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What Are The Common Acura MDX Climate Control Problems? [& How To Fix Them?]

Perhaps you’re planning to buy an Acura MDX. But you want to know what to expect with its climate control system. So now you’re wondering about that car's standard cooling and heating problems. We've done plenty of research, and here's what we found!

Some problems encountered by an Acura MDX’s climate control system are reduced overall performance, a faulty thermostat, and a refrigerant leak. Troubleshoot the SUV’s climate control functions before attempting repairs.

Then, use the correct method based on your findings to increase the likelihood of restoring the system’s standard features.

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Keep reading as we discuss each potential MDX SUV climate control problem in greater detail. As you go through this post, we’ll also tackle the possible solutions for each specific issue. Let's dive in!

Acura MDX Tech in a gray color near the river.

3 Common Acura MDX Climate Control Problems (And Their Possible Fixes)

Black Acura MDX car moving on the street.

Reduced Performance

A reduction in climate control performance in an Acura MDX often originates from a dirty cabin air filter. Despite this issue being a relatively common problem for this SUV, it’s also a shared concern among most vehicles.

It’s because the cabin air filter’s job is to separate the dirt and other particles that might otherwise enter the vehicle’s interior.

Over time, the filter can accumulate significant amounts of dirt. If so, air may have trouble entering the climate control system, leading to low heating or cooling performance.

How To Fix

Replacing the Acura MDX’s cabin air filter should restore the Acura MDX’s climate control’s optimal performance. Follow these general steps to help you complete this task:

What You’ll Need
  • Replacement cabin air filter
Step-By-Step Guide
  1. Turn off the Acura MDX's engine and engage its hand or parking brake.
  2. Open the cabin’s glove compartment and temporarily remove the items in it.
  3. Push down the tabs on the newly exposed access door. Pull it out afterward.
  4. Push in the tabs on the filter tray. Pull out the mount and the filter afterward.
  5. Remove the old cabin air filter and replace it with the new unit. Make sure to pay attention to the orientation.
  6. Return the filter tray with the new filter to its original location.
  7. Reinstall the access door.
  8. Turn on the Acura MDX’s engine and test whether the climate control system is working as intended.

View this Acura MDX cabin air filter on Amazon.

Watch this video if you need a visual guide:

Also, don’t forget to read our post on the effects of using a car AC filter. Follow that link to gain additional insights into that component’s functionality.

Faulty Thermostat

The thermostat’s function is typically to control the engine’s temperature. In particular, it helps in preventing the engine from overheating.

But a bad or worn thermostat may fail at preventing an engine from overheating, which may also affect the Acura MDX’s climate control system.

Some possible causes that may cause the thermostat to fail are:

  • Short circuit
  • Worn electrodes
  • Software glitches
  • Frequent fluctuations in temperature

Operating the Acura MDX’s climate control while its thermostat is faulty may cause the system to supply the incorrect temperature.

If so, the driver and the SUV’s passengers may feel hot and uncomfortable while staying in the cabin.

How To Fix

Replacing the thermostat may help solve this problem. Bear in mind that this job often requires sufficient automotive experience and knowledge.

If you wish to proceed with this job, continue by following these steps:

What You’ll Need
  • Ratchet and socket
  • Wheel chocks
  • Extension bar
  • Drain pan
  • Replacement thermostat
Step-By-Step Guide
  1. Turn off the SUV’s engine and wait for it to cool.
  2. Engage the hand or parking brake. Chock the wheels afterward.
  3. Place a drain pan underneath the engine block.
  4. Open the hood if it’s safe to touch and locate the faulty thermostat.
  5. Disconnect the negative battery cable from its terminal.
  6. Remove the small hose connected to the duct. Take note that this duct connects the air box to the throttle body.
  7. Remove the other hose at the opposite side of the part you disconnected from the previous step.
  8. Unscrew the bolt securing the clamp on the duct.
  9. Wiggle the duct until it’s loose. Carefully pull out the duct from the throttle body afterward.
  10. Disconnect the wire connected to the temperature sensor.
  11. Remove the bolts securing the thermostat’s mount. You may need to disconnect and move some hoses to access the bolts.
  12. Disconnect the ground wire from the thermostat.
  13. Remove the thermostat’s housing.
  14. Wedge a flathead screwdriver into the small handle on the thermostat. Then, use that tool to pry the old thermostat from its mounting location.
  15. Install the new thermostat while paying attention to its orientation.
  16. Go through the previous steps to return the removed parts to their original locations.
  17. Turn on the SUV's engine. Check if the engine doesn't overheat and if the climate control system works optimally.

