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F30 / F31 / F32 / F33 (2012 - current)
The sixth generation 3 series, chassis code F30. 2013 model year 328i and 335i sedans now in production. Read the F30 frequently asked question thread for all your basic question and dive into all the details in the ultimate F30 information thread.

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  #1  
Old 05-26-2012, 07:42 AM
zznalg zznalg is offline
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328i climate control question

My 2012 328i manual has Premium, Cold, Sport Line packages. My question is whether the climate control system can automatically adjust fan speed as well as temperature output. So far, I have not observed the fan speed changing at any time. So, at times the car doesn't cool down adequately and at other times it is too cool.

I have not found any setting to modify these functions in iDrive. Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks.
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  #2  
Old 05-26-2012, 08:12 AM
zznalg zznalg is offline
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Btw, after reading the manual, it's still a bit unclear. I've got the automatic climate control. The manual speaks of adjusting the intensity of the system by manually adjusting the fan speed while in automatic-mode. But, it goes on to say that the system automatically adjusts air-volume. That sounds inconsistent but, I'm hoping it's just the writing that's unclear. However, as I mentioned, I haven't noticed the system automatically adjusting air-volume/fan-speed while in automatic-mode.
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  #3  
Old 05-26-2012, 08:30 AM
E90 Enthusiast E90 Enthusiast is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zznalg View Post
Btw, after reading the manual, it's still a bit unclear. I've got the automatic climate control. The manual speaks of adjusting the intensity of the system by manually adjusting the fan speed while in automatic-mode. But, it goes on to say that the system automatically adjusts air-volume. That sounds inconsistent but, I'm hoping it's just the writing that's unclear. However, as I mentioned, I haven't noticed the system automatically adjusting air-volume/fan-speed while in automatic-mode.
If it's like my 2011 335, even with auto 'on', you have the ability to fine tune how quickly the fan cools to its desired temperature. I usually keep the fan speed in the middle position, while still in 'auto' mode. However, there are times when the fan is blowing too loudly so I'll lower the fan speed. My thought is that the fan will just run longer at the lower speed until the desired temperature is reached. Make sense?
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Last edited by E90 Enthusiast; 05-26-2012 at 08:31 AM.
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  #4  
Old 05-26-2012, 11:34 AM
zznalg zznalg is offline
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Originally Posted by E90 Enthusiast View Post
If it's like my 2011 335, even with auto 'on', you have the ability to fine tune how quickly the fan cools to its desired temperature. I usually keep the fan speed in the middle position, while still in 'auto' mode. However, there are times when the fan is blowing too loudly so I'll lower the fan speed. My thought is that the fan will just run longer at the lower speed until the desired temperature is reached. Make sense?
I do know you have the option to fine-tune/adjust the fan speed. But, can the system automatically adjust fan speed or are you required to adjust it manually?
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  #5  
Old 05-26-2012, 01:43 PM
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Originally Posted by zznalg View Post
I do know you have the option to fine-tune/adjust the fan speed. But, can the system automatically adjust fan speed or are you required to adjust it manually?
On full auto the fan speed should adjust automatically. With the fresh air/recirculate on auto the system will choose automatically based on the quality of the outside air. The "exception" is when you get in the car when the interior temp is very high, such as when it has been sitting in the sun for a long time. In that case you need to manually select "Max". That will override the auto settings. Then when you turn off the Max setting it will return to the previous auto settings.
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  #6  
Old 05-26-2012, 11:50 PM
loosenit2 loosenit2 is offline
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I have the same package combination and my fan speed adjusts automatically when it is on auto setting. It has to be a large cap in actual temperature and desired temp for it to be really noticable though. For example the actual temp in the car is 85-90 and I set the temp control to 65 the fan will come on full blast.
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Old 05-27-2012, 04:14 AM
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Originally Posted by zznalg View Post
I do know you have the option to fine-tune/adjust the fan speed. But, can the system automatically adjust fan speed or are you required to adjust it manually?
If the system is in auto and you raise and lower the fan speed manually the fan intensity will still increase or decrease automatically depending on the temperature setting. In other words the temperature setting overrides the manual fan speed setting until the car reaches the selected temperature. If my car has been baking in 80+ degree weather I will hit the max button for a few miles, (AC on full throttle) and than return it to auto so I can hear the radio.
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Old 05-28-2012, 05:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zznalg View Post
I do know you have the option to fine-tune/adjust the fan speed. But, can the system automatically adjust fan speed or are you required to adjust it manually?
It should adjust automatically. Do a brief test: while driving, change your currently set temperature 5-6 degrees higher for both driver and passenger. The fan speed should decrease automatically and almost immediately. If that doesn't happen, take it to service.
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  #9  
Old 05-28-2012, 05:36 PM
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I sort of observed the same thing in my all day test of an F30 in SoCal a month ago, the climate system did not adapt to the changing coastal temps on the PCH nearly as fast as I would have liked and I did not notice much, if any, change in the fan speed. With my Audi if you get into the car and the cabin is warm the AC will come on extremely aggressively for several minutes to clear the cabin of hot air, with no driver intervention necessary.
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  #10  
Old 05-28-2012, 08:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by voip-ninja View Post
I sort of observed the same thing in my all day test of an F30 in SoCal a month ago, the climate system did not adapt to the changing coastal temps on the PCH nearly as fast as I would have liked and I did not notice much, if any, change in the fan speed. With my Audi if you get into the car and the cabin is warm the AC will come on extremely aggressively for several minutes to clear the cabin of hot air, with no driver intervention necessary.
Yeah, three BMWs and never had one where the HVAC could keep up with SoCal temperature changes on the same drive. If you figure 1 degree higher per mile inland and you start at the coast, within 4-5 miles the AC should react. Never really did. It was a small pet peeve but even my cheapo Mazda3's automatic climate control is more responsive than anything I've had in a BMW.
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  #11  
Old 05-29-2012, 06:33 AM
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The BMW HVAC system is pretty conservative, I assume its an attempt to save fuel. Does the F30 have a max button? The fan speed can also be adjusted manually while the system remains in auto.
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  #12  
Old 05-29-2012, 12:36 PM
CC Brown CC Brown is offline
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I set my fan on high all the time. When the set temp is reached in the car the fan slows back down. If the temp in car is different from set point fans blows at highest speed(since I have it set there) until car temp is reached. So the fan is automatic!

