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Old 10-19-2011, 10:59 AM
is thinning the herd
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Posts: 3,298
W201 Climate Control Problems

So the climate control on my 88 190D 2.5 is very wonky.

But I've been playing with it trying to figure out what the symptoms are.

The outer two vents (closest to the door on either side of the car) always blow hot air.

The center two vents always blow "cool" air.

Regardless of where the temperature wheel is on the climate control. And regardless of which button you push on the climate control.

However, if you push the defrost it will turn the fan to max and it will blow heat on the windshield.

Is this indicative of any particular failure in the dash?
68 280SL - 70 280SL - 70 300SEL 3.5 - 72 350SL - 72 280SEL 4.5 - 72 220 - 72 220D - 73 450SL - 84 230GE - 87 200TD - 90 190E 2.0 - 03 G500 - 06 E320CDI

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Old 10-19-2011, 08:40 PM
1985 190d
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: canadian border vermont
Posts: 481
'sposed to do that
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Old 10-20-2011, 08:51 AM
1985 190d
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: canadian border vermont
Posts: 481
All right, that wasnt helpful I know.... You need to go on ebay and buy an owners manual for your model year.

The climate control in this model is quirky: the center vents only allow outside air into the car, never heated or cooled. The outer vents, and also the floor vents, bring conditioned air into the cabin. There are also rear seat ducts under the front seats. Neither of my cars to date put a lot of air out back, but presumably when new this was a nice touch.

The defrost button only runs on high, straight from the factory.

If your system is working correctly, you can hear a thermostat click on and off when you turn the temperature wheel; this regulates the cabin temperature. According to my manual the "proper" setting for the temperature wheel is 18deg, which I suppose is about 65 deg f.
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Old 10-20-2011, 09:23 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Redding, California
Posts: 219
The only difference between the older model Tempmatic control units and yours is the air recirculation.

You didn't mention whether or not the temperature wheel has any control over the air and whether or not the cold AC is working.

Two things are very common with all these units and they are brought about by 'cold' solder joints in the circuit boards. Disassembly and resoldering the boards cures many. Also, the rheostat controlling the temperature wheel can go awry.

I've had similar problems and cured mine by resoldering.

I bought a used unit for yours by mistake when I didn't realize there is a difference between the earlier '85 models and those after '86. If you want a replacement, it's available. PM me.
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