See this replacement thermostat housing on Amazon.

Warning: Pulling out the hose attached to the thermostat may leak fluid from the assembly. Control this spill by ensuring the drain pain is in the proper place.

Don’t forget to refill the MDX’s lost fluid after completing this replacement job.

Note: You might believe you can’t lack the confidence and know-how to complete this task without making mistakes. If so, request expert help from seasoned automotive professionals.

But prepare to spend about $124 for the replacement service.

Watch the following video if you need a visual representation of this replacement job:

Refrigerant Leak

Your Acura MDX may supply air to the SUV’s cabin with the incorrect temperature. It might be because the climate control system has a refrigerant leak.

Aside from an incorrect cabin temperature, other symptoms to watch out for are:

  • Clicking sound while climate control is active
  • Persistent warning light on the dashboard
  • Complete climate control system failure

How To Fix

First, find the leak in your Acura MDX’s climate control system. Watch the video below to learn how to complete this initial step:

Next, follow these steps to seal the leak:

What You’ll Need
  • Wheel chocks
  • Charging hose assembly
  • Clean cloth or rag
  • Automotive AC leak sealer
Step-By-Step Guide
  1. Turn off the SUV’s engine and allow it to cool for a few minutes.
  2. Engage the MDX’s hand or parking brake. Chock the wheels afterward.
  3. Open the hood and find the low-side port.
  4. Open the low-side port and attach the recharging hose to the opening.
  5. Attach the sealer’s container to the recharging hose.
  6. Turn on the MDX’s engine and climate control system.
  7. Set the system to its maximum cooling setting.
  8. Turn the valve on the sealer’s can until the pin pierces its opening.
  9. Hold the sealer’s container upside down to dispense the solution into the climate control system.
  10. Turn off climate control and the engine afterward.
  11. Remove the sealer and the charging hose from the low-side port.
  12. Close the low-side port, and turn on the engine and climate control system again.
  13. Allow the vehicle to idle for at least 15 minutes to let the solution circulate through the system.

See this product on Amazon.

Watch this clip to see the steps mentioned above in action. It’s important to note that the person in the following video is working on another vehicle.

Nonetheless, the process should still be similar to sealing a climate control leak in an Acura MDX:

Why Is My Acura MDX AC Blowing Hot Air?

Acura MDX interior photoshoot. Seats, dashboard, buttons close-up, Why Is My Acura MDX AC Blowing Hot Air?

An Acura MDX’s AC unit blowing hot air typically means a problem from within the cooling or climate control system. The source of this issue may originate from:

  • Blown fuse
  • AC coolant leak
  • Expansion valve clog
  • Bad compressor clutch

Why Are The AC Controls Disabled On My Acura MDX Navigation Screen?

Acura MDX interior photoshoot.

Controlling the Acura MDX’s AC from the navigation screen might yield little to no results because of problems like low battery and a software error.

Resetting the SUV's software may restore the AC's normal functions, including the navigation screen's features. An alternate solution would be to replace the car's battery and ensure secure cables are connected to its terminals.

Our Final Thoughts

Acura MDX in a gray color in the parking near the river.

Remember to find the main reason your Acura MDX’s climate control system is acting up. Next, use the appropriate DIY technique to help restore the system’s normal functions.

Otherwise, you may request help from automotive repair specialists to help diagnose the cause of the problem and fix it.

Made it to the end? Check out these helpful related articles!

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