Thanks for the replies. As much as I'd love to use some of this stuff to negotiate the price, I already own the car...! That said, I got a *very fair* price on it, especially considering the mechanical work that went in to it.
Answering your question, yes, the climate control was on when I tried to use the recirc button. But now I'm wondering, after driving it a little more, and doing a further search on the topic, could this be related to vacuum pods? I ask only because I noticed that no air was flowing from the center vents when I had either the cold air or the warm air on, in any of the a/c settings...
Thanks again for your help!