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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Rear window defroster die?

Here is the progression of this ailment:
1. Sometimes you have to push the defrost button a second time to get it to work.
2. You have to push the [email protected]*n buttom repeatedly, but you finally get it to work.
3. You have to push real hard, and sort-of to the left, and you can get it to work - sometimes.
4. No matter what you do, the defroster refuses to work.

There is no need to pay a bunch of money for an expensive diagnosis. IMO, Nissan cheaped out and used junk components and poor assembly techniques to manufacture a sub-par A/C Controller assembly. Because of a cheap push button switch that is soldered into a circuit board assembly, a new controller will be required. This new controller is the better part of $300, and figure on a couple hours labor. This means you better have an extra $500 laying around, because of a cheap component that probably cost less than a buck.

The controller on my 2008 is, I suspect, an older model. The catalog part number shows an older number that has been superseded by a newer number. We can only hope that the newer number has better components. A very visible difference between my old one and my "new" one (more on that later), is the new one has some matching "orange colored" graphics to encourage you to keep the "Intake Air Selector" on "fresh" when using the defroster.

I just finished this repair today. First, the problem is a switch that is soldered into a circuit board on the back of the A/C Controller Assembly. There is no practical way to repair this switch nor swap out any sub-assembly. The entire controller (which consists of the 3 rotary knobs and the 2 push-button switches) must be replaced. The switch fails in the same way a single button will quit working on a TV remote control. I purchased a used controller from a junkyard.

To swap out the controller involves taking off the top "Instrument Finisher E", the "Cluster Lid C", the "Audio Unit", the "Instrument Finisher D", then removing the "Intake Door Knob", followed by the "Controller Finisher", and finally the "Controller".

The hardest thing to figure out is the 3 control cables, and how to release them. Each cable housing goes into a "socket affair" that has 2 plastic spring-loaded "grippers". These have to be spread apart to allow the cable housings to be extracted. I had success using 2 different types of snap-ring pliers. They both expand a snap-ring when the grips are squeezed, and I needed both straight and right-angle pliers. The cable housings must be inserted completely on re-assembly, or the grippers will not do their job and the cable housing will slide back and forth. It may not be abundantly clear, but the ends of the plastic cable housings are "molded" and will only properly seat if the housings are rotated to 1 of 2 positions (there are flats on 2 sides that forms a bump that is gripped).

The other thing that gave me trouble was the big black electrical connector on the controller. The tab that must be pushed in to release the connector is on top, and almost impossible to depress with fat, stubby fingers. Persistence will get you through.

2 final thoughts: make sure you disconnect the battery cables (negative first please) or you will have an airbag error code when you are done (you have to disconnect the airbag warning light harness). Clearing this code is a PITA and involves considerable research to find the procedure. The second thought is, this procedure should not be performed around children, mothers, wives, and especially "church friends". Failure to heed this warning could result in the diminished perception of your character.



 

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Very informative post and I'm glad you were able to diagnose and take pics. Sorta have a howto going on as well. This unit seems to be used in the new juke base model too. Hopefully there isn't alot of failures. The rear defrost is crucial for safe driving where there is plenty of snow and ice.
 

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Mine shot craps too, but I just did a quick fix today.

Basically what I did was:

1) remove all the paneling as in: top panel, around the radio, then under the climate controls, then around the climate controls.

2) remove the 4 screws around the climate control, turned it slightly then pulled it about an inch away from the dash, wouldnt really go any further.

3) At this point you can see the main harness for climate controls. On the bottom of the harness there is a white wire(supposedly also at the BCM behind the glove box, but I didnt check)

4) I took a momentary switch, hooked one side to the white wire, and the other to ground. I hid the switch on the under side of the climate controls, basically above the drink holder where you cant see it.

When you now tap the momentary switch, the light now comes on, on the switch, and it works, and times out normally. My switch still doesnt work, but now it lights up, and the rear glass heats up, so its all good, and worked great on the way home from work.
 

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Mine shot craps too, but I just did a quick fix today.

Basically what I did was:

1) remove all the paneling as in: top panel, around the radio, then under the climate controls, then around the climate controls.

2) remove the 4 screws around the climate control, turned it slightly then pulled it about an inch away from the dash, wouldnt really go any further.

3) At this point you can see the main harness for climate controls. On the bottom of the harness there is a white wire(supposedly also at the BCM behind the glove box, but I didnt check)

4) I took a momentary switch, hooked one side to the white wire, and the other to ground. I hid the switch on the under side of the climate controls, basically above the drink holder where you cant see it.

