Vents on 2008 Ford Focus

I recently had my Focus in the shop for some body work due to hail damage. After I got the car back, the air vents on the dashboard and the defogger would not blow air. Only the lower vents would blow air, regardless of which setting I had the vent selector on. (Even if I had the selector to defogger or dashboard vents only, the vents by my feet blew out air). The guy who runs the body shop said that wouldn’t be related to anything they did on the car. Anyone know what might be causing this? It’s no longer under warranty, so I want to know if there’s an easy at-home fix. (Also, when I got the car back, the dashboard clock and the preset radio stations had been reset. Don’t know if this might be related to the problem with the vents)

Someone at the body shop accidentally disconnected one of the air ducts. Take the car back to them and insist they make it right. Don’t take “no” for an answer (politely). It was working when you brought it to them, and now it doesn’t work, and they are trying to weasel their way out of their mistake.

Rather than an air duct being disconnected, I think it is more likely that a vacuum hose running to one or more of the HVAC servo-motors has become disconnected. In any event, you should take it back to the body shop.

Your air distribution blend door is not working. This is a device that controls which of three ducts the air from the fan will go down. In your car it is electrically controlled (I think). Either they damaged or disconnected it, or the switch is broken, or there is a blown fuse. The blend door is behind the dashboard, you have to take center console apart to get to it.

I suppose it could have failed coincidentally, but that seems unlikely. If they did not take apart the dashboard (why would they for hail damage) then maybe the motor was damaged when they disconnected and reconnected the battery, which they obviously did.

strongdreams is using good common sense and logic. This is hail damage and the need to access or R&I the instrument panel is not needed at all. Although why would the battery be disconnected? There also would be no reason for this. But is is possible that the battery was drained dead from having a door opened to long which could happen from someone doing PDR (paintless dent repair) work. Did this affect the HVAC system???

Well, I’m trying to figure out the possibilities here. Clearly the battery was disconnected, or it ran down and they jumped it. (You should ask about this, by the way, and see if they give you a straight answer.) There’s no reason to disconnect the battery if all they were doing is body work. They certainly would not be taking out the radio and the center console, which is what you have to do to get at the blend door motor. Even if they had the hood up, they would be on the wrong side of the firewall to mess up the blower and duct work.

On the other hand, if this Focus has electronic climate control, there is a computer involved. Could the computer have been fried if they jumped the battery wrong? Or maybe they were working inside the cabin for some reason that they don’t want to tell you. (Such as, they accidentally got some kind of solvent or contaminant inside the vents and had to clean it out.)

So maybe it really is just a coincidence. Or maybe something really strange happened. If this does have computerized climate control, you might have to go to the dealer to get it diagnosed. Good luck.