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Hi guys, its my first post on the site, but it looks like this is a great place for advice so here goes...

Vehicle: 2007 Rav4 Limited, 4cyl, 4x4, automatic trans, 180,000 kms
Issue: HVAC vents only blowing air from front facing air vents(4) [2 circle vents + the center console vents]. When pressing other directional positions the arrow will change on the display, but the air flow doesn't change. Temp settings work fine, fan speed works fine.

What I've found so far: I removed and inspected the Cabin Filter and it was as good as new.
When pressing the different air flow positions I listened closely to hear any sounds of motors attempting to change deflector positions, but there is no change in sound.
After running the self diagnostic from the HVAC console, it generated the following error codes on the LCD: 21, 24, 43

These codes defined as follows:

B1421/21 = Solar sensor Circuit (passenger's side)
- Wire harness between
solar sensor and air
conditioning amplifier
- Air conditioning amplifier

B1424/24 = Solar sensor Circuit (driver's side)
- Wire harness between
solar sensor and air
conditioning amplifier
- Air conditioning amplifier

B1443/43 = Air Outlet Damper Control Servo Motor Circuit
- Air outlet control servo
motor
  • Air conditioning harness
  • Air conditioning amplifier
Here is the link for the Error Codes: http://share.qclt.com/丰田Toyota RAV4 Repair Manual/Air Conditioning/Air Conditioning System (For Automatic Air Conditioning System)/0420015.pdf

HVAC Documentation: https://www.rav4world.com/d1/attachments/pdf/2006/ac_description.pdf


I've read a bit of material on this site and other sites and some explain that the fix for this is replacing the whole HVAC system which can cost upwards of $3,000. I'm not an expert, thats why I'm hear talking to you.

What are your thoughts, suggestions and advice?:confused:
 

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Your Humble Administrator
2008 RAV4 Limited V6
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The B1443 code is the significant one. The solar sensor codes seem to always come up for no reason. The problem is the air damper is not moving. It could be physically blocked by something that fell into the vents, such as a pen cap, Lego brick, or other small object. If you can locate the object and remove it, it might be OK. Or it could be a bad servo motor. There have been many posts about this problem if you do a search. The bottom line is if one of the plastic gears or other fragile parts are broken, that's it. You can't buy any of those replacement parts. Toyota only sells the entire air box. In that case, maybe you can find one in a junkyard.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Air Box Assembly 2.4?

Thanks James, so I'm working on a worst case scenario here and I looked online for junk yards near me and found an "Air Box Assembly 2.4" for $150. Its there more to it than a mechanic removing the current Air Box and replacing it with this part?

Here is the site:
Search Results

Forgive me for my non-mechanical back ground. Other than looking down the vents with a flashlight to find the said "lego peice" or the likes, I'm not sure what/how to take apart the dash to find the lego.

Thanks again for your feedback.
 

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you could go the cheapest route first which is find that small servo motor that has an arm to move the vents into place. i fixed mine on my old 98 civic by taking out the motor and moving the arm back and forth to un-seize it. after that, it worked properly. if thats not it, try manually move the arm that moves the vents. if that works, the servo motor is the problem. you'll need to find that motor, or find the assembly that contains it. try to "rebuild" it first. it might just need some cleaning. how long has it been seized like that?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Its been only doing this for a week. Based on what I've read, it sounds like the servo motors are not that easily accessible, so manually moving the arms that move the vents might not be as easy as it was with your Civic. I'm ready/willing/able to try it, but I wouldn't know how much of the dash I would have to remove to access this. If someone thinks this is doable in the 2007 Rav4 please give me a bit of guidance as to where to start. Thanks again for the anyone that replies to this post. Cheers!
 

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2008 RAV4 Limited V6
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Thanks James, so I'm working on a worst case scenario here and I looked online for junk yards near me and found an "Air Box Assembly 2.4" for $150. Its there more to it than a mechanic removing the current Air Box and replacing it with this part?

Here is the site:
Search Results

Forgive me for my non-mechanical back ground. Other than looking down the vents with a flashlight to find the said "lego peice" or the likes, I'm not sure what/how to take apart the dash to find the lego.

Thanks again for your feedback.
I clicked your link and what you found there was the air box that goes on the engine--where the engine air filter is located. My use of the term "air box" may not be technically correct--it may be called HVAC blower housing for all I know. But if you remove the glove box (not all that difficult, you should see it right there. Removing the blower would gain you access to the return air duct. You might be able to stick your hand in there and find the problem.
 

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B1443/43 = Air Outlet Damper Control Servo Motor Circuit
- Air outlet control servo
motor
- Air conditioning harness
- Air conditioning amplifier
The attached PDF file should help you locate the Air Outlet Damper. The purpose of this particular damper is to direct airflow to the various levels (i.e. Windshield, face and feet). So the error code seems to match the description of the problem.

