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Discussion Starter #1
I heard that the demo at HRM also has this problem and I think I've seen a few random posts about this. Yes, the AC used to blow real nice and cold. Today on the way back from an amusement park, the car first blew very cold air. I had the fan setting on 3. After a while, I noticed that the flow of air was dramatically reduced and the air wasn't very cold. It wasn't hot...kinda almost room temp. I stopped to get gas and when I fired it back up, the air blew strong and cold. After a while, it did the same thing :confused:

Any ideas? Yes, the blue light was on, etc. No adjustment of recirc button, vent control (up or down) or anything seemed to work. I just left it off for a while and when I got near home, I tried it again and it blew strong and cold again.....strange....
 

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I had a Honda that used to do this in very humid weather on long trips.

Something in the AC system gets iced up, and it no longer gets cold anymore. Turning the system off for a minute (to let the ice melt) and then turning it back on made it work again.

ed
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Very interesting...makes sense...but why would the fan blow slower? Or maybe I'm imagining things as I sat there sweating up a storm. Or maybe the heat exchanger element had all the passages frozen; thus, blocking the air?

EdHahn said:
Something in the AC system gets iced up, and it no longer gets cold anymore. Turning the system off for a minute (to let the ice melt) and then turning it back on made it work again.
 

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Mine does blow slower when it happens. When the exchanger ices up, I assume it blocks the air?
 

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Just make sure you avoid low temp and low fan settings at the same time. The higher the fan setting the lower you can set the temp.

I don't have my Elise yet but I've seen this before in many cars.
 

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Yep just don't use the AC when it's HOT and Humid outside and it will be fine :rolleyes: ...

My car and I bet every Elise is gonna suffer this problem. The AC sucks in this car because it stops working when you really need it the most. It's a design flaw somewhere in the system for sure.
 

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All Elises do that. That's why in HK some of us have had extra condensors and fans added. It's nothing to do with freezing. Basically the heatsoak from the radiator starts to seep into the aircon pipes and the fan unit. The heater matrix also affects the aircon. I've had the heater matrix removed so don't have this problem anymore. If you want consistently good aircon in an Elise, you'll have to get it modified.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
My first guess was the heat from the radiators were impacting the heat exchanger. Putting my hand outside the window, I could feel tons of heat radiating outwards while at speed. After I turned the AC off for a while I noticed the intense heat radiating out was lessoned...

What is a heater matrix?
 

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The heater matrix is a really small radiator in a black box at the front of the car. It's what provides hot air for your air vents in winter. It's got it's own set of pipes running to the engine. This thing gets super hot and soaks even more heat into the rest of the "tub". When you switch your aircon on, at least one of the fans come on to cool the condensor. This is not nearly enough. Obviously when you're moving along at speed this is not a problem but then the heatsoak becomes the problem. The footwell of the car gets really hot because of all the hot air blowing against it. To combat this, you';d have to have extra powerful aircon. My car has a 2nd aircon condensor and 2 extra fans. This provides twice as much cooling so I get much better airflow. Also, all the pipes are wrapped in heat reflecant material. I've removed the heater matrix and all the piping has been shutoff. Of course, I live in a warm climate so don't need heating.

Hope this helps.
 

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The bad news: I've really NEEDED the air once, and it wasn't there.

The good news: I RARELY need the air. I have bigger fish to fry...
 

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I didnt read all the responses. Just wanted to say that my car does the EXACT same thing as what you described. I just figured the condensor froze up or something. I turned it off for a bit and turned it back on and it was still poopy so I just left it off and rolled down the windows. Later that afternoon I got back in and the air was fine, cold and blowing strong.

The worst part of it was that I was going to the concours show and wanted to be halfway "fresh" when I got there. As it worked out I was a hot sweaty mess. :(
 

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OneFastLotus said:
As it worked out I was a hot sweaty mess. :(
You blame the Elise for making you all 'hot and bothered' :D
 

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When I drove the demo car at Dimmitt. The air was not working. They told me it had not worked for a few days. It just blew out very hot air.
 

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not the highest priority in the UK. i assume his heater matrix is what the US-ites call a heater core. perhaps there is a way to insulate it and divert the air from it to the vents? a bit of heat insulation would be cheap and light weight. are you folks running the a/c with the top off when this happens? may be combination of icing and heat loading
 

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WOW,

This is NOT good news especially for those folks who live in warm climates most of the year Cali, Arizona, & Florida to name a few. I feel sorry for you guys. This is really unexcusable for a car that cost well over 40K. My Aunts '97 Ford Tauras blows ice cold air and she never once had the AC serviced:confused:

Mitch
 

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i'm betting this is one of those things lotus will address as time goes on. they likely have not had adequate info on this little hot climate issue. someone with their ear should make sure they know about it. it seems like something their engineers can solve for all us poor long term wait listers. hell, i might even feel better about the msrp increases if they do!
 

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They're already looking into it. As silver bullet and I first noticed this problem on both our cars coming back from picking his up.

Chris
 

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You're actually better of mounting a small fan at you feet and plugging it into the cigar lighter. Or, find out where you can get dry ice.... Seriously though, there is a way to upgrade the aircon to a very good standard suitable even for Bangkok. If you're interested, the parts and instructions can be shipped to the US, I think. It's fairly expensive to do but well worth it if you live in a hot humid climate like I do.
 
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