When you now tap the momentary switch, the light now comes on, on the switch, and it works, and times out normally. My switch still doesnt work, but now it lights up, and the rear glass heats up, so its all good, and worked great on the way home from work.
Nice, sorry to bump up such an old thread but I am subscribing, I am going to do this probabally next weekend, has anyone else tried it? Is it still working out for you or have you made the actual repair yet?
 

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Rear window defroster not working

Hi,

I just got the same problem. I bought my Versa used, it's 2008, 41 k miles, so of course the warranty is expired.

How do you remove the panelling without breaking anything. And what is a momentary switch?
 

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Mine still works fine. Had to use it all winter.

I will add, depending on how your switch broke, this might not fix it.
 

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Hi,

I just got the same problem. I bought my Versa used, it's 2008, 41 k miles, so of course the warranty is expired.

How do you remove the panelling without breaking anything. And what is a momentary switch?
I have not removed the paneling yet, but there is a forum in the how to's on how to do it (or at least how to remove most of it, the rest is probabally pretty obvious once you start)

A momentary switch is a switch that only closes the circuit when you are pressing the button (so like a button rather than a switch)

Mine still works fine. Had to use it all winter.

I will add, depending on how your switch broke, this might not fix it.
Mine still works but it is like my button randomly decides to work sometimes, I'm guessing your trick is to trigger the relay directly? If this is what it does than it should work for me, I will find out soon.
 

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2007 Versa rear window defroster

My wife's Versa has the same problem discussed here. Failed at about 36k km. Also, at about 38k the heater fan speeds 3 and 4 stopped working, i.e., speeds 1 and 2 work, turn the control to 3 or 4 and nothing. I've contacted Nissan Canada about this. They have offered a 20% reduction in the cost of the repair. To me this is not good enough for a failure at such low mileage. I am going to talk to them again and propose a 50% discount which is not really a fair deal either but better than nothing. If they refuse I'm going to attempt to get the media involved. Failing that, I'm going to park the car outside the dealership where we bought it with a sign highlighting these problems.
Owning Toyotas in the past I guess I just got used to some standard of quality. To have a part this expensive fail at less than 40k (25 k miles) is not acceptable.
Stay tuned.
 

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Unless I missed it, is this issue happening to the sedans, hatchback, or both?
Mine is a 2007 Sedan and it happened exactly as described by Ferrofab in the first post. Thanx to him, I saved a bunch. My dealership wanted $100 for diagnosis, about $375 for the part and estimated 4 hours labour !!! I read this thread over and over; read another thread about radio removal so that I could find out how to remove the covers, radio etc. I wish I had photos to show; It took me less than 2.5 hours (I am no mechanic)...and yes my fingers are sore, but I didn't swear once :)

First I bought the control base (27510-ZW80D) online for $154+$20 (Shipping) snap pliers (1 straight, and one right-angled). Snap pliers were $4 each. I followed the installation instructions by Ferrofab. It was easier than I thought. I didn't remove the airbag cable. There is a clip to keep it connected while removing the panel. I also didn't disconnect the +ve battery terminal (It doesn't make sense to me, but I didn't anyway).

The Black cable behind the assembly took me more than 20 minutes to remove. There isn't enough room to put your fingers around and at the end of it all, your fingers will be sore. After that cable, everything was a piece of cake. Oh, I wasn't careful with the snap pliers and broke one of the snaping contacts to the cable (I wasn't even supposed to use the snap pliers there...all I needed to do was to push the cables in until it snaps in), so my controller is working with one cable snap right now. I finished my installation and tested it. It works great so far :). I will be more careful next time...hope there is no next time :)

After a 2.5hr job, I feel good and saved myself a bundle.
 

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I had the same Issue here is my solution

I just remplace the NO contact on the board by new one buyed at my local eletronic shop for 1 $

first of all you don't need to dismantel the whole white plastic stuff, just unsnap gently the circuit board ( you gonna save a bunch of time in reassembling when you have the circuit in hand, just unweld or reroute the contat by a simple NEW N\O Switch bouton Ask your local eletronic store they have a plenty of it after just reweld or ask someont else to do it for you IT works perfectly for me and it cost me 2h of labor (including shopping for the part) one NO contact at 1$ and some unwelding copper belt ( less thed 3$ if you don't have it) and a verry small amount of lead welding wire.

when you reaassamble take care of the small copper plate and balls from the fan intencity selector , if you do that the repair will be really cheap ;)

 

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This is an excellent thread. Several different repair procedures have been presented for us to use. This will save me some money.

The A/C button in mine is just about dead. Takes many pushes and hard pushes to sometimes get it come on. Major issue in the south. I will no doubt be coming back to this thread in the near future when I have to repair/replace this very poorly designed/constructed part. Shame on you, Nissan.
 

