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I'm trying to diagnose a problem/feature with the heater in my Smart Car, and I'd like to get others input before taking it into the dealer for an inspection.

The temperature control really doesn't give any temperature variation unless I set it at full (the setting above 80.)

I read that the Smart cars have an electric heater which is activated when setting the level to MAX and that is working correctly. But, from 60-78 setting, theres really no difference and the air is always cool.

Has anyone else experienced this?

*note* I have two other new cars; The 2007 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited and a 2006 Pontiac Solstice. Both have fine settings for heater temperature.
 

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I can tell you that I had it at 70 one trip and definitely got warm air.

For the most part I just use the seat heaters, but that time I am certain of because I was so chilly and checking out the heater.
 

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We don't have any problems with our car heater. We put it on defrost at -18 below and it warm the car up within minutes. We turn it down once it got warm to 70- it it stay warm.
 

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Erik, what was the ambient temp when you tried this? I assume the heat sensor has to see some difference between that and the temp settings before it turns on the heat or A/C. :)
 

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Erik, what was the ambient temp when you tried this? I assume the heat sensor has to see some difference between that and the temp settings before it turns on the heat or A/C. :)
Outside temp was about 60 degress, but, inside the temp was probably around 70-75 deg from sitting in the sun. Pretty warm. But, even when starting and driving first thing in the morning, theres just not as much heat as expected.

Does the heater use climate control?
 

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Heater works as expected. Climate control is a misnomer, in my opinion, since it's just A/C with numbers painted on the temp. control switch.
 

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Yes, it's automatic temperature control, not a full on auto climate control. You must control fan speed, air flow direction and a/c on or off. The only part that is automated is the temperature regulator or thermostat. It will adjust the warm/cold air mixture to help maintain the target temperature. But that's it.
 

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It sounds like to me you may have a problem with it. On a morning with outside temp around 50 deg., when I move my temp selector to 70 it definitely puts out hot air and will cool to warm air as it warms the car up.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
It sounds like to me you may have a problem with it. On a morning with outside temp around 50 deg., when I move my temp selector to 70 it definitely puts out hot air and will cool to warm air as it warms the car up.
So I cruised over to the dealer and checked the heater operation of one of their demo cars. Sure enough the heater worked the same as my car does and probably all our cars do. The heater seems to be temperature controlled, (as mentioned) so if your car is already hot inside, setting the temperature to 80 will not make it any hotter.

The only information I found about the Smart Car's heater is -At the maximum setting, it uses a electronic heater- However, this was referencing the European Smart Car. I assume its the same for the USA/Canadian versions too since the notch above 80 produces Hot Air no matter what the temperature is inside the car. The owners manual cautions that you may indeed burn your unprotected skin from the heater at full operation so be careful. *chuckles*
 

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Were the engines hot at the time you tested them? Most car heaters really do not function until the engine heats up, one of the reason seat heaters are marvelous :)
 

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I read that the Smart cars have an electric heater which is activated when setting the level to MAX
Incorrect, Diesel smarts only.

It seems that smart are looking into a possible fault with the heater control system. I don't believe that the hot/cold mix flap is doing its job properly.
 

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Interesting. I did notice that it seemed like I could hear a small motor running when I would change the temperature setting and then it would stop, much like it was moving a flap. The other morning, it seemed like it was running continously, like it was having difficulty moving it, or couldn't find the spot it needed to be in. It finally stopped though.
 

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Incorrect, Diesel smarts only.
Hey give me -some- credit. I was somewhat correct since since I referenced the European Smart and the Diesel hasn't hit the USA just yet ;)

Regardless, I'll have it looked by the dealer during my 1st oil change which is due next week. My smart does blow warm-toasty air until the cabin is comfortable. Its just not the same as my 3 other cars.



Evilution, Where did you hear Smart is looking into the heater system, you have a link to a website or was this from conversation?
 

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Erikdfier.....My 2009 Cabriolet has the exact same problem you are describing. With the temp lever at the very top......hot, hot air....go one click below and it blows colder air. Not a real variance in temp control. Either hot or cool!!
 
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