check it out!
'99 Buick Regal LSE, Matador Red / Beige interior - SOLD! Check it out!
'96 Chevy Camaro - White w/Black / fire red interior, 3800, manual, loaded, T-tops, Bose - SOLD! Check it out!


Last edited by jonnevilleSSEi on Mon May 28, 2012 7:16 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2012 9:34 am 
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Having some issues. I feel like I got about 60% there and had to stop for a couple of reasons. One thing noted in the directions above was "Removing the seat is a test". I was foiled by the test by what appears to be a "star" (or torx?) driver required to separate the seat belt clip from the seat or car.
Quote:
From JRS3800 below: The bolt for the seat belt and retainer is a T-47, the front seat bolts are 15mm and the rear bolts are 13mm iirc...

Didn't have that driver, decided to try it with the seat in, back and reclined. Realize fairly soon that 46 and not highly athletic and upside down and awkward was going to cost me a week of back so while I was in that position attempting to remove the air line clip from the controller I realized I was "at risk" of revisiting some serious back pain and should stop and call my friend who does this. And I was really hoping to have ac back by now. (sigh). So, in order to update my directions with sizes for the two different bolts and a spec for the bolt which holds the seat belt in place I'm open to info. I'm going to save this, brb with a photo.
So what exactly is that and does it need to be removed?
Image

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'97 SSEi, Majestic Teal / Beige interior, Bose, HUD, iPod ready! - SOLD! :sad: Check it out!
'99 Buick Regal LSE, Matador Red / Beige interior - SOLD! Check it out!
'96 Chevy Camaro - White w/Black / fire red interior, 3800, manual, loaded, T-tops, Bose - SOLD! Check it out!


Last edited by jonnevilleSSEi on Mon May 28, 2012 7:19 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2012 11:26 am 
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Just thought I'd bump this again but actually, the good news is that it "appears" I have cold working AC again*. Yes, my mechanic and I replaced the Actuator. Now I have both kudos and complements for the directions provided above .They are VERY detailed and the details are great. Some aspects are more complex even than indicated (and my mechanic friend is somewhat illiterate which didn't help). The missing details involved include the fact that there were more tools required than indicated. Specifically one section which suggests that "taking out the Passenger seat is a "test". Taking out the seat wouldn't have been a challenge to me, but there are special tools required. I've seen some posts around here indicating that taking the seat out is an option which makes it easier. An option maybe if you're a double jointed circus freak or perhaps have squid-like tentacles. But if you're a human around 6' tall such as myself, that isn't an option, it's a MUST. The Passenger seat removal is an absolute MUST and it required a Torx style driver, a large one (if anyone knows the size please fill in). Because I didn't have the required tools for this I had to step aside and let my "mechanic friend" handle it and I missed the details on how he got the control rod secured so that aspect is still somewhat of a mystery to me.

Now consider the one point where he was unable to see the fasteners which hold the Heater Core Cover in place, he took a call and while he did I looked up and they were EXACTLY as described, it's hard for me to imagine how much time was wasted because he just doesn't have his sensibilities. Meanwhile, the job took HOURS on a hot late-spring day. I'll gather up a couple more photos of details and will even try to assemble a full tool list. I do know this, it's not (on the 97) just 7mm wrenches, but you also needed 5mm, and I think even a 10mm. The seats are larger ones and they are in two different sizes plust the large torx bolt which holds the seat belt control arm in place. The seat removal is a MUST, the adding of 1' of wire for the controller as described, also NOT an option, unless you're name is Squidward Tentacles, it's a MUST.

*The reason I say "appears*" is that by the time the repairs were completed (started my ing day @11am and this ordeal wasn't through until 6:30p. ) we were testing for a noise in the steering, next thing I knew my fluid was leaking everywhere and now I have another repair pending before I can give it a good day-time test drive.

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'97 SSEi, Majestic Teal / Beige interior, Bose, HUD, iPod ready! - SOLD! :sad: Check it out!
'99 Buick Regal LSE, Matador Red / Beige interior - SOLD! Check it out!
'96 Chevy Camaro - White w/Black / fire red interior, 3800, manual, loaded, T-tops, Bose - SOLD! Check it out!


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PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2012 1:49 pm 
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The bolt for the seat belt and retainer is a T-47, the front seat bolts are 15mm and the rear bolts are 13mm iirc...


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