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Old 09-17-2007, 11:07 AM
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 18
Climate Control Mystery


Would someone tell me how the climate control system works in my 1983 380SL? How do you turn on the A/C and what do the other buttons do? I know that heat come out of all my dash vents and that the defroster button works. I do not think that the A/C works since it is not very cold although perhaps I am doing something wrong.

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Old 09-19-2007, 05:12 PM
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 18

No one seems to know the answer. It must really be a mystery!!
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Old 09-19-2007, 11:10 PM
Super Moderator
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Falls Church, VA
Posts: 5,316
It's no mystery. Most likely no one feels like typing a long explanation of how to operate your climate control.

Do a search on this forum, or look around on the internet. You can find owner's manuals for sale, and probably someone has put one online.
Chuck Taylor
Falls Church VA
'66 200, '66 230SL, '96 SL500. Sold: '81 380SL, '86 300E, '72 250C, '95 C220, 3 '84 280SL's '90 420SEL, '72 280SE, '73 280C, '78 280SE, '70 280SL, '77 450SL, '85 380SL, '87 560SL, '85 380SL, '72 350SL, '96 S500 Coupe
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Old 09-20-2007, 06:59 PM
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 18
If it takes a long explanation than I better go buy a manual.
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Old 09-20-2007, 08:41 PM
450slcguy's Avatar
Don't Tread on Me
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 613
Not complicated at all, should take all of 5 minutes to figure it out. If it's not working properly, thats when the complications arise.
Question Authority before it Questions you.
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Old 09-21-2007, 10:57 AM
Registered User
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 293
To check for maximum cooling on your a/c, rotate the temperature wheel (on the far left) to "MIN" (blue section)...make sure the wheel clicks into place. Depress the middle button (one arrow white and the other arrow shaded)....this button engages the compressor along with activating vacuum flap to recirculate. With the wheel on min and the middle button depressed, the system should blow out maximum cooling.....if the air isn't cold then there's a problem.

The button on the far right is OFF

The second button on the far right is Economy (EC). It operates the same as the middle button except the A/C compressor is disengaged. Also, only fresh air enters the system.

The middle button engages the A/C compressor and recirculates the air when actual interior temperature is 3 degrees F higher than the desired interior temperature that is set on the "Temperature Wheel" on far left.

The second button for the far left allows air flow from the defroster vents, floor vents and/or dashboard vents (the black adjustable round vents). The A/C compressor is engaged....fresh air ONLY.

The button on the far left is for defrost only....air is blown at high speed and maximum heat (the temperature wheel settings as no effect).

The fan has six speeds. On the far right there are three buttons stacked vertically for fan operation. The clear middle button (AUTOMATIC) operates on fan speeds 2 through 5. The bottom button is for speed 1 only. The top button is for speed 6 only (maximum).

When the climate control unit is turned on and the middle fan button is set on AUTOMATIC, the fan starts off slowly and increases in speed every 10 seconds. If the top or bottom fan speed button is depressed, it will override the 10 second step-up feature.

There is a lot more but this gives you some idea.
All the best,

J. P. Mose
1968 250SL
1970 280SE 3.5 Cabrio
1987 560SL
1990 560SEL
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Old 09-21-2007, 09:06 PM
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 18
Thank You JP for taking the time and having the patience to explain and educate me on how the climate control works in my SL.
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