Third dead heater/ac control panel


Veteran Member
Jan 1, 2000
MD in my wood shop
B4V GLX 1996; sold the Jetta PD Wagon 2004
On my 96 Passat--

Two died from fried blower motor switches
. This one died by a broken vent selector knob
. Anyone else had problems with these silly contraptions?
What's the cheapest source for new units? Dealer wants $240
, IMPEX about $140
, others? Anyone have a good used unit laying around?


Steve Addy

Top Post Dawg
Aug 7, 2002
97 Mk3
try hunting around on (used parts) or go to VWVortex and put a feeler out on the classified section for B4 cars. You can get one for less that what you're talking now I'm sure.

My 94 Golf had no low speed fan, which meant that I had to replace the complete cluster...a real pain for just one fan setting. PS, if you buy a used one replace any bulbs in there before you install it, once it's in you'll ***** up a storm if you have to pull it to replace a burnt bulb.

good luck
steve a

[ December 12, 2002, 22:29: Message edited by: Steve Addy ]


Top Post Dawg
Feb 22, 1999
Ruislip, Middlesex, UK
Peugeot 806, 607

This is a very common problem on B3 Passats. I hadn't realised that B4s were starting to suffer too....

The problem is that the current for the blower motor actually goes right through the switch contacts. In other words there is about 15 or 20 amps going through a poor little sliding bit of copper.

I assumed that they beefed it up a bit on the B4s as the B3 switch melts so often.

The permanent solution is to make the switch power up a relay (one for each speed). The current for the blower motor then goes through the relay rather than through the switch.

I haven't gotten around to doing this on mine but it looks as though I will have to find the time now. Its no good doing it after the switch has already melted...

[ December 13, 2002, 03:14: Message edited by: christi ]