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2016 Forester XT
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446 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
In response to the thread: http://www.subaruforester.org/vbulletin/f77/air-conditioning-always-2010-forester-82090/, I have made this guide to show how to disable the feature that turns the air conditioner on, and fresh air vents when you turn the control knob to either of the window defrost settings.

This should work for a 2009+ Forester.

Once disabled, you can always manually enable the A/C and outside vent to accelerate defrosting. I live in Texas, so I need this feature about three out of the year.

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1: Remove the glovebox.
-Open the glovebox
-Remove contents
-Remove the small damper arm at the right
-Pry in the top edges until the stops allow you to open the box fully
-The box will simply pull away after that.



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2: Remove the small side panel at the far right of the dash.
-This is done by simply prying it away, or pushing from the back once you have the glove box removed.



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3: Remove the gauge surround.
-This just pulls away



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4: Disconnect the Vent control cable.
-This is located to the left of the A/C controls, behind the steering column.
-Take care NOT to bend the wire past the yellow plastic as it will make changing the vent position difficult.
-There is a small tab holding the loop onto the white plastic arm
-There is a spring tab holding the yellow plastic cable surround in place.



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5: Remove the temperature control cable.
-This is located on the right hand side of the A/C control,s behind the glovebox.



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6: Carefully Remove the silver trim.
-Remove the single screw at the far right
-Starting from the right carefully pull the plastic away from the dash, there are many snaps to deal with on this piece.
-I also removed the radio trim so I didn't scratch it.



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7: Disconnect the A/C control wires.



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8: Turn the A/C controls over and look at the back/bottom
-Here's your problem. A small control arm that presses on a button when you turn the knob to the to defrost.



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9: Remove the small control arm.
-Simply push the two small tabs together and lift.



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10: Flip the control arm over, and re-attach.
-This way you don't loose it if you ever want to reverse this modification.
-Then put everything back together the way you found it.

 

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2006 Forester XT
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658 Posts
Although the arm-flip is effective, I'd install a small switch in the wire, giving you on/off capability - I wouldn't want to do all that again just to restore that function.....

S
 

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2016 Forester XT
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446 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
You would have to cut and solder into the PCB the switch is attached to, but not a terrible idea. I have a custom car PC installed, when I sell the car (not that I plan to anytime soon) I will have plenty of mods to reverse.

Last time I sold a modded car it only took 30 minutes to convert it back to stock...granted if you ever looked behind the dash of that car there were a lot of cut wires that no nowhere. :D
 

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130 Posts
Done without a hitch !!:Banane08::Banane08:

My $0.02 is:

1) As has been noted before in other posts, the silver trim piece scratches easily, so care is needed when working with this piece.

2) I did not remove the wire connections. After removing the vent and temp control cables I was able to pull the assembly out far enough to get the the arm. It's on the bottom of the assembly. (no big deal, just an observation).

So far I have added heated mirrors, blue floor lights, and now disabled the auto A/C.

The only mod left on my list is to mod the 4eat into a 5 or 6 eat :biggrin::biggrin:
 

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2010 X-Premium M/T
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91 Posts
Thank you, thank you, thank you for this post ... ! Mod will be underway shortly!
:woohoo::woohoo:
 

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2015 Forester 2.5i CVT
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771 Posts
YES! THANK YOU! I hate automatic crap like this and can't wait to do this mod to my MY10 2.5X! :)

Would like to paint or something that dang silver trim strip cause it causes many reflections in the side windows especially the passenger side when trying to use the sideview mirror. Flat black would be nice anybody done something like this?
 

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2015 Forester 2.5i CVT
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771 Posts
Anybody manage to do this with only removing the center console peice? Is there enough slack to swap the little plastic lever around...not like I really need to see it if I can feel it to swap it around?
 

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2015 Forester 2.5i CVT
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771 Posts
Yes, of course. What I meant is there enough slack in the cables that the console can be removed and pulled out just far enough to get a hand behind it, pull the piece off and snap it back on? Then just reinstall the console and yer done.
 

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2015 Forester 2.5i CVT
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771 Posts
Did this mod tonight and removed that little plastic piece permanently, it's not going back in! Best mod ever! Thanks much to the OP!!! :Banane29::Banane29::Banane29: Nexxt I'm going to unsolder the beeper for the door open. Tried to find it tonight after this mod, but couldn't remember where it's at exactly. Going to that thread now. :)

BTW, very well thought out car, it's like a giant snap together model with few fasteners and so far they are almost all the same fastener. Very smart design here.
 

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2016 Forester XT
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446 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Not to go off topic..but hey its my topic...

Taking apart the Forester I am amazed at the design and build quality compared to previous cars I had owned. (Mazda and Chrysler)

For sound deadening Mazda uses pieces yellow of hard expanded foam that is literally hot-glued onto the door. This off course falls off in time and rattles around. (The Forster uses what looks more like carpet under-padding)
Also every panel had about three different retainer types to keep track of.

My Chrysler had zero rust protection on inside surfaces, I have photos of the safety bars and insides of door panels that are red with rust...when the car was only 8 months old. It also used lots of different screws and required taking out the entire center console to get to anything except the radio.

Also FYI, if you ever loose some of your car fasteners. Try Lowes. At least my local lowes sells some of the plastic snap on retainers.
 

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2015 Forester 2.5i CVT
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771 Posts
ZapWizard, thanks I did break a small piece off one of the little yellow clips that holds the instrument cluster cover on. It's not affecting the functionality of the clip, but will prolly break easier next time I take it apart. Good to pick up a few spare of those clips.
 

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2011 Forester
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1 Posts
Harness Access?

Awesome fix. Thanks.

Has anyone looked at where the switch wires show up in wiring harness land? Perhaps they are accessible someplace. If so, then a simple snip would work too, provided we know the color codes. This is a more permanent solution, but avoids the risk of breaking fastener tabs, bending cables, scratching bezels, etc.

I personally would prefer a five-minute quick fix to an afternoon of trying not to break stuff. But I don't have the schematics.

Thanks for the fix again... its a perfect and elegant fix.

Regards,

mjj50
 

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2010 Forester Touring 4 speed Automatic
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43 Posts
Thanks ZapWizard for another amazing mod that I did last week. Love it!:woohoo:

Was just a little harder under the driver side since I had installed the oem car starter and had less space for my big hands to reah the vent cable.
 
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