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Mitsubishi Outlander Heating Ventilation and A/C

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tidester, host
SUVs and Smart Shopper
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  • Since it's been subzero here in Chicago lately, I've had a great opportunity to use the heater in the Outlander. There is a major problem.

    When idling, the temp coming from the vents drops DRAMATICALLY (luke warm at best). When moving again, the heat comes up to full temp.

    I've tried the "auto" setting, full heat setting, different heat locations (floor, defrost,etc...) with no difference.

    This is especially annoying since I drive in mostly "stop and go" rush hour traffic. The truck blows hot air, then luke warm air, then hot air, etc... It's very annoying.

    Can anyone else please confirm this? I'm going to write an extremely long winded letter to MMNA describing the now 4th major problem in this vehicle.
  • Yup, I have the same issue. Pretty noticeable when the temps are in single digits the last few days. Not sure if it's by design or not. The user manual is kind of confusing regarding how the heater works. It's really annoying since I have a remote starter and it blows luke warm air while warming up. So much for defrosting the windows with the remote starter. I guess I can add that issue to the the phone call I'll be making tomorrow regarding the radio issue I have.
  • Yeah my new Outlander does the exact same thing. I had the same problem with my 2002 Galant that I had before this car also. It is very annoying, especially when I live in the mid-West and depend on that bad boy for some heat! If I didn't have the seat warmers it would really be a problem.
  • I've made an appointment for the truck to get looked at. In addition, I've made a call to the MMNA's customer service department to inform them about the issue (in addition to the other ones). He said he'll log the problem(s) into his computer for future reference.

    I'd encourage everyone else to at least call MMNA to ensure that our problems are being resolved in a quick and orderly fashion.
  • Yep, same problem here. Funny thing is, if you shift into park then the heat comes back on. Back to drive it goes away.
  • rcpaxrcpax Posts: 581
    Here's my experience with my Outlander heating system. I live in NW IN so we pretty much get negative temps here too. In my Outlander, the fan (on auto) doesn't blow hot air UNTIL there is a reading in the water temp gauge. I have an XLS with auto climate control, so I just set my temp to 75-80F, set fan to auto, blower config to auto. So far I've been getting constant temps on this setup, in idle or running.

    From what I understand, the hot air actually comes from the heated air in the radiator. So inorder for the air blown to be hot, the engine needed to be sufficiently warmed up.

    And in this wintery conditions, the heated seats are a lifesaver. Definitely worth it.
  • Probably should have specified that I have the LS, so no climate control. Even after the vehicle is heated up fully, cool air is blown out when idled. Doesn't seem to matter if it's in park or drive, but I'll try and remember to check later today.
  • It doesn't matter if it's set to "auto" or manual. It still blows luke warm/cold air when coming to a stop or while parked. In addition, this is when the truck is up to normal operating temp.
  • After calling corporate and making my appointment at my Mitsu dealer, here's the update...

    The service tech used a digital thermometer and measured a variance of ~20* difference in heat between moving and staying idle. I informed him that it's probably more then that, but the truck was extremely warmed up from the 45+ min drive. In addition, it hasn't been subzero here in about a week.

    He had specific instructions (from corporate) and he told me that he was going to contact corporate and tell him what he found. He's going to let me know if that's within spec or not.

    I suggest calling your dealer (and possibly corporate) if you're experiencing the same problem. MMNA has been more then cordial with me and I'm really starting to enjoy the experience that I've received from them.
  • I talked with MMNA on Friday. According to the customer service rep I talked with, they are aware of the issue and trying to figure out a way to fix it. They asked a few questions regarding whether it only occurred when the defroster was on etc.. They indicated it would be taken care of with a service bulletin, and that the bulletin would likely be out within the next two to three months.
  • blackb13blackb13 Posts: 35
    Dealer still hasn't got any new information regarding the stupid heat issue. I'm suprised no one else has noticed this. Maybe they live in warmer climates?

    Oh well.
  • dodo2dodo2 Posts: 496
    I know some people posting on this forum live in cold areas.

