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This is on a 2011 Touring

It took me some time to figure out where the AC Mode actuator was located on my 2011, so I thought I would share here.

Symptoms/Behavior: AC only blows out defrost and floor - unable to get air to come out middle front vents.
Mode selector has power and the icon on the dash changes when changing mode selection. AC works and blows cold. Temperature controls work. Rear air was not impacted and worked normally.

The AC mode selector actuator is accessed on the passenger side. If you look up under the dash on the passenger side you will see an actuator behind the center console, but this is for the passenger side temperature control air-mix. The one you need to address (AC Mode actuator) is located directly above the air-mix actuator (picture included shows both). You will need to take a few trim panels off to get to the mode actuator.

  1. Remove upper side panel to right of dash (pops out)
  2. Remove upper dash panel above shelf (the one with the passenger side vent) - Pops out. Start on right hand side.
  3. Remove the rubber shelf mat
  4. Remove the five screws in the shelf area (three on top. two on bottom) and remove shelf.
  5. Remove kick panel under the glove box. Pops out. Pull down the rear edge and then pull away. Be gentle.
  6. Remove glove box by removing the two 8mm bolts at the bottom. Access is from back. After bolts are removed, open glovebox and depress the sides. Slides right out.
  7. Remove the black duct closest to the dash. This is attached via two screws and one 10mm bolt. The upper screw closest to the dash is accessible via a small hole in the metal frame. There are two wiring harnesses attached to it in two places (not a plug - just routed). I detached one of them and then just rotated the duct out of the way still connected to the other harness. A picture of it hanging there is included so you know which duct it is. Hint - it's the only one that you have to use the access hole for (picture included as well).
You now have easy access to all three screws holding the mode actuator on.
Remove and replace actuator
Lube the channel that the pin rides in. Good idea to lube the air mix actuator while you are there as well (if you have passenger side temp control).

Reinstall parts in reverse order.

Note: Place a towel behind the center console in case you drop a screw. Makes finding and retrieval of dropped duct screw much easier.
Note: Access to upper left screw on actuator is somewhat restricted. This can be accessed with an offset screw driver or a socket with a swivel (the screw is both hex and Phillips so either will work).

TIP: Glue the upper duct screw to the screwdriver with a small dab of glue just before you reinstall it. Makes getting it back in much easier. The screw will become unglued once it is tightened and the driver can be removed. My magnetic screw driver didn't do the job on this screw. Glue worked great. Maybe smaller hands will make this easier.


Total time is about 1 to 1.5 hours if you have everything ready when you start. (unless you drop and lose the upper screw for the duct). :eek:

Tools needed:
  • Trim panel removal tool - just something thin and flat that will pop the panel out without scratching it. I didn't need anything but my hands.
  • Phillips Screw driver
  • L-shaped/offset Phillips screw driver for the upper left actuator screw. Or 1/4" drive socket with swivel and extension ( not sure what size it was - 6mm?.
  • 8mm socket for glove box
  • 10 mm box-end for lower duct bolt
I uploaded photos with notes overlaid. Hopefully that helps someone.

Difficulty rating from 1 to 5. I give it a "2".

Scott W.
 

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Awesome Detail

Thanks for the post! Saw a few posts online and guys speculated on what needed to be replaced. The fix is definitely the vent actuator on the upper passenger side dash. Ordered the OEM part from Honda. Instructions worked great. The repair took me longer since that actuator is buried up in the dash. Having 1/4 drive socket, swivels, and multi extensions are a must.
 

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This actuator is what causes the annoying clicking sound on start up, right? Goes away in ten or so seconds?
 

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Mix motors can also cause a clicking or scratching sound. You are better off removing panels so you can observe the motors directly and then have someone else start the car so you can pinpoint the exact source of the sound.
 

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I know this is old but if anyone who has used this could comment on whether that had any issues similar to mine I would greatly appreciate it.
I followed the instructions above and they were good. However, as soon as I replace the actuator (just plug it in not actually install with screws) the pilot HVAC goes to full blower and the display screen goes blank. I cannot do anything to the hvac; no controls have any affect.
I remove the replacement unit and plug the old oem back in and all is well, although I am still stuck on dash vents only as before the fix.
 
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