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Discussion Starter #1
Just got a '98 Escort...don't know much about 'em.

Mine's an SE trim, according to the tailgate- what's the difference between the SE and LX? Presumably one has more standard features, but what features are they?

I know when Dad bought his first Focus (2000) Ford bucked convention and made LX the base model and SE mid-level trim :roll:, but I'm guessing that on the Escorts, LX was an upgrade.


Also, this is my first long-term relationship with an air-conditioned Ford with these HVAC knobs. If memory serves, there's a fairly complicated algorithm to figuring when the A/C will actually run. Obviously when the selector is set to A/C or Max A/C, and defrost. But what about the other positions. Seems like there's one or two more that it will kick on if the ambient temp is above 50* or something.
 

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the SE is the more luxurious package, just like with the focus. I don't know the differences off the top of my head. I have a 99 SE myself.

as for the AC, it comes on in all the positions except 2, the two closest to off if I remember correctly.
 

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the sport package can be on an SE or LX. the SE came with more standard features than the LX.
 

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in 97, the base was the lower trim level, and the LX was the higher trim level. From 98-02, the LX was the lower trim level, and the SE was the higher trim level.

I only have the marketing guide for 97, but here is the run down for that year:

Base 315A Standard Equipment:
5 speed transmission
P185/65/14 black sidewall tires
Argent semi-styled wheels with bright half caps
cloth and vinyl low-back buckets
electronic AM/FM stereo with 4 premium speakers

LX 316A Standard Equipment:
5 speed transmission
P185/65/14 black sidewall tires
full luxury bolt-on wheel covers
upgraded cloth and vinyl low-back buckets
electronic AM/FM stereo with 4 premium speakers

LX 317A Standard Equipment:
5 speed transmission
P185/65/14 black sidewall tires
full luxury bolt-on wheel covers
upgraded cloth and vinyl low-back buckets
air conditioning
rear window defroster
driver's side remote keyless entry
electronic AM/FM stereo with 4 premium speakers

LX 318A Standard Equipment:
5 speed transmission
P185/65/14 black sidewall tires
full luxury bolt-on wheel covers
upgraded cloth and vinyl low-back buckets
air conditioning
rear window defroster
all door remote keyless entry with anti-theft
dual power mirrors
power door locks
power windows
electronic AM/FM stereo with 4 premium speakers
 

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In my experience the A/C comes on in any position except vent and I have the wiring schematics to back it up.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
madmatt2024 said:
In my experience the A/C comes on in any position except vent and I have the wiring schematics to back it up.
I don't suppose I can splice a toggle switch in a wire somewhere in there to "alter" that very easily, can I?

I'm envisioning it as:
When the switch is ON, the HVAC behaves as Ford intended.
When the switch is OFF, the A/C will not engage, regardless of where the selector is positioned.

Probably more work than it's worth, but if it's just one wire...
 

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It is one wire and I have done exactly what you are talking about. I hid a small toggle switch under the dash to disable the compressor when I want. There is an orange/white stripe wire coming out of the vent selector switch, put a switch inline with it and your good.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Sweet- thanks! Probably do that when I put in my CD player next week, since I'll have it all apart already.

Thanks for the LX/SE info, too. Wish I had the original sticker for this thing, or a brochure or something...but knowing the car's history since new, no chance of either "turning up" anywhere.
 

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madmatt2024 said:
It is one wire and I have done exactly what you are talking about. I hid a small toggle switch under the dash to disable the compressor when I want. There is an orange/white stripe wire coming out of the vent selector switch, put a switch inline with it and your good.
Are you sure about the wire color. The only wire I see that can disable the compressor its an orange / green wire and not the one you specified.

Just to clear some doubts.

 

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It could have been orange and green. I did it over 2 years ago so my memory is a little fuzzy.
 

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Thats why we are here to help each other, just wanted to clear doubts.
Im planing on doing this and use the bottom that came with my radio mounting kit.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks for the diagram.

I didn't add a switch when I put the radio in because I was tight on time.

Anyway...now that I've driven the thing a bit...I want an interruption switch on the power to the fan, too.

My '97 Ranger (same basic controls, but no A/C) has a bad blower motor resistor, so the fan doesn't blow on the two lowest settings. Easy fix, but I haven't done it (been a couple years now) because I've found I really like being able to have the vents open with the fan off when cruising down the highway. Ram air is more than enough, low fan is too much air.
 

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FWIW, according to the Escort owner's manual the AC doesn't work in Vent and Floor... Below is a scan from the manual:

 

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I have the same magnaflow too and love it, you can usually get a used one on ebay or cragislist. I wanted a valid warranty so I got it here. Magnaflow 16646. Also some of the forum sponsors usually have a sale going on. Either way its a great exhaust system, sounds great, and very easy to install.
 
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