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Nissan versa ac switch problem - (fixed)

Thanks to ferrofab for instructions on the console parts and removal.

In my case my Versa AC switch quit working. The AC still would come on when defrost is selected but to shut it off i would have to hold the button in for a minute or two. Same thing to turn back on, though selecting airflow to defrost would immediately turn it back on.

The tactile switch was bad. Tested with a multimeter for continuity and it would never close. The rear defroster switch tested good. I desoldered the AC switch and replaced it with a 5mm tall switch from an old broken vcr though you could buy a switch from radio shack for 4 dollars. Part number 275-002. Update: the radioshack part number is a surface mount switch. The circuit board is a through hole design. You might get it to work with ingenuity or look at other supply houses for a through hole version. It should be a 5x5x5mm tactile switch.

Quite the process with those cables (be careful, the cheap plastic tabs can easily snap) but i was able to get it back together and now the switch works perfectly.

Thanks again to the posts here for valuable information.
 

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I am having a similar issue with my 2007 Nissan Versa S Hatchback, only both the rear defrost and the A/C button refuse to work. Is it all the same controller assembly?
 

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I finally pulled replaced my climate control unit and thought I would update this thread.

I disconnected the battery. Supposedly you don't have to if you don't unplug the airbag light, but I didn't want to take the chance of accidentally pulling it out when I removed the trim piece around the radio. If you're worried about losing your settings on the radio, it's a non-issue because you have to pull the radio out anyway.

The vent selector, temperature control and fresh/recirc slider are all mechanical connections. They have very stiff wires (almost like the wire used to tie up chain link fences) housed in plastic sheaths. The sheath is held stationary by the grippers mentioned in the first post, and the wire slides in and out depending on the position of the dial. Two of them come out on the left, one comes out on the right. You have to disconnect the two on the left first, because they block the third. This means it's impossible to pull the unit out of the dash until you're almost done.

Like the OP, I used snap ring pliers. I didn't have any, so I bought a set with interchangeable heads at Harbor Freight for $4. Another thing that will help immensely is a smartphone with a forward-facing camera. You can sit the phone inside the dash and watch what's going on from behind.

I agree the sheaths and grippers are the biggest pain. Here's a pic of my old unit. As you can see, I broke a couple of the grippers. It didn't bother me since I didn't care about saving it, but be aware they're kind of fragile if you plan on repairing instead of replacing.



Here it is still inside the dash. You're limited to working inside this space until the green and yellow sheaths and the two electrical plugs are disconnected. Then you can flip it over and access the last sheath from the front. I removed the knobs, but I found out you don't have to do that to pull the unit, with the exception of the little square knob on the fresh/recirc selector. Save it, because odds are the replacement part isn't going to have it. It just pulls straight off.



This is where you want to be:



Here's a close up of one of the grippers. When you open it, make sure you put your snap ring pliers where the green arrow is. If you try to open it from where the red arrow is pointing, you may break it. You have to open the grippers, then pull the sheath out from the side. It has enough play that it will come out. I held the gripper open with the snap ring pliers with one hand and pulled on the sheath with the other using a pair of needle nose pliers. The good news is they're a lot easier to get back in than they are to get out.



Here's a series of pics showing how to put the sheath back in. Connect the wire to the unit, then slide the sheath into the round holes on either side of the gripper. You will hear a click when the gripper seats properly.







I strongly suggest plugging in the electrical connections and testing the buttons on the replacement before going to the trouble of connecting the wires. Sure as there are little green apples, this is one job you only want to do one time.

A word about the lighting. If you want to change the color of the backlights, I would suggest doing it while the unit is out. You could probably do it without removing the climate control, but the bulbs can only go out from behind and it's really easy to drop them into the dash if you just take the front off.
 

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AC was what went on mine also. It started getting flaky on me around September, but the weather was mild so I didn't need to use AC or turn on the defroster until a few days ago. Came out to an icy windshield and turned on the defrost, then the AC wouldn't turn off. Works great now.

Hope the pictures I took help you out.
 

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Both A/C and the rear defrost fuses are in the IPDM.

Fuses 46 and 47 control the defrost:



Fuses 27 and 50 control the A/C. Couldn't find an image for this one, but it's on page 29 of this document:

AIR CONDITIONER MTC A PDF - edoqs

If the switch just refuses to work, I think the button is a much more likely culprit than the fuse, though. If it's the AC, you could try turning the vent selector to defrost like I did. The AC will go on whether or not your button works. Of course, you won't be able to turn it off again if the button doesn't work. On my V it even comes back on if I change the dial to another setting and turn the car off, so only do that test as final confirmation.
 
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