    Growwise,
    How is the heating keeping up with the the cold weather in Toronto these days (-20 Celsius)?
  • rcpaxrcpax Posts: 581
    I live in NW Indiana, and we get negative temps here too. My Outlander's heater does a perfect job. No problems about blowing cold air on idle or when running. I just hit the preset temp, and the auto-climate does it's magic. So the heating problem is not on every Outlander. so for those having that problem, have it checked by the dealer.
  • marrigo13marrigo13 Posts: 15
    FYI, the heater isssue does not seem to be present in the models with climate control. Only the standard heater/AC (no preset temp) appears to have the issue. MMNA told me they were researching the problem. i have not heard from them lately.
  • blackb13blackb13 Posts: 35
    Well, mine has the problem and it has auto climate control.

    My friend has the same model and his does the exact same thing. It's really noticeable before the truck is piping hot.

    So when it's early in the morning, temps in the 20's, the truck takes some time to fully warm up. As it's warming up, I have the heat on 78 (for example). I'll start driving and after about 20min, the truck starts blowing nice very warm/warm air out of the vents (doesn't matter which setting), but as I come to a stop, the air gets to be cool/warm. When I start driving, it's back to being hot again.

    As I said, after driving the truck for 45min and it's fully warmed up, the heat is not an issue. The dealer did measure a difference of at least 20*f between idling and revving the motor and that's when the truck was fully warmed up (1hr). I can tell the difference between 50* and 70* easier then between 125* and 145*. That's what I'm experiencing for the first 0-20min of my drive. I only work 30min away from home, so you can see why I'm frustrated.
  • growwisegrowwise Posts: 297
    I leave the temp at 20 celsius and rest of the two dials in auto mode. Auto mode for some strange reason wants outside air which is very cold to begin with. I have to hit the recirculate button to make the warmup go quicker.

    Whenever I turn the auto climate control, AC light comes on. Why does it need AC in the middle of winter? Especially when it is trying to heat from subzero temps to room temp..

    I click on the middle knob and ac light goes away which is what I want until the summer... It also comes on when I turn the rightmost knob from auto to windshield defrost mode which I got no problem with though as it clears the fogging.
  • Blame it on the US litigation system. Car manufacturers have been sued because the driver did not know that you are supposed to have the recirc button OFF to defog. Windows fogged (by driver error), accident resulted, car company sued for foggy windows and faulty climate control. That is why many American brands don't even have a recirc option (my Escape for example).

    If Mitsu is going to offer an Auto setting they are going to cover their butts by having the AC come on when you select it because, god forbid, you should get in an accident from window fogging. They do give you the option of not having the AC come on in Auto mode. See page 5-31, Personalizing the Air Conditioner switch, in the owners manual. Most answers to these kinds of questions can be found in the OM.
  • dodo2dodo2 Posts: 496
    I second this. My other recent model (05) Japanese car works the same, except for the fact that the A/C light does not come on when on defog position. However, I know the A/C compressor is working. Also, when the heat is on and I drive in stop-and-go traffic, it blows warm air, but not cold. When I'm driving at the highway speed, it blows hot air. This is with the same heater setting and with the car fully warmed up. It may not help with the issue posted in this thread, but I figured that it may be a common design in today's cars.
    I don't know what is the rational behind it, but I'm curious to find out.
    Any update from MMNA on this?
  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 39,047
    AC's condition the air. One thing they do so is remove moisture. If you remove some of the moisture in the cabin, your windows shouldn't fog up as badly.

    Back in the day when the AC compressors didn't automatically come on when you hit the defrost button, I'd turn on the AC to clear the windows faster.

    I'd think if you were hitting recirculate, you aren't giving that moist air much chance to escape either. (Where's wwest? He'll let me know if I've hit the high points or not ;) ).

    Check out Climate Control Problems (Air Conditioning, Heat) - All Cars too. (jason0820, "Climate Control Problems (Air Conditioning, Heat) - All Cars" #426, 2 Apr 2006 1:43 am is one thread).
  • growwisegrowwise Posts: 297
    I noticed today something different. All of a sudden, scorching heat started coming onto my hand. I checked the settings and
    1. fan was in off.
    2. temp was set to 21 celsius.
    3. Recirc was off so that explains outside air.
    4. No ac and direction was set to auto.

    I thought the engine was getting way too hot and that hot air is coming in. Is this a normal behavior?
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