Climate & aircon - cheddar
The trusty Mondeo has climate control, brilliant, set the temp and it reaches it quickly and holds it. The principal is that it maintains the temp of the air in the car.

The FocuST has aircon, the principal is to maintain the temp of the air coming into the car which if you want a steady stream of warm air on your feet makes sense.

Also it is easier to reach and turn a knob to turn the fan speed or temp up and down than to hold your finger on a button however the push button distribution of the climate system offers more combinations of active/inactive vents.

Not sure I would pay much extra for climate control should it be an option in the future though.

Climate & aircon - bell boy
ive got climate in my car and dont like it
i prefer to twiddle knobs until im happy makes me feel in charge i spose
Climate & aircon - idle_chatterer
I much prefer climate, useful compromise might be VW's climatronic which allows the temperature to be controlled whilst you do the rest? Doesn't change my preference though...

Haven't found dual zone climate of much use though, I (we) pretty much always run both sides at the same temperature.

Edited by idle_chatterer on 16/11/2009 at 23:43

Climate & aircon - runboy
Our small Kia has aircon and a small engine - change temp up/down, aircon on/off so as to have some engine power and no steamy windows.

Our Lexus with a nice V8 and climate - set and forget as climate always on, temp at 20c and away you go. If my bum gets warm I can switch on the cooled seats - nothing like a cool behind and warm air on the face....

Give me climate control any day.
Climate & aircon - legacylad
I have digital climate control on my 626...moves in increments of .5 degree....easy peasy to use, in conjunction with external ambient temperature which is a one touch button to switch between setting internal temp and finding out how cold it is 'outdoors'.
Never tested the accuracy of the settings just seems to get hotter in winter and cooler in summer when I adjust the temps digitally. Nice, easily visible readout too.
Climate & aircon - cattleman6
I have climate controll etc etc on my 1999 Seat Toledo. After nearly 176,000 miles both the climate control and quantities of extras all still work. When I hire other vehicles and just turn on their airconditioning, I either freeze or suffer from extreme stufiness when I turn it off. I don't like noisy openned wondows on motorways etc. Climate control is terribly important to me.
Climate & aircon - L'escargot
In my 2003 Focus the automatic climate control senses the temperature of the air in the car near the fascia. Unfortunately as soon as you switch it on it gives you maximum airflow like a howling gale regardless. To combat that characteristic I just use it manually, so climate control is wasted on me.

Edited by L'escargot on 17/11/2009 at 07:41

Climate & aircon - Armitage Shanks {p}
I have just had 5 years with climate and am now back with manually controlled air con and I'm with the school of throught that likes making small adjustments manually.

Air cooled seats in a Lexus - there's posh for you!
Climate & aircon - Altea Ego
I have had climate for the last 5 years (two dual zone vw systems) and at first i thought it was rubbish. However I have come to realise what it does. I set the temperature according to the dials, assuming the car would maintain *that* temperature. It doesent of course it maintains *a* temperature. So I learned the number means nothing except "wamer" or "colder" Once you grasp that concept it works reasonably well.
Climate & aircon - bathtub tom
I've got climate and SWMBO loves it, as it means she doesn't have to try and understand the heater controls and symbols. I should think she's typical of a large proportion of drivers.

How often do you see cars driving around with the sreen misted up and driver's window open because they don't understand demist?

I've a friend who sets max heat and air to fascia vents, frying your eyeballs and freezing your feet.

I've driven with a colleague who couldn't grasp the concept of mixing hot air with the air-con to obtain a comfortable setting. He wanted to keep turning the air-con on in short bursts as 'it was too cold to keep it running all the time'.

Climate & aircon - redviper
My Girlfriends C4 has dual zone digital climate control, that is set in .5 increments which when we 1st got it we had tremendous fun trying to see if we could create some atmospheric conditions in the car by having one set to ?HI? and the other all the way down to ?LOW?, as you will have guessed it didn?t work. But using it properly I think its great and usually its just ?set to forget?.

We had a hire car Mondeo for work once, that had dual zone but if you tried to set one all the way up to ?HI? and the other one down to ?LOW? it would bring to the two into line with each other ? spoilsports!

