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Getting poor heat from car

I have a 2011 honda accord with 13,000 miles on it and I have been getting poor heat out of it, it takes at least 10 minutes for the heat to come on and when it does it’s not very strong. I changed the cabin air filter which helped a little but not much. I drove in a friends 2005 honda accord the other day and the heat came on almost as soon as the car started and was very strong. They said maybe when I bought the car new they didn’t unpack the packing materials out of the heating system. Is that a possibility? What else can I do?

If this is a recent problem check the cooling fluid level first. If the air flow out of the vents is good then it could be as simple as the thermostat stuck open. Who ever said they might not have unpacked the shipping material- don’t talk to them anymore.

I had the same problem last winter.

As VOLVO V70 suggests,check the cooling fluid level first ,in the overflow tank and in the (engine cool) radiator. And is there good air flow through the heater/defroster ducts??

Does the car have a temperature gauge and does it reach normal (middle) within a few minutes of driving?

On my Honda (albeit 1999) when the engine is running and I move the heater control from Cold to Hot, a valve on the engine side of the firewall opens and closes via a small lever. Look on the firewall near its midpoint. Two black hoses attach there. The valve is right there, or somewhere along one of the hoses.

Some cars don’t have a valve to control the flow of hot coolant through the heater core, but have full flow through the heater core all the time. Doors in the air ductwork open and close, using engine vacuum or electric servomotors, to cause more or less air to flow through the hot heater core.

Where does the dash temp gauge needle rest once the car is warmed up? After about 10 minutes of driving. A little over mid-way? Or less than that?

I don’t get heat until the temp gauge is about a quarter of the way up which is after about 10 minutes of driving.

Is this car new to you?
If the coolant is where it should be, and the temperature gage is operating normally (see above posts), and this car is new to you, I’d be inclined to say it’s operating normally. In the weather we’ve been having recently, my own car takes about 10 minutes before the thermostat opens up and I start getting heat. It’s been below freezing here.

I went looking to see if yours had a valve as described in shanonia’s post, but was unable to make out the exploded view drawing well enough. I suspect it does, simply because every effort is made in modern cars to allow the engine to reach operating temperature as quickly as possible for the purpose of reducing emissions. I’ve attached a link to the exploded view drawing; perhaps someone more familiar with the heating systems on Hondas can identify the valve.

I have a 2005 Accord EX V6 with climate control. It takes a few minutes for the blower to start running. I believe that the climate control system measures temperature and when it is hot enough, it starts the blower motor. If you have the 2011 version of this system, the system may be performing as designed. Use a timer to measure the time between when you start the car and when the blower motor starts. If it really is ten minutes, then something may well be wrong with the climate control system.

I see 2 air mix motors. So I assume core is always hot. Does vent temp feel the same on both sides of car?

On my Corolla the dash coolant temp gauge is a little over midway up the scale after 10 minutes, where it pretty much stays put. 1/4 of the way up after 10 minutes for OP’s car, I’d guess besides the above ideas, a faulty thermostat may be in play here too.

Cavell mentions an important piece of information. I dont know how many types of systems for heat are in cars n trucks…but there are more than one method to get heat into the cabin. I have a long history with Hondas…and Hondas of yesteryear (96-02) usually have a valve that is opened and closed with the temp knob…when u want cold…it shuts hot coolant flow from the heater core…the opposite when you need heat.

When you go from Having nice HOT air from the vents…down to lukewarm. The first thing to do is check your coolant level…the next is to burp the air from the system if you had to add coolant…this burping purges the air and allows the entire system to be full of liquid coolant as it is supposed to be. Air pockets will affect the heater core. A non functioning Valve for the core will also screw you up (if the vehicle has a valve in your year accord) Sometimes the valve control is electrically operated (more common nowadays) and the valve motor might not be working…

As Cavell mentioned…he said he saw evidence that your heater core has no flow valve…but instead has full hot coolant flow running thru it all the time…when this is the case…the car controls the level of hot air you feel in the cabin by routing airflow thru the core…or restricting airflow. So…these are the ways among others…that you can suddenly lose that hot air from your heater. Depending upon the system you have…begets the troubleshooting method.

Me on the other hand…I need a new core…my GTi had a coolant system full of straight WATER for years before I got it…which deposited rust and God knows what else in my heater core…and basically clogged it internally…my heat is lukewarm. NOT FUN in winter here. In fact today…I am going to pump CLR solution thru my core…to try and open up the passages internally…it will either work… Not work…or destroy my core and make it leak… Sound fun? The entire dash needs to be removed to access the core… Oh the fun we have working on cars. Gotta love it.

Find out how your system controls the heat…your solution may be as simple as a fused motor not moving a blend door… to the motor or gearbox itself… But I bet once you know the system type…the solution will not be very hard to execute. Good luck and let us know. I may look up the type of system you have and narrow it down for you…AFTER I get nice hot hot Heat meself… Wouldnt be fair otherwise…Savvy ? LOL