97 Escort LX Heater not working

Old 02-01-08, 01:45 PM
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97 Escort LX Heater not working

I have a 1997 Ford Escort LX. The heater/blower stopped working 2 days ago, (not ideal in Minnesota when the temp is -17F). It was working the day before just fine, then the next morning I tried to turn it on and nothing happened. When I turn the knobs on the dash I here a very faint hiss. I don't know if that's a motor changing the direction the air moves (ie dash to floor) or if it's a blown motor or what. The fuse/breaker under the dash didn't look like a normal fuse like the ones for the cigarette lighter nor like the bigger ones under the hood. It was more like a house hold breaker that if it were to be triggered there would be a red dot in the middle that would pop to indicate that it blew. The 'fuse' was still intact from what I could tell. The guy at AutoZone said I should wire directly from the battery to the fan to see if it' s the fan that is no good. I don't know how to do this safely. Please help... If the fan is ok please describe in detail the next steps I should take to get my heater up and running.

Thank you very much.
Old 02-02-08, 05:23 AM
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The hiss you hear is probably one of the vacuum-operated doors in the ducting; won't affect the fan motor not running. Afraid this may be a little tough without having to use a voltmeter to check for power. I confess I can't get a picture in my mind of the fuse/breaker you are describing. At any rate, you will need to check for power at the fuzebox and power at the motor. Also, in between is a resistor that controls the speed of the motor; it is often mounted right in the ducting to provide cooling (a resistor heats up in doing its job). These have been known to fail as well. From time to time I lose the blower on my wrecker and in order of likely failures it's usually (1) fuse, (2) blower motor, (3) resistor. Actually the resistor has never failed with 507,000 miles. Could also be the switch itself; again this takes work with a voltmeter or by swapping out parts with known good ones to track down.

Here's some additional help:



That item is listed as a "c.b." which would be circuit breaker. If it doesn't have a reset, it's probably auto-resetting when you turn the key off.

I notice on the fuse panel listing that the power windows also use a 30a breaker-type. If you have power windows (and they are working) you could trade those two breakers (I'm assuming they are the same). If the power windows still work you would know the breaker was good.

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