My Vectra has climate control but set by a analogue dial but you can just ?set to forget? ive never tested it to see if its right but it seems to work well enough, as that?s all I ever use now I hardly ever use the standard fan controls, I just select ?auto? and leave it to do its business ? great stuff

Climate & aircon - M.M
The climate on my Mondeo III is just perfect with almost no fiddling. For me setting at 21.5deg is correct all year round. The only two circumstances that need user input are on a cold morning to push the "screen" button to clear mist but after 30sec push auto again. Also on rare occasions the aircon comes on with a very high fan speed to cool the car rapidly when you might not want your person to be cooled that much. Just two taps on the temp up button will remove this blast of air and after a couple of mins it can be returned to 21.5deg. Great system.
Climate & aircon - turbo11
The climate on the Mazda 3 my wife has,the Mazda 6 I had and the Mazda 5 I now own is excellent. It will maintain accurately the temperature set. The only time I touch any buttons is to adjust it fractionally up or down depending on the clothing I am wearing.Most of the time its set to 19.5C for me.I haven't yet needed to use the "screen" button,as my car hardly ever mists up.
Climate & aircon - idle_chatterer
My experience is that climate control has improved markedly since my fist car with it - a Vectra CDX in 1997. On that car I had to constantly adjust it, subsequent A4 B5 & B7, Mondeo III, Golf IV, Civic FN2, E92 330d have all been pretty much perfect.

Intervening short term Mondeo III LX and Focus I Zetec with 'manual' aircon required constant and in the case of the Mondy excessive adjustment, hence vote for (decent) climate anytime.

I've ridden in a number of cars where the driver doesn't appear to understand how to use their climate control or even their manual setup e.g. fans on full screen to demist followed by 'off' with no ventilation - stifling, or people with climate control who close the vents leaving the poor fans blowing against closed vents, I think the expression is 'RTFM' ?
Climate & aircon - dieselfitter
Has it already been pointed out that climate control on auto = aircon running full-time? First car I had with climate was a Galaxy Ghia X, and I just left in on auto - until the aircon pump packed up due to continuous use, fortunately still under warranty. Also aircon running full time = extra fuel consumption. After that, I mostly used it on the Econ setting i.e. aircon pump off, and still use climate that way. Most cars with climate have the facility to manually switch off the aircon when not needed (which is most of the time), but I understand it's necessary to turn it on (if only briefly) once every couple of weeks and circulate the refrigerant, which lubricates the system and stops the seals drying out. Or is this an urban myth?
Climate & aircon - idle_chatterer
I think you are correct, any aircon should be run for a period of about 10 mins regularly, can't remember if I was told monthly or weekly - to lubricate the seals, otherwise they'll deteriorate pretty quickly.

I leave my aircon on with climate most of the time - I am profligate I know but I think it's only costing me / the Earth about 1 or 2 mpg - comparable to an opened window / sunroof.

However I do tend to switch it out when we get a period of weather when the ambient temperature doesn't get above 4 degC, because then when it does switch in and out you mist up.
Climate & aircon - Alanovich
The climate on the Mazda 3 my wife has the Mazda 6 I had and
the Mazda 5 I now own is excellent.

Interesting. The Climate Control is the one thing I genuinely hate on my Mazda 6. The difference for me though seems to be that my car does mist up a fair bit. So I'm forever fiddling with the temp/flow dials to get the screen clear, then readjust once that's done. One thing I hate is that when I switch auto on and off, it always seems to reset itself on some random direction, and not the direction I had set it to manually. So I have to go through the menu to find the direction I wanted. This irritates the daylights out of me.

I prefer the manual aircon in my wife's VW Touran.

Why, when there was such collaboration with Ford for so long, do Mazdas not have heated windscreens? Bah.
Climate & aircon - jbif
I love climate control, on all the cars I have had, I have left it on permanently. As per M.M , I set mine at 21.5 most of the time, but on some occasions tweak it slightly up or down for a few minutes. The few times I have had manual aircon, I have hated the constant fiddling needed to control the temperature at a comfortable level, and the fact that windows invariably misted up in those cars when you stared up after a brief stop.
The Climate Control is the one thing I genuinely hate on my Mazda 6. The difference for me though seems to be that my car does mist up a fair bit. So I'm forever fiddling with the temp/flow dials to get the screen clear, then readjust once that's done. One thing I hate is that when I switch auto on and off, it always seems to reset itself on some random direction, and not the direction I had set it to manually. So I have to go through the menu to find the direction I wanted. >>

Alanovich: Seems to me that your climate system is faulty.

