Repairing Blower Motor Resistor Pack on 98 Astro

Repairing Blower Motor Resistor Pack on 98 Astro

Postby KADMANDAK [OP] » June 9th 2010, 6:35pm

I only have High Speed on my heater blower, which likely means the resistor pack is bad. Autozone price is $55! Anyone repair the resistor pack by soldering some replacement heavy-duty resistors? (I would think Radio Shack would carry resistors heavy enough to handle the current).
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Re: Repairing Blower Motor Resistor Pack on 98 Astro

Postby Woodweasel » June 9th 2010, 6:54pm

Shop around. I have seen them from 25-50. The time youd spend to find the right resistor, pulling the old one out, soldering it on and reinstalling it would probably take just as long if you were to go get a new one. And who's to say the med or low setting wont be the next to go, then you have to go through all that again.
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Re: Repairing Blower Motor Resistor Pack on 98 Astro

Postby rev_les » June 10th 2010, 1:35am

The "high" setting bypasses the resistor pack, so you're more than likely correct.Check the connector for good measure though, and take voltage readings to rule out the blower speed switch.I don't see why you couldn't find compatible resistors and solder them in, if you're feeling industrious.
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Re: Repairing Blower Motor Resistor Pack on 98 Astro

Postby Astroplane » June 10th 2010, 7:04am

Consider testing the blower motor to determine start-up amp draw.
The price of paying attention is cheap considering the alternative.
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Re: Repairing Blower Motor Resistor Pack on 98 Astro

Postby KADMANDAK [OP] » June 11th 2010, 2:19am

Re: 1998 Astro AWD with only the high-speed front blower working...

I pulled the blower resistor pack and found it to be different looking than the pictures of the after-market replacements the auto parts stores sell, which show resistors (and other stuff) mounted to a ceramic holder.

My resistor pack is a flat circuit board with sine-wave traces on both sides. One side is a single sine wave trace with a small horse-shoe shaped fusible link near the center. The opposite side of the board has a double sine-wave trace (wide and thin parallel traces) with two more small horse-shoe shaped fusible links.

The different resistances (for the different speed settings) appear to be developed by the metallurgy and length of the sine-wave traces.

All three of the tiny links are still in-tact and conducting. All the traces are conducting from end to end except one. Taking some readings with an Ohms meter, I have found an open circuit on the side of the board with the single fusible ink. One of the legs of the link has separated from the trace leaving a small air gap underneath.

I am hoping that these small fusible links melt at a much higher temperature than solder.

Question: If I attempt to close the gap with solder, will the horse-shoe link instantly self destruct from the heat of the soldering iron or is there some cushion? If this is so, can anyone recommend a product to close the air gap that would not involve significant heat. I understand they make a conducting paint for repairing the traces on defroster windows.
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Re: Repairing Blower Motor Resistor Pack on 98 Astro

Postby Astroplane » June 11th 2010, 6:29am

Rockauto has pics of the correct style resistor for your year. Scroll down the list. AC Delco brand for $37.00. Updated design, I wouldn't bother trying to fix yours. As I said before, you may want to test your amp draw before connecting a new resistor to the circuit.
The price of paying attention is cheap considering the alternative.
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Re: Repairing Blower Motor Resistor Pack on 98 Astro

Postby KADMANDAK [OP] » June 15th 2010, 3:40pm

I am happy to report that I had success re-soldering the link that separated from the circuit board on the original blower motor resistor pack. I achieved a good solder joint without melting the link and now have multiple blower speeds instead of just high speed.

I do plan to replace the resistor pack in the near future as the traces look like they have degraded some. The traces are not much thicker than a gum wrapper. The three traces are of different widths (and different resistances). The thinist trace looks like it could fail at any time as it is only about 1/32" wide.
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