Front defroster stopped working - how to access system - Jeep Commander Forums: Jeep Commander Forum
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Problems / Dealer Service Having a problem with your vehicle? Were you treated fairly or poorly at a dealer? Warranty issues? Let us know.

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Old 09-29-2011, 09:05 AM
Adroc3905 Adroc3905 is offline
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Front defroster stopped working - how to access system

Hi Everyone,

I am new to this forum but have been utilizing the information for almost a year now that I am a proud 07 XK owner. Great source for almost all my questions so far.

I tried searching for an answer but found nothing of real use. Here is my dilemma:

I am currently installing a Viper alarm system (5900) in my 07 Commander. It’s a used system that I had installed in my previous vehicle and it’s reliable so I figured why not…..besides having RS in upstate NY is a nice feature. Anyways during the alarm antenna install I had to remove the sun visors to access under the headliner and I dropped one of the small black Phillips head screws down the front defroster grill….DOH!!!! I was not happy to say the least.

At the time I did not have a magnet I could tie to a string and fish it out and the opening is near impossible to see into as it is a 90deg angle. In addition to this I had to use my vehicle yesterday while it was pouring outside and the windshield fogged so yes, I attempted the used of my defroster. After a loud click (of what I assume was the defroster door attempting to open) it no longer will blow air out of the front defroster. It kinds of trickles out even on full blower motor input. In fact my HVAC only blows air from the lower and upper vents now. The cold/hot blending actuator works fine and so does the blower motor low-high. Is there another “actuator” that controls the defroster doors? I have to assume my lost screw somehow jammed the defroster door and/or burned out whatever mechanism controls this open/close feature.

I purchased some small magnets last night and tied them to a string but was not able to fish anything out. I have to assume my screw has fallen down deeper into defroster ventiliation. I am prepared to remove the entire dash if I have too but I really would prefer not. I was thinking if I can manually open the defroster door, I may be able to retrieve the screw and fingers crossed; the mechanism will begin working again. It’s a long shot but I have to try.

Any help is certainly appreciated at this point as winter is approaching.
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  #2  
Old 09-29-2011, 11:42 AM
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all of the hvac guts is in behind the glove compartment just pop that out and it should be pretty explanatory
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Old 09-29-2011, 09:55 PM
Adroc3905 Adroc3905 is offline
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Figured it out and I got the screw back!

Location:
If you pop the access door below the steering column and look to the right of the steering column you will see both blending actuators for the cold/hot and ventilation doors. The cold/hot is the lower actuator closest to the cluster controls. The ventilation door actuator is the upper closest to the firewall and has two off-white plastic arms connected to it on the 11:00 and 4:00 positions.

To remove:
The actuator has a harness and 3 torx bolts. Remove this first which then reveals the mounting plate. This plate also has 3 torx bolts , two of which correspond to the arms (11 and 4)and the other at the bottom around 6:00. Once this plate is free it will reveal the off-white arms and the pivot wheel these ride on. The actuator turns the wheel which then adjusts the arms to blend the doors.

After removing all the above I was able to manually open the defroster door, drop a magnet on a string down the defroster opening in the dash and extract the screw. After re-assembling, the defroster works fine. I lucked out big time. I was dreading having to remove the entire dash to expose the defroster ventilation ducts.

Hope this helps someone else later down the line.

Last edited by Adroc3905; 09-29-2011 at 10:01 PM.
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