Took me awhile to figure this out.
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  #13  
Old 05-29-2012, 08:15 PM
zznalg zznalg is offline
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Originally Posted by CC Brown View Post
I set my fan on high all the time. When the set temp is reached in the car the fan slows back down. If the temp in car is different from set point fans blows at highest speed(since I have it set there) until car temp is reached. So the fan is automatic!

Took me awhile to figure this out.
Good tip. I will try this.

I did try setting the temp much higher and then much lower than ambient. In both cases, the fan speed changed appropriately.

Thank you everyone for your help and suggestions.
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  #14  
Old 09-03-2012, 02:32 PM
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If you have Auto turned on, then the five-speed fan adjustment is adjusting the system's "intensity" levels. This means the system will still automatically adjust the fan speed, but with a tendency to use higher or lower average speeds overall, depending on which of the settings you use.

In other words, if you set it to Auto and set the fan intensity to its highest setting, the fan will automatically adjust, but it will tend to to blow higher than if you set it to a lower setting.

This is a huge improvement for me over my E90 system. I didn't have Navi, so there was no way to configure the Auto fan intensity and I found it to be much too low for my liking. I could dial down the temperature 3 or 4 degrees and the fan speed might not change at all. I had the car in for service several times but they found nothing wrong, and the loaners I drove were the same.

For some reason, BMW made the 60 degree setting on that model almost the same as MAX, where the fan never really dropped much below the maximum setting. 61 was like normal climate control, but often not cold enough. But 60 was just the fan blowing at close to maximum. So if 61 wasn't getting the car cold enough (which it often wasn't), I had to switch to 60 and then manually adjust the fan speed to get comfortable. Silly. I don't see why the car shouldn't have a temperature setting that's really cold on auto mode just to please people like me.

I like my car cold in the summer and I like being able to set the climate control to be more aggressive about keeping the temp down. I'd rather have a cold car with a noisy fan than the alternative. Now, I can set it that way and I'm happy. Really, my only gripe with my last car, but it was a big one for me.
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  #15  
Old 09-03-2012, 04:04 PM
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After living with the system for the past couple of weeks I have to concede that I do like it better than the system on the A4 that this F30 has replaced. As pointed out above, the +/- keys control the system "intensity" level when in auto mode which is perfect for maintaining temperature but getting a little more cool air into the cabin on a hot day for example.

My CA also gave me a useful tip which was when you get into the car and it is extremely hot, just hit the Max AC button and give it a couple of minutes to vent all of the hot air from the cabin, and then you can go back into regular auto mode.