If you want more information you can access the shop repair manuals by looking at Junebug's profile.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Broken Gear

Hi Gang, looks like we're getting closer to resolving this issue. I was about to remove the blower to inspect the area for any blockages (lego blocks, pens, toys, etc.) but while I looked around I found that the gear (in the attached photo) was broken/detached and could move freely. [Gear location is just on the left of the Cabin Filter casing, the gear is about 5" in diameter]
So, considering that if this gear is suppose to change the position of the dampers, logically this part of the problem. Unfortunately, I'm still not a mechanic and would really appreciate your advice on what to do next. Thanks again! :wink
 

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Your Humble Administrator
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So, did the gear break on its own or did some object block the door causing the motor to break the gear? You still need to take the blower out to see what's going on inside.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Black Gummy substance discovered

Ok, to keep this thread moving along, after we removed a few more pieces under the glove compartment area to get a better look at the situation (I found a ex-Toyota mechanic that helped me remove said pieces) we found the air flow vent (not sure the proper term for it) was sealed shut with this thick black gummy substance. He had to pry it open with a bit of force. He was able to put the disengaged gear described in an earlier post (which was warn a bit due it trying to force the door open) back on the servo motor and was making the servo motor move the gear to open different vents by pressing the HVAC dash control buttons, but wasn't sure exactly how to place the gear to align with the other threaded gears in the HVAC, so we weren't getting the air flow to the right places to match the buttons we were pressing on the HVAC dash controls. We didn't have time to go any further last night, but he referred me to another mechanic to work on this. During their phone call he said the black gummy substance that sealed the vent shut looks like "Dum Dum". Again I'm not a mechanic, but I figure those of you that are knows what he meant.
See attached photo to see the Dum Dum.
Its moving along, I hope to meet with this other mechanic next week, but as mentioned before I appreciate hearing the feed back from you folks. Thanks again for your help thus far.
 

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Ok, to keep this thread moving along, after we removed a few more pieces under the glove compartment area to get a better look at the situation (I found a ex-Toyota mechanic that helped me remove said pieces) we found the air flow vent (not sure the proper term for it) was sealed shut with this thick black gummy substance. He had to pry it open with a bit of force. He was able to put the disengaged gear described in an earlier post (which was warn a bit due it trying to force the door open) back on the servo motor and was making the servo motor move the gear to open different vents by pressing the HVAC dash control buttons, but wasn't sure exactly how to place the gear to align with the other threaded gears in the HVAC, so we weren't getting the air flow to the right places to match the buttons we were pressing on the HVAC dash controls. We didn't have time to go any further last night, but he referred me to another mechanic to work on this. During their phone call he said the black gummy substance that sealed the vent shut looks like "Dum Dum". Again I'm not a mechanic, but I figure those of you that are knows what he meant.
See attached photo to see the Dum Dum.
Its moving along, I hope to meet with this other mechanic next week, but as mentioned before I appreciate hearing the feed back from you folks. Thanks again for your help thus far.
Ah yes, I remember "dum dum", a clay-like substance used as a sealer for, well just about anything. It also refers to a type of exploding bullet. Not sure why that type of sealer would be used inside the airbox, or even why it would have blocked the door. Extreme heat might have melted it?
Sounds like it might be a problem to soften and remove this stuff. Good luck.
 

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...he said the black gummy substance that sealed the vent shut looks like "Dum Dum". Again I'm not a mechanic, but I figure those of you that are knows what he meant...
Not sure if this applies to you, but read through the linked thread. Forum member Wcshort had a blockage and took dash apart and actually installed a mechanical wire to move vent rather than pay for the expensive assembly involved. I thought that was pretty cool!

Then on page 3 of same thread, forum member Mkus found the black goo of which you speak. Cleaned it with alcohol. Mechanic said it was a common problem with the dual zone sysem.

http://www.rav4world.com/forums/96-4-3-general/169881-hvac-will-not-blow-defrost-windshield-2.html

I suspect the forum will see another rash of these problems like last year as the cold weather is upon us. Good luck, sounds like you have it nearly solved.
 

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This "dum-dum" could be a foam or rubber gasket/seal that has deteriorated. I've see this before in a Dodge I used to own.

As for the gear alignment, usually these kinds of assemblies have an arrow molded onto each gear pointing to a specific tooth. Sometimes it's hard to see, but it's kind of like a timing mark so you can orient the arrows to point to each other.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Fixed

I just wanted to wrap up this tread and state that the issues was all related to the black sealer substance was the cause of the damper sealing shut. The servo motor tried turning the white plastic gear to open the sealed door and it forced the gear to pop off the shaft.
The Fix was to remove all the black sealer around the damper doors (using some spray can of degeaser on a rag) and re-position the gear back on the shaft properly (which took about 15 minutes to verify that the proper damper doors/vents were opening with the matching buttons on the HVAC console).
It took the mechanic all but 30 minutes to repair and it, thankfully, only cost me $20 for his time.
I hope this helps anyone else that encounters a similar problem.
Thanks again to the members who assisted me solve the issue.
Cheers! :laugh
 

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Wow, only 20 bucks? I would bring that mechanic a case of his favorite beer as thanks. Imagine what a Toyota dealer would have charged!
 

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Wow, only 20 bucks? I would bring that mechanic a case of his favorite beer as thanks. Imagine what a Toyota dealer would have charged!
For a 30-minute fix, Toyota would charge $50.00 (half the hourly rate). Fine in my books. But $20 is better, unfortunately I don't know that mechanic.
 

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For a 30-minute fix, Toyota would charge $50.00 (half the hourly rate). Fine in my books. But $20 is better, unfortunately I don't know that mechanic.
Or possibly the Toyota dealer would charge you $2100 for the whole assembly + labor charge to take apart the dash, and not be bothered to really dig in and troubleshoot the problem like the OP and his mechanic did.

Plenty of threads here where dealer shop choice is to replace with new parts rather than try to clean or repair malfunctioning old parts.
 

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Or possibly the Toyota dealer would charge you $2100 for the whole assembly + labor charge to take apart the dash, and not be bothered to really dig in and troubleshoot the problem like the OP and his mechanic did.
.
Perhaps. Perhaps not. But it's definitely something I'd check out anyways and then go from there. It's free to ask.
 

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were you able to remove the blower housing without removing the upper and lower dash?
J_LeBlanc's last activity on the forum was his "Fixed" post from two years ago but I'd surmise from how easy it was that virtually nothing was removed except the black sealer.
 
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