Climate & aircon - Alanovich
Could be, I suppose. It's due an annual service in January, one month before the warranty runs out (not manufacturer warranty, the car's almost 4 years old now). So I'll get them to check it over then. I intend (at the moment) to keep this car another 3 and a half years, so I'll be quite pleased if it's faulty and can be fixed, because the prospect of 3.5 years more of this faffing about might have me checking out my savings/credit rating a bit sooner than I wanted.
Climate & aircon - theterranaut
Alanovich, if yours is faulty then mine is faulty in exactly the same manner.

But personally, I think its just poor design on Mazda's part.

Climate & aircon - DP
I had a call from SWMBO not long after we bought the Golf (Climatronic equipped). She reckoned the heater was broken because she had it set to 22°C and there was only tepid air coming out of the vents, but when she set it to HI, it went hot again. I explained that the system monitors the temperature inside the car and adjusts itself accordingly, and that the inside of the car must be at, or close to 22°C already. She was still complaining that she was cold.

I know what she means though. The temperature of the air coming out of the vents is almost as important as the temperature inside the car when it's either very hot or very cold outside. Warm air blowing over your feet on a cold day, or cold air on your face on a hot one is a nice feeling, even if the inside of the car is already at temperature. The human body takes time to adjust itself to ambient temperature, and additional heat or cooling is often desirable, regardless of the temperature around you.

The Volvo has dual zone air con, with separate temperature dials for driver and passenger. As mentioned above, I just find myself setting both dials the same.

I also prefer a standard heater with separate air-con button to climate control. The Climatronic system is fiddly and irritating, although it doesn't help that VW installed it in a preposterously low point in the dash on the mkIV Golf.
Climate & aircon - dieselfitter
One of the most useful things about aircon is the ability to keep all windows mist free if it's pouring with rain and you have a car full. Doesn't matter whether it's manual or climate, either will supply dry air to the car interior. If you have serious problems with misting, make sure you haven't pressed the recirculation button by mistake.

Climate & aircon - DP
I agree re the demisting. The manual air-con system in my Volvo, and the one before it in my mk2 Mondeo would automatically turn on the air-con when you set the output to the windscreen. A nice touch. In the Volvo you can turn it off again, in the Ford you couldn't.

What I have noticed is that many cars with air-con seem to need the air-con on to remain mist free. I don't recall pre air-con cars having misting problems, apart from first thing in the morning obviously.
Climate & aircon - redviper
What I have noticed is that many cars with air-con seem to need the air-con

on to remain mist free. I don't recall pre air-con cars having misting problems

Yes ive often wondered the same thing, i wonder if its down to pollen filters though that are fitted into cars with Aircon - as a common issue (by all accounts) on my Astra G is that constant misting was due to dirty pollen filters - all the cars i had proir that DIDNT have Air Con, never had bad issues of misting - but my Astra G misted as soon as it would start spitting with rain hence the air con was always on.
Climate & aircon - dieselfitter
Or maybe change the pollen filter? Should be a routine service item anyway. But then not many people believe in following the service schedule - at least that's the conclusion I came to whilst shopping around for a used car this year.
Climate & aircon - redviper
the pollen filter was always changed at service intervals on my Astra G, but i read somewhere on this site, that sometimes its overlooked becasue on the Astra G the glovebox has to be removed to get to the Pollen filter and the whole thing was a bit fiddely.
Climate & aircon - Number_Cruncher
>>on the Astra G the glovebox has to be removed

Yes!, but, it was a much better set up than Astra F, where the pollen filter, if incorrectly fitted, would soak up the water running off the lower edge of the screen like a sponge, making the demisters in affected cars very effective misting devices!

The cool evaporator is where the water condenses out of the air coming into the cabin on cars fitted with AC. It is vital that this water has a good route to a drain out of the car if misting problems are to be avoided. Therefore, it's well worth checking that the AC drain tubes are clear and free of obstruction.

Climate & aircon - bathtub tom
It seems that pollen filters and air-con go hand-in-hand, that is you usually get both or neither.

