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Discussion Starter #1
I've read many many posts regarding this issue and it seems that everyone dead ends or has a simple fix which does not work for me.
I have a 96 328i and when I turn up the cabin temp I only get cold air out of the main vents and warm/hot air from the defrost vents on the dash and also vents at my feet.
YES I have tried to play with the dial under my center vent putting it all the way to the red and vise versa to blue. I even have taken the vent out to make sure the cable is connected and moving!
I read on one post for the e46 that a possible water valve could be the problem however I do not see a fuse for a water valve in my fuse box.

PLEASE HELP!
 

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The Canadian Prick.
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Or he's got air in his coolant system...
 

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The Canadian Prick.
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...and you did turn the hot/cold dial to hot right?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
hot/cold spin nob on my center vent is on all the way in the red.
And yes it sees like the door is not moving to open the vent. But I have confirmed that the cable is moving. I took the lower section of the dash apart under the steering wheel but can not see where the cable goes to confirm that a vent opens/closes is there any other way to know?
 

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Same thing happened to me last winter. Replaced the thermostat and bled the cooling system and has been blowing hot air ever since.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thermostat as in coolant thermostat correct? the engine temp comes up and stays right where it should with no problems. Did your car having and engine cooling issues? and you had the same heat from defrost only scenario?
I'm no expert this is my first BMW but it seems to be that if it was a coolant problem I would not get heat at all or at least get the same result out of all vents?
 

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BMWCCA HPDE Instructor
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But he HAS hot air, but only through certain vents. These are classic symptoms of stuck flapper/mixing doors, people.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I made some headway on this problem. I first took my glove box out following this guide.
http://forums.bimmerforums.com/forum/showthread.php?t=660015

and checked the damper motors on that side which appear to be working fine.
then I took the drivers side apart and discovered that the other end of my mix selector (the spinning switch below the center vent that shows blue and red) was disconnected on the other end!!!
So that cleared up my no heat from the vents but my passenger side still has zero heat. Now I think it must be my water valve for that side is dirty or stuck and must be cleaned so im going to follow this guide next...
http://pelicanparts.com/bmw/techarticles/E36-Valve-Cleaning/E36-Valve-Cleaning.htm
Is there 2 heater cores in this car? how does a separate valve control the heat for the passenger side without?
 

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Your heater core has a driver and passenger section. The valve mounted on the fire wall (just below the brake booster) controls the flow to either the driver or passenger side of the heater core. Make certain you have the heat setting for both the driver and passenger turned to max on the control panel. If you do and you're still not getting passenger side warm air (I'm assuming you ARE getting air flow on the passenger side) then it could be either your control module or the valve. I'd put the valve first on the list. The shaft seals internal to the valve tend to harden with age and let coolant into the electrical part of the actuator.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Today I tore my water valve apart and what a PAIN THE THE A$$ to get to. I have a 96 328i and that thing is hidden. I highly recommend cleaning this valve if your taking the manifold off for any reason because with the manifold in place your going to tear your hands up trying to squeeze them into the space.
Anyway I cleaned the plungers and ran hot water through the valve to make sure it functioned. Holding the inlet side of the valve up to my kitchen faucet I got water to bubble out of the two outlets so it seemed to be working but I wanted to make sure I was not wasting my time and that the coils on this thing were still good so I checked them with my meter.
Hopefully this helps someone else out
All my heat works perfectly now!!!

 

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BMWCCA HPDE Instructor
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Awesome work. Thanks for posting back with your results! This will most certainly help someone else out in the future.
 

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Good work! I feel your pain! I had to replace my valve last year due to water intrusion into the coil area. Lots of pain and execration involved.......learned the execration word from another post on the forum:rofl:.
 
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