- AAA Community
- On The Road
- Ask Pete
- Auto News
- Automotive Questions
- Road Trips
- Travel Ideas
- Travel Questions
- Planning and Recommendations
- Life Matters
- Life Matters Questions
- Local Happenings
- North Dakota
- Other Areas
- Our Current Sweepstakes
- Previous/Expired Contests
- List of Winners
- Suggestion Box
- Posting directions for Suggestion Box
- Member Ideas
11-30-2011 03:06 PM
I have a 1999 Hyundai Accent 124000 miles. The heat doesn't get hot. I took it to my local Hyundai dealership and they said they couldn't find anything wrong they just topped off the fluids. Now that it is colder it takes about 45 minutes for the heat to get warm it doesn't get hot just warm and I have to use the air conditioner along with the heat to defrost the windows. What could be wrong is the heater going or gone out?
11-30-2011 03:49 PM
This heater should be capable of blowing 90 degree temperatures when working properly. The possibilities to consider include bad thermostat, clogged heater hoses, heater core or radiator if it is a water delivery issue. (Note: thermostat and radiator usually create and overheating concern first) Otherwise you may be getting a blend of hot and cool air (delivering warm air) due to blend doors not fully closing (or opening depending on the door). This could be caused by bad door actuators or controller. The best way to know for sure is to have a qualified technician formally inspect and diagnose your concerns.
12-02-2011 07:47 AM
We've checked them out for you and we stand behind their repairs!
12-02-2011 08:17 AM
Check your radiator for rust. With the milage and age of your vehicle, your radiator might have gone bad. If you have rust in the radiator it might be time to change it out. The rust floating around in your coolant can clog up your heater core, it did that to me on my 1999 Jeep. Replacing a heater core usually requires an evac of your AC, so that means a trip to the shop. If its rusted out, replace the radiator then flush the system a few times, as it will take a bit to get all the residual rust out. You can also gently run water through both heater hoses going in/out of the heater core. Just beware that the core is designed for not much pressure, and if you blast your water hose into it, you could blow the core out and fill the inside with water. Using a combination of multiple flushes with water, a new radiator/hoses, and a radiator flush, I was able to get mine from no heat back to full heat. It just takes time to do it. Radiators on FWD vehicles may be a bit trickier to remove, you may have to pull out a bunch of other items in order to get it out. Look online or consult one of the Haynes/Chilton repair books for details on how to do it, if that ends up being the issue.
12-03-2011 02:40 AM
My radiator is just a year old as are most of the hoses for they had leaks. I did take it to the dealer and they couldn't find anything about it and when i told them about the radiator they said that wouldn't matter. The told me to go internally it would take 6 hours and cost over 6oo dollars so i couldn't afford that and they did not charge me for looking at it. I was there about 2 hours and they told me to watch for signs like over heating. So far it hasn't but now i am scared to drive it any long distances. If you know of a place that might not be so expensive i would take it under advisement. Thank you for all the information they looked at what you said and i think that is what is going to cost so much to look at.
12-03-2011 07:40 AM - edited 12-03-2011 08:04 AM
To be honest, I think the dealer is about the worst place to take your car to. They charge about twice the amount for any work, and they don't like working on older cars. I'd say most of the time, they don't seem to get the problem fixed. And since it appears they know that you don't know much about working on cars, they are now trying to use scare tactics on you. Not having heat, when the rest of the car runs fine, is just uncomfortable - but not going to cause your car to overheat. Besides, you have a temperature gauge right up front you can watch. I would take it to one of the AAA approved mechanics in your area. But if you want to save some money, you might be able to fix it yourself.
Get a repair book for your car from your local autocenter (Autozone, NAPA [they have AAA discount], O'Reilyes, Pepboys, etc). Replace the thermostat if it hasn't been, its a cheap part and fairly easy to do. Check to see if your heater core is blocked. To do this, turn your heat on and get your car to normal operating temperature. Thats where your hot/cold/heat gauge normally sits when the car has been running, probably somewhere in the middle of the gauge. Probably will take about 10-15 minutes or so.
Now, locate your rubber hoses going into the heater core. There will be two black rubber hoses going into the firewall, most likely beside each other on the passenger side. The repair book will show the location, but its usually obvious where they run. They may also run one on the passenger side and one on the drivers side. Both hoses will come off the engine. Now, when the car is warmed up and running, with the heater going, both hoses should be hot - as hot water is flowing from the engine into one, then into the heater core, and then back out and into the engine. If one is hot and one is cold, then you have a blockage in your heater core.
If a blockage in the heater core is the issue, you can try to fix it yourself. Shut the car off and disconnect the two heater hoses from the engine. Make sure you know which hose goes where, draw a mini diagram if you need to. Take a garden hose with a controlable spray (so you can control the pressure) and squirt water (not full blast) into one hose. Water will run out the other one, likely with gunk, brown liquid, etc. Do that until it runs clear. Then switch to the other hose and run it the other way. Keep alternating back and forth until the water runs clear both ways. Reconnect the hoses and start the car again, letting it warm up and see if you have heat.
On some cars, the heater core needs to be bled of air. You can do this by getting on a slight hill (like a driveway with the front of the car up slightly and while cool, open the radiator cap and start the car. You will see air make their way to the top of the radiator. Once most of the air is out, or the water starts getting pretty hot, you can shut the car off and top off the coolant.
Its really a pretty simple task, and at the most you will need is a pair of pliers, screwdriver, a garden hose and some time. You likely have that sitting around the house or at a friends home. If it doesn't solve the issue, then I'd say it may be in the switches controlling your heat/air. From what I read online, the controls with the exception of the AC button or mechanical - meaning its a wire pulling/pushing vents/items open and close. You could try opening the dash up and see if something came lose. Another thing is to check and make sure your actual heat/cool knob isn't broke. Believe it or not, I had this happen to me.
Most knobs have a round section with a flat side. The flat side makes sure that when you turn the knob, the shaft spins. Well if the plastic in the knob breaks, then when you turn the knob, the shaft controlling the heat/cold doesn't spin - or doesn't spin enough. When I pulled the knob off on my Jeep, it had broke. So while I was turning the knob back and forth, it wasn't really moving anything. The knob cost $4 to replace off Amazon (which can be a great place to buy cheap car parts).
I honestly think you can get to the root of your problem, but if you decide to take it to a shop, don't go back to the dealer or whoever you've been bringing it to. The things above are very simple things to try, and won't cost you anything other than some elbow grease and time.
Here's a few videos on how it works.