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X3 E83 (2004 - 2010)
Talk about the E83 BMW X3 in this forum!

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  #1  
Old 09-23-2009, 08:44 AM
Denver61 Denver61 is offline
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What's Tougher to Solve: Rubik's Cube or an X3 HVAC System?

Wow. Just bought a CPO 2006 X3 a month ago. Love the ride thus far.

In Colorado, we just had our first cold snap with light flurries and freezing rain. Time to fire up the X3 heat system. Huh?

I felt like Tom Hanks in "Apollo 13". I'm flippin' switches, twirling dials and nothing's working. Couldn't get heat out the front vents. Heat's blowing like a houseafire down below. Up top . . . Antarctica. Before global warming.

I mean, who invented this system whereby whatever you want can be overridden by that red/blue toggle switch up top? Bizarre. Auto, auto with A/C, manual, manual with toggle to red, auto w/toggle to red . . . "Houston, I'm venting something into space" . And it's not hot air.

Had to take it in to the dealer anyway for a clear bra install (a freebie since they screwed up my original paperwork). The guy looks at it, takes off the panel fiddles with a wire and puts it back on. Fires up the system and . . . .viola! Heat.

But it takes some practice. Full manual with the toggle to 'red" seems to do it. I think I got it, but . . . Good God.

Anybody else go thru this exercise?
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  #2  
Old 09-23-2009, 08:53 AM
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Evlengr Evlengr is offline
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Dial It Up

Never understood why you can't just turn the heat or cold on either.

For some reason you have to manually change the dial above the vent.

As many of us, I have had dozens of vehicles in my lifetime and none did this.
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  #3  
Old 09-23-2009, 09:15 AM
Tolland Mark Tolland Mark is offline
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I actually like this feature and I believe Volvos have it too.

Try leaving it in the neutral position and see if that works better for you.
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  #4  
Old 09-23-2009, 09:25 AM
Denver61 Denver61 is offline
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Yeah, I did few searches and I'm not the only one that has raised this issue. I'm just used to hitting the "heat" knob on cars and feeling heat out of all the vents.

Manual isn't really clear on this. Pretty much figured it out.

Not very intuitive though.
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  #5  
Old 09-23-2009, 10:57 AM
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I actually like this feature too and also like the large knurls that are easy to use even if you have gloves on. I like being able to quickly vary the upper temps if I need to.
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  #6  
Old 09-23-2009, 11:24 AM
noego noego is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Denver61 View Post
Yeah, I did few searches and I'm not the only one that has raised this issue. I'm just used to hitting the "heat" knob on cars and feeling heat out of all the vents.

Manual isn't really clear on this. Pretty much figured it out.

Not very intuitive though.
wait till you set the clock...
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  #7  
Old 09-23-2009, 11:26 AM
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I love the extra knob. I can use it to fine-tune my climate preferences. It's a shame that the newer BMWs went to a computerised system that's not as precise, versus the mechanical cable-drawn wheel on the X3.

Note that the knob only slightly varies the temperature out of the centre face vents. By default most if not all climate control systems blow heat to the floor and from the vent above the side face vent (the one that isn't adjustable)
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  #8  
Old 09-23-2009, 01:07 PM
UncleJ UncleJ is offline
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I would like just a simple on and off switch for the climate control, like everyone else has, It is a huge pain to keep punching a button until it finally goes off. If anyone can tell me how to make this simple exercise simpler, I would love to know it. It turns on with one button, why not off?
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  #9  
Old 09-23-2009, 02:27 PM
T1T2GRE T1T2GRE is offline
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The brochure shows model without the auto-HVAC. I always assumed that the auto version only came with the premium package. Can you even get an E83 stateside with manual controls for the HVAC?
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  #10  
Old 09-23-2009, 04:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by T1T2GRE View Post
The brochure shows model without the auto-HVAC. I always assumed that the auto version only came with the premium package. Can you even get an E83 stateside with manual controls for the HVAC?
In 2004 and 2005 the X3 2.5i came standard with manual AC. Canada may also have different equipment based on their year and model.
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  #11  
Old 09-23-2009, 05:45 PM
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I don't mind the wheel of heat. It lets me make the X3 cooler when I drive or a little warmer when my wife is with me. Plus she turns on the heated seats.

