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E36 (1991 - 1999)
The E36 chassis 3-Series BMW was a huge hit among driving enthusiasts from the first moment the car hit the pavement. The E36 won numerous awards over the years it was produced and is still a favorite of many BMW enthusiasts to this day! -- View the E36 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 04-04-2010, 08:55 AM
jpb-seattle jpb-seattle is offline
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Location: seattle
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 5
Mein Auto: 1994 E36 convertible
1994 (not digital) climate control flakey

My heater is acting weird. I was driving on the freeway for almost an hour, consistently at 60 mph or better. The heater is set about mid range (72 degrees on the little zone control dials and mid range on the blue/red dial between the heater vents). Temperature in the car would be comfortable, then it would start to feel quite warm like the temperature dial was set to max.

It didn't sound like the blower motor changed speed, just that the temperature of the air coming out of the vents was a lot warmer.

Coolant (engine) temperature on the dash hadn't changed. Still right in the middle between hot and cold.

I don't notice on my usual commute to work, less than 30 minutes with mixed hwy/city driving. Maybe cause I'm having too much fun running thru the gears or maybe car isn't warmed up for long enough.

I've seen some great posts and how to's on digital CCU but don't see much on the stuff before digital. Any suggestions on where to start?

Thanks in advance guys.
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  #2  
Old 04-04-2010, 09:04 AM
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Mr Gusta Mr Gusta is offline
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Location: long Island
 
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Mein Auto: big turbo hellrot sedan
when you go FAST ive noticed the air comming though the vents gets hotter especially when the engine is winding down
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Old 04-04-2010, 10:48 AM
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ZeGerman ZeGerman is online now
Warm Leatherette
Location: Seattle, WA
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 19,071
Mein Auto: 1998 BMW 328is
How is your coolant level?

I had a similar, but slightly different problem in a previous car; the heat would not get very hot unless I was under acceleration. I found out that the problem was being caused by a slightly low coolant level (radiator looked full, but the side reservoir was empty). There was enough coolant available to keep the engine at normal operating temperature, but not enough to reach the heater core. I topped it off and the problem was fixed. So firstly, I'd check your coolant level just to be sure.

The only other idea I can come up with is that your ventilation flaps which "mix" the hot air from the heater core are not opening/closing correctly. That is not a fun problem to diagnose/fix, since they're all buried behind the dashboard. The flap movement is powered by engine vacuum pressure. Do you hear any unusual hissing inside the cabin with the engine running?
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Last edited by ZeGerman; 04-04-2010 at 10:54 AM.
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