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Re: broken handle on passenger side dashboard
Quick explanation--you need to remove the lower panel (by your knees), remove any screws that may be holding the vents in place, then carefully pry out vents--it's tight but you can wiggle then out. Now you can see the two 13mm (maybe 15mm) nuts that hold the handle in place. Use a wrench or small ratchet to remove nuts. This part is tough too so keep your 'patience' hat on.
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The problem is that the plastic lines that the air flows through get frail and cracks and breaks.What happens is when the hose breaks you loose vacuum and the system reverts to defrost mode.You should be able to see it from under the hood on the passengers side.You will have to find the area that is broken and then go to the parts store and get some rubber hose that will fit over the plastic hose.Take a piece of the plastic hose with you so you can get the right size hose to fit over it.This just happened to my 97 Astro van.I found the broken hose and repaired it with the rubber line and is working normal now.Hope this helps.Let me know what you find out.Good luck.
just take off the inside panel and look inside the should be some tiny silver bars that either pull up or go side to side, then pull that should open it. also you can get to the handle from the inside access and replace from an auto parts store
Small vacuum hose(1/8 inch) is broken or has a crack causing a vacuum leak. Leak could be between intake on engine to vacuum canister or from canister to control inside van. It runs inside the wireing harness. Canister is mounted passenger side of engine bay. Black and about the size of a grapefruit. I had same problem on 2 astro vans.