Our 530xi with idrive is not as functional as I want 65 and she wants 90 - the system can't handle it!!!!
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  #12  
Old 09-23-2009, 09:10 PM
dharmadoggie dharmadoggie is offline
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This showed up a long time ago in German cars. The idea was to have to option to have cool air at face level so you say awake, but warm feet too. The wheel of heat (like that term) is not so good, but it is a useful feature.
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  #13  
Old 09-24-2009, 05:17 AM
x3oiler x3oiler is offline
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ah the wheel - I use it to adjust for when the sunroof is open on a cold day - works very well by blasting heat around you despite the open roof.
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  #14  
Old 09-24-2009, 06:35 AM
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X3-terrestrial X3-terrestrial is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UncleJ View Post
If anyone can tell me how to make this simple exercise simpler, I would love to know it. It turns on with one button, why not off?
Just keep it pressed until it turns off, no need to push it several times.
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  #15  
Old 09-25-2009, 07:05 AM
UncleJ UncleJ is offline
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X3-t, thanks for the tip! I will try it out. I knew there had to be an easier way!
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  #16  
Old 09-25-2009, 07:46 AM
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No problem. I didn't specify what button....it's the button with the smaller "fan". Just be careful, if you leave it pressed after the a/c turned off, it will turn back on!
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  #17  
Old 09-25-2009, 07:58 AM
UncleJ UncleJ is offline
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Well I tried it, but it still didn't turn all the way off, it cycled down to one little orange bar and stayed there until I pushed it again and it went off. Better I guess than pushing it 5 times, but still not really an "off" button.
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  #18  
Old 09-25-2009, 08:07 AM
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No, unfortunately no OFF button on auto climate system. Let me check mine again to make sure if it cycles to the position one only....
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  #19  
Old 09-25-2009, 08:12 AM
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Evlengr Evlengr is offline
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Still prefer attenuated knobs over push buttons.

It seems the X1 interior has incorporated this design.

One of many reasons I changed my stereo.
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  #20  
Old 09-25-2009, 08:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by X3-terrestrial View Post
No, unfortunately no OFF button on auto climate system. Let me check mine again to make sure if it cycles to the position one only....
Uncle, you are right. I must have been confused with my old Jetta's Climatronic, used to work that way.
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  #21  
Old 09-26-2009, 09:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by X3-terrestrial View Post
No, unfortunately no OFF button on auto climate system. Let me check mine again to make sure if it cycles to the position one only....
Press the fan control speed button to reduce the fan speed until the system turns off.

Jeff
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  #22  
Old 09-26-2009, 11:35 AM
spokelizard spokelizard is offline
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Originally Posted by X3-terrestrial View Post
No, unfortunately no OFF button on auto climate system.
Here's what I found last night. I hit one of the far left buttons controlling ventilation flow (I hit the middle button for driver level air flow). The light for Auto goes off. Then I held the small fan button until all the lights and the temperature reading screen turned off! Result everything seems to be off! Not a comfortable way to drive, but it's something I didn't know was possible.

What I've been doing a lot for my personal driving comfort is keeping the driver level air flow button on, and controlling fan speed to my preference (I like a high fan). When I do that the Auto light is off, but I can't figure whether it's operating or not. Also when I do that the manual wheel is very helpful for tweaking temp.
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  #23  
Old 09-26-2009, 02:13 PM
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FYI: The defroster button also works great in freezing rain. It might seem like overkill in most other situations, but trust me, the strong heat blasting at the windshield limits the buildup of freezing precip on the windshield.
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  #24  
Old 09-26-2009, 04:11 PM
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Evlengr Evlengr is offline
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Originally Posted by AzNMpower32 View Post
FYI: The defroster button also works great in freezing rain. It might seem like overkill in most other situations, but trust me, the strong heat blasting at the windshield limits the buildup of freezing precip on the windshield.
Or just turn the defroster button low with AC and get immediate results without having your face feel like its in a blast furnace.
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1984 GTI Wolfsburg Edition Neuspeed and more
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  #25  
Old 09-26-2009, 07:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Evlengr View Post
Or just turn the defroster button low with AC and get immediate results without having your face feel like its in a blast furnace.
If the windshields is coated with ice on the outside, why would you want to turn on AC? I'm not talking about defogging here......
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