What is a blower motor relay and how does it work?

Any time it’s hot and you flip on your air conditioning, or if it’s chilly and you need to warm up, you have the blower motor to thank for getting your car’s cabin at just the temp you want it.
The blow motor works because of something called a relay—an electric switch—that acts sort of like a controller. It is the relay’s job to tell the blow motor when to turn on and circulate temperature-controlled air in your car.
Your vehicle will have as many blower motor relays as there are blower motors. If your car has more than one blower motor, like if you have a separate rear air conditioning unit, each motor will have its own relay.

How to replace the blower motor relay

Most of the time, a mechanic will find the blower motor relay in the under-dash or under-hood fuse box. To replace it, they will:
  • Disconnect the defective blower motor relay from the electric socket
  • Check the socket for any damage. If the socket is intact, the new blower motor relay is installed
  • Test by running the heat and air conditioning and various speeds and temperatures
And just like that, you’re back to using your heat and air conditioning to your heart’s delight!

How do I know when to replace the blower motor relay?

When you turn on your heat or air conditioning and there’s no or less air blowing out, something’s probably gone wrong with your blower motor relay. It’s a pretty normal problem: over time and with use, the blower motor relay can fail.
Important note: the blower motor relay is not commonly inspected during any routine maintenance service. A blown motor switch or fuse can also mimic relay failure.
If your fans are acting funky, it’s best to have an expert diagnose the issue.

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