Can anyone explain why?
Climate & aircon - Dave_TD
My '97 Escort has aircon but no pollen filter. My '01 Octavia had a pollen filter but no aircon. :-)

The Escort has a tendency to mist up on starting the engine a few hours after being driven with the aircon on, on wet days. I put this down to the evaporator still containing condensation from the earlier use, with the condensation being unable to evaporate owing to the high humidity in the atmosphere generally. It seems to me that many motorists don't actually understand how vehicle aircon works, which accounts for all the strange urban myths surrounding it.

As far as I understand it, basic aircon is simply the insertion of an extra radiator matrix into the stream of incoming air, with this matrix being held at a steady 4deg C. The air coming through the matrix is therefore cooled, and the moisture in the air condenses onto the fins of the matrix in the same way it does onto a bottle of coke when you take it out of the fridge. You can warm up the cooled (and dry!) air by passing it through the heater matrix as normal.

Climate control is the same as aircon, simply with the addition of a thermostat to automatically vary the heat control, much the same as the one on the central heating in your house.

Obviously aircon cannot work when the outside temperature is below 4deg C, because it's the temperature difference between the outside air and the cooled air that makes the difference. Also, the advice about running the system periodically comes about because a vehicle refrigeration system is subject to stresses and strains that the motor on a domestic fridge is not, so the vehicle system has to have more flexible joints in it which do need to be kept lubricated by passing oil over them regularly.

Edited by Dave_TD {P} on 17/11/2009 at 22:49

Climate & aircon - JamesH
Climate is great but really has to be set and forget to be effective for most. Too many just don't know the basic ventilation controls on a non-climate car. I've sat sweltering in the back with the heat set to full. On asking if the temperature could be lower, the driver just switched the fan off.

My first climate car was a 95 Peugeot 405, where the climate was basic but marketed as set and forget temperature control. I just left the temp slider in the middle and hardly touched it.

The first generation Leon was good. It was effective and had a massive auto button to reset after temporarily overriding the settings. The mk1 Octavia shared the Climatronic with the MvIV Golf and similar age Passat but all the buttons were the same size, it was mounted too low and there were only degree increments to choose from.

The Mk2 Octavia is much better, allowing warmer air for SWMBO's side and half-degree increments to the temperature. When in auto, the fan never spins to more than half speed, which takes place on startup when hot or a mile or two down the road when cold, allowing engine warm up first.

Many just don't get thermostats, in the car or in the home. Some just their home thermostat as an on off switch, or set it far too high in the misguided belief that the boiler will be tricked into working harder and heat the house quicker. In a past house share, following a few roasting days, I did take on the role of master of the thermostat and set the pins inside to stop anyone turning it up above 21.

Even in my parent's Civic, last winter I got in to find it set to 25. My mum said to me that my dad would not be told! However, the Civic does only have degree-increments and seems to need a lot of fiddling with the climate settings to get comfortable.
Climate & aircon - runboy
One thing the climate system on the Lexus has, and that now I've had it I think what a good idea, is auto recirculation if the outside air reaches a certain level of pollutants. It works away in the background and you don't notice it, save the twinkling of a light when it switches from outside air to inside only. Keeps those fumes out when needed and fresh air when it can. I know I can press a button/slide a lever myself but in heavy traffic it is a nice to have.
Climate & aircon - PeterEA
My BMW E92 also has auto recirculation, which was a nice bonus for me because I always fancied a Lexus which I knew had that facility. I couldn't afford the Lexus and only found out the E92 had auto recirc after I took delivery.
Climate & aircon - Mike H
>>I set the temperature according to the dials assuming the car would maintain *that*
temperature. It doesent of course it maintains *a* temperature. So I learned the number means
nothing except "wamer" or "colder" Once you grasp that concept it works reasonably well.

Correct. I have a Saab 9-5 with climate & dual zone and it works a treat. On the Saab at least, it works on perceived temperature - there is a sensor on the dashboard which works out how much sun there is, and using this and other parameters it adjusts the zone temperature so that you feel that it's the temperature that you've set. Not perfect, and it sometimes needs a quick tweak, but most of the time it's set & forget. The dual zone is an added bonus - SWMBO often sets it at 23 degrees, and our son sets it to 15.....

I also have electrically heated and fan-cooled seats, which are wonderful - not at the same time of course. Leather can be jolly cold!

Edited by Mike H on 18/11/2009 at 09:53

Climate & aircon - cheddar
Lots of interesting comments, yes the Mondeo climate does work a treat, you can set it and forget it though perhaps I am a control freak, I like fiddling with the FocuST's knobs.