With my A4, if it was hot outside and I set the climate control to automatic, the system would be absolutely blasting cold air at a really high intensity level... with the BMW climate control I can adjust that intensity level to a level of my choosing, which I like.
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Old 09-03-2012, 05:25 PM
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Originally Posted by voip-ninja View Post

My CA also gave me a useful tip which was when you get into the car and it is extremely hot, just hit the Max AC button and give it a couple of minutes to vent all of the hot air from the cabin, and then you can go back into regular auto mode.
+1

All you need to do is set the temperature to 68 degrees and put the intensity to the middle. When you first get in the car, tap the MAX button for a few minutes. When the car is at a comfortable temperature, hit the AUTO button. I spend the entire summer with these settings, the only buttons to ever press are MAX and AUTO. No need to turn any dials, no need to manually touch the intensity, no need to hit recirculation, etc.

If 68 degrees and middle intensity don't work for you, pick any temperature and fan intensity you want, but remember to just toggle between MAX and AUTO, no need to do any work.

BJ
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Old 09-03-2012, 06:50 PM
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Originally Posted by boltjaM3s View Post
+1

All you need to do is set the temperature to 68 degrees and put the intensity to the middle. When you first get in the car, tap the MAX button for a few minutes. When the car is at a comfortable temperature, hit the AUTO button. I spend the entire summer with these settings, the only buttons to ever press are MAX and AUTO. No need to turn any dials, no need to manually touch the intensity, no need to hit recirculation, etc.

If 68 degrees and middle intensity don't work for you, pick any temperature and fan intensity you want, but remember to just toggle between MAX and AUTO, no need to do any work.

BJ
Outstanding! Finally. A easy to understand description on how to use BMW's climate control. This could be "Post of the Year".
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Old 09-03-2012, 09:03 PM
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Outstanding! Finally. A easy to understand description on how to use BMW's climate control. This could be "Post of the Year".


....and of course the infamous color wheel comes into play from October through December. Amazing how much this affects the interior temperature yet so few people know what it does.

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  #19  
Old 09-04-2012, 06:36 AM
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In addition to what has been pointed out, I also note that, at least in my 328i (F30), the fan is always in recirculation mode when the air is on. That is why some note the fan is so loud when it is turned up (with the AC on). The recirculation door is opened up under the passengers footwell. At first I thought mine was defective, but maybe it is by design to make the AC more effective. Put the fan in auto or outside air mode, turn the fan up some so you can hear it and push the AC button on/off. When you turn the AC on, you can hear the door open and the fan gets very loud (without any change in air volume coming out). This drives me crazy. I have to turn the fan to the lowest setting (in auto mode with AC on) to quiet the fan. I would be interested if others have noticed this. It may be something you don't realize unless you are aware of it.

Last edited by blonyskin; 09-04-2012 at 07:40 AM.
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  #20  
Old 12-06-2012, 10:24 PM
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Yes, I noticed it too...I don't like the sound of the loud AC and since the AC automatically turns on after every start to remind me of the loud AC...I just turn it off.
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Old 12-07-2012, 07:24 AM
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I didn't think my AC turns on after every start. I think if it is off when I turn the car off, it is still off when I start the car the next morning.
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Old 12-07-2012, 08:06 AM
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My A/C green light on/off is remembered across starts, but even with the A/C off when starting the car, the compressor does seem to run (the air coming out of the vents is much colder than ambient) for about a minute and then turns off. I guess this is a "feature".
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Old 12-07-2012, 08:11 AM
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My A/C green light on/off is remembered across starts, but even with the A/C off when starting the car, the compressor does seem to run (the air coming out of the vents is much colder than ambient) for about a minute and then turns off. I guess this is a "feature".
It's not necessarily a feature and I doubt they did it to annoy you. It might be an engineering design requirement to purge the system this way to prevent condensation or other problems from happening.
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Old 12-15-2012, 07:22 PM
BlackDog316 BlackDog316 is offline
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Yes, the color wheel in the middle. In winter it will blow cold air if spun to the blue side, so remember to move it toward middle or red in the winter, or middle to blue in the summer.
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Old 12-15-2012, 07:32 PM
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Yes, the color wheel in the middle. In winter it will blow cold air if spun to the blue side, so remember to move it toward middle or red in the winter, or middle to blue in the summer.
I use it in the inverse in winter.

I find that even at 68 degrees the heat is too much for me, so instead of fumbling with the climate control I just spin the color wheel to blue and I've got instant cold air on my face while warm are is on my lower body.

Putting the wheel at 75% blue is my default setting in winter. I push it to 100% red as the car is warming up, but after 5 minutes back down to 75% blue it goes.

BJ
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