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2006 PT Cruiser Issues

Hey, everyone. Long time listener, first time calle- er, writer.

I have a PT Cruiser that, despite my constantly describing it as a “massive mistake to buy” (something every mechanic I’ve talked to has wildly agreed with) it’s been a pretty reliable car over the past ten years. It has some maintenance issues (needing new shocks, for one thing) but there are two things happening with it that have me stumped and I don’t like going to the mechanic without an idea of what the problem is so they don’t spend four hours diagnosing it.

Problem one: I can’t turn the knob to change how air comes into the car. It seems permanently stuck on “feet and windshield” setting, and if I try turning it around to the other settings it either has no effect or the knob snaps back to where it was like I had a rubber band attached to it.

Problem two: Something screwy is going on with the wiring, I suspect. The cruise control and rear electric release for the hatch both stopped working on the exact same day. I’ve had this happen before, and after a repair that involved replacing the battery and the cables that help charge the battery (one was fried so the battery wasn’t charging at all), both features suddenly came back. Now they’re gone again.

Any thoughts people have would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

The HVAC mode control is cable operated, the cable is probably bent on one end, that is why the control knob springs back. Replacing the HVAC control cable should take about an hour.

And for the second problem, have you checked fuses? Sometimes completely unrelated systems will be on the same fuse. I’ve seen one fuse kill the radio, the cigarette lighter, and the horn, for instance.