Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Defroster and heater blows cold air while idling - 2005 Ford Escape

asked by on

A few weeks ago I put my car in the shop for a few reasons. My defoster and heater only works when I am driving. If I slow down or if Im idiled the heat/defroster starts blowing cool air. I needed a new serpintine belt. Was having the high pitched squeal as well as a fast jingle-bell noise(my 5 yr old sons description:-). Had an oil leak, bad cv joint, and a bad gasket. To top it all off theres a weird gurgling, slurping liquid sound that no one has been able to diagnose for me for 2 years. After a week and $1000 I got my car back with the same fast jingle-bell noise (high pitched squealing is gone), heater/defroster still blowing cold air when idiled and the weird slurping of liquid sound. I would prefer to fix these problems myself but need some guidance on what the problem is. When it comes to my defroster/heater problem; I have checked the heater core but dont believe that is the issue. Any advice will be greatly appreciated. Thank you!

My car has 130000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hi there - the lack of heat from your HVAC system could be a couple of things: bad thermostat, heater control valve, or air in the cooling system. If the engine come up to proper temperature and stays there (i.e. center of the temp gauge), the thermostat is fine. If temp on the gauge stays low, the thermostat needs to be replaced. The gurgling sound you are hearing indicates that there is still air in the coolant system, which needs to be bled - hot air in the heater core doesn’t provide heat, only hot coolant will. The cooling system need to be thoroughly bled. Once these are done - if still no heat - check the heater control valve (and heater controls on the dash) to be sure the valve is opening, and allowing hot coolant into the heater core. For help in getting to the problem quickly, I would recommend an inspection of the heater system by a mobile, professional mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, who will come to your location, diagnose this problem, give you an accurate assessment of damage and cost estimate for repairs. The squeal you hear could be a loose serpentine belt, worn idler pulley or alternator bearing, and the "jingle" noise could be a loose belt tensioner.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: How should I have my vehicle towed?

While it’s hoped that you never need to have your vehicle towed, it’s definitely a possibility. Knowing the right and wrong way to do it can help prevent serious damage. Here’s what you should know: 2WD: If your vehicle is...

Q: My car's thermostat gauge is not functioning right.

The temperature gauge may not go up to operating temperature if your engine thermostat is stuck in the open position. If the thermostat is stuck open your engine may never get up to normal operating temperature and this will cause...

Q: Window motor not working

If power is getting the motor but the window doesn't raise, suspect a problem with the regulator. When the window switch is pressed, power is sent to a DC motor. The motor is attached to a scissor-type device called the...

Related articles

How Do Power Car Windows Increase Passenger Safety?
Power windows are responsible for approximately 2,000 emergency room visits every year. When a power window closes, it exerts enough force to bruise or break bones, crush fingers, or restrict an airway. Though...
How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.