Does the recirculation button do much? - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
 
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 03:50 AM Thread Starter
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Does the recirculation button do much?

My 2005 Elise S2 is fitted with aircon.

The aircon is working fine, no problems with it at all. I never really bothered with the recirculation button but I tried it yesterday and it does not seem to actually do very much.
The button lights up and you can hear the click of a relay behind the dash, but how would I know if the feature was actually working?

Should I be able to hear a difference in the air flow? Or a change in temperature?

On my van (a Ford Connect) when you press the recirculation button there's a slight change in the sound of the heater, but nothing much else happens, except that eventually the windows start to steam up.
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 04:04 AM
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The recirculation button simply closed off the outside air entering though the two nose air intakes. IMPROVED A/C & HEATING SYSTEM
Michael
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 04:08 AM
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It depends on outside air temperature. If the outside air is at 100 plus, and recirculation is NOT on, the AC must cool 100 degree air down to a livable temperature. If recirculation is on, it uses the already cooler air in the cabin for the intake of the AC which makes the cabin temperature a bit lower. All bets are off if you have windows open (you are back to cooling outside air again).
If the outside air is already cooler (such as 80 degrees), the benefit of recirculation is smaller.

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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 04:14 AM Thread Starter
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We never get temperatures of 100 here!

I will try introducing some smoke to the front air intakes to see if they turn off when you press the recirculation button.

But I guess if it's not working it won't matter too much here in the UK.

I do have the problem where after the car has warmed up you cannot get cold air through the heater, it's always warm even on the coldest setting.
But it becomes very cold when you turn on the A/C so at least that is working.
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 04:15 AM
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Open vents are nice for fresh air, but be ready to press that recirc button to close them if you get stuck behind a truck or bus.
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 04:22 AM
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A point of interest is that the cabin interior footwell recirculation air intake is always on, regardless of the operation of the recirculation switch.
Michael
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 09:32 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SirLotus View Post
A point of interest is that the cabin interior footwell recirculation air intake is always on, regardless of the operation of the recirculation switch.
Michael

Ah, that explains why the air going in to the footwell is always at a slightly different temperature to the air coming from the face level vents!

I wondered why that was the case.
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 09:52 AM
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Ah, that explains why the air going in to the footwell is always at a slightly different temperature to the air coming from the face level vents!

I wondered why that was the case.
I really don't think that is anything to do with it.
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 12:46 PM Thread Starter
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Well if you say the footwell air is always recirculated it is going to come out at cabin temperature, whereas the air coming through the face level vents will be from the outside of the car....so it is likely to be st a different temperature.
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 01:29 PM
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Well if you say the footwell air is always recirculated it is going to come out at cabin temperature, whereas the air coming through the face level vents will be from the outside of the car....so it is likely to be st a different temperature.
No, you misunderstand.The air into the system goes through the cooling (or heating) system, irrespective of where it originates from. The air INTO the system comes from either, outside air (nose intakes) or recirculated cabin air (footwell intake). Where it comes out from, goes though the cooling (or heating) system and discharges through the dash, face level vents or foot level vents. It will always result in the same temperature at either discharge vent. Just because the air originates at the recirculation footwell intake does not mean the temperature at the floor or dash discharge will be different.
Michael
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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 11:32 PM Thread Starter
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Oh, OK.

Yes you are correct I misunderstood your original post. So the air is heated/cooled AFTER it is drawn into the system (whether from the cabin or outside) and then sent back into the car.
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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-18-2012, 03:23 AM
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Oh, OK.

Yes you are correct I misunderstood your original post. So the air is heated/cooled AFTER it is drawn into the system (whether from the cabin or outside) and then sent back into the car.
Exactly. Air is always being drawn into the system from the footwell recirculation intake. When the recirculation button is activated it closes a flap valve that closes off outside air from the two nose intakes.
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-18-2012, 11:23 AM Thread Starter
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Well that proves my recirculation function is not working then, as even with the button pressed it still draws in air from the front inlets.

I tested it with a smoke machine.

But I never used it anyway, so I will wait until I have to take off the front clam for something else before I repair it.
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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-18-2012, 11:40 AM
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Originally Posted by zebraman View Post
Well that proves my recirculation function is not working then, as even with the button pressed it still draws in air from the front inlets.

I tested it with a smoke machine.

But I never used it anyway, so I will wait until I have to take off the front clam for something else before I repair it.
These are the nose intake flapper valves. BTW, they could be operating, but leaking, for which they are known.
Michael
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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-20-2012, 01:52 PM Thread Starter
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So there's no way to access the recirculation motor unless the front clam and heater box are removed?
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post #16 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-21-2012, 02:28 AM
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So there's no way to access the recirculation motor unless the front clam and heater box are removed?
Correct.
Michael
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post #17 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-21-2012, 02:00 PM Thread Starter
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I don't think failure of the "recirculation" function matters here in the UK.

But I can see it would be an issue in very hot climate such as in the USA where you might want to get maximum cooling from the aircon by taking air from the cabin.

Eventually I guess I will get radiator/aircon/resistor pack failure (none of these yet!) and then I will repair it while the car is dismantled.
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