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excal8 04-24-2013 04:51 PM

Help! Climate Control switch problem
First post here after being a lurker/learner for years. I have a 2000 Jeep Wrangler Sport 4.0L 6 cyl that I bought brand new in 1999 and have loved since. I appreciate all of your patience and any help you can provide me as this is clearly the best forum for Jeep Owners on the web.

About 8 months ago, I replaced my blower resistor and my blower control switch and the AC has worked great ever since after going without for a couple years. I did the whole job for under $100 thanks to the knowledge of this site. This morning, however my 3rd knob on the panel quit moving and got stuck in one position. The selector still moves but it does not engage to the new setting. I have pulled off the plastic switch handle off and it is not broken and actually still turns the metal post. Thankfully it is stuck on air conditioning since I work in Arizona and have to often wear suits to work.

I have done some preliminary research and made some calls to a dealer(who I will never use) and an O'Reilly's and been told that unlike the blower control switch(the knob on the left that controls fan speed) that when the climate control switch(the one that selects between AC, Fan and Defrost and various chest or feet vents on the far right) goes bad that I have to buy a whole new AC Control unit/head or Part #55037473AB. This part runs from $90-$150 and would include all 3 switches including the blower control(fan speed) switch I just replaced.

I have read some posts on here about older models of my vehicle losing connections with their Vacuum tubes but I dont see any in my model. My fan and heat/cold switch still work fine and I am in no hurry since I wont want need to turn it off the AC setting the 3rd knob is stuck on til at least October in Phoenix. There are no leaks in the AC unit and I am quite certain that it is just that 3rd knob.

Anyone got any ideas or knowledge that may be useful to me before I begrudgingly fork over the money for an entire assembly with 3 switches when only one of mine is bad??? I know how to get the panel off after replacing the fan switch earlier so that wont be a problem.

RUBI 4 MY MRS 04-24-2013 07:10 PM

This is probably what you need.
Mode switchJeep Wrangler TJ 99-04 Heater/AC Vacuum Switch Mopar

Jeep Wrangler TJ 99-04 Heater/AC Vacuum Switch Mopar : : Automotive

Knob also available if needed.

excal8 04-24-2013 08:13 PM

Will try it
Thanks Rubi. I will spend the $20(with shipping) and give it a try before I spend the $100 on a whole new face plate. I will order today and report back after I pop it in. I assume I just pop the control panel open like I did when I replaced my blower switch and look for the part back there to replace it???

SpoiledRotten 04-25-2013 10:31 AM

A Climate Control Switch... .sounds like something Al Gore would try to sell. :)

excal8 04-30-2013 04:51 AM

Problem Solved!
Ordered that part and put it in and everything works. Amazing that O'Reilly or the dealer did not have that part # and wanted to sell me the entire unit for over $100 instead of the $20 I paid in total with S&H. Thanks again Rubi!

jhunter4653 06-04-2015 09:15 AM


Originally Posted by excal8 (Post 3700267)
Ordered that part and put it in and everything works. Amazing that O'Reilly or the dealer did not have that part # and wanted to sell me the entire unit for over $100 instead of the $20 I paid in total with S&H. Thanks again Rubi!

Hey excal, I have same problem, knob actually spins all the way around with no change...Any directions on how you made the repair...I have the part on the way.
Thx JH

excal8 06-05-2015 08:29 AM

Replacing the Heater-Vacuum Switch
Hi Jhunter,
Your knob spins around because the Heater/AC Vacuum switch is pressurized. When it is broken or has lost pressurization it will spin around like that. You made the right call in ordering the part that Rubi had mentioned above(and pasted again below here) for $30 and you should be good. Jeep Wrangler TJ 99-04 Heater/AC Vacuum Switch Mopar: Automotive

You may or may not need the actual selector dial that turns but this is a $1 or $2 part and can be replaced later without popping the whole plastic cover to that area off.

First, make sure you use a rag or cloth between some pliers when pulling off all of the selector knobs. Otherwise these selector dials scratch up real easy. To get to the heater vaccum switch there are a couple of clips that hold the plastic face plate that covers the radio area and climate control area that pop off when applying pressure. These are right below the windshield and just in front of the long vent that covers this area(where the air flows out when the defroster is on). When you gently wiggle the top of this plastic face plate and get it loose from the clips the whole plastic cover will tilt towards you just like a Big Blue US Mailbox door would open towards you when you pull the handle to drop some mail in to send off(most similar thing I could think off). After you get this off you can easily access and pull out the entire panel that has the switch you want to replace(the right one)and can pop the new switch in you bought. The whole job can easily be done in about 15 minutes. Hope this helps

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