How to operate Climate Control on Toyota RAV4

If your RAV4 has automatic dual-zone climate control, you and your passenger can set it and forget it a lot like the thermostat at home.

Toyota RAV4, fourth generation (XA40; 2012-2018) – (photo by Toyota)

Turn on Climate Control

To turn it on, press AUTO on the top half of the knob. When you first turn it on the temperatures will match. Twist the AUTO knob to adjust them to the temperature you want.


How to SYNC Climate Control

If your passenger wants a different setting they can change their temperature by turning the SYNC knob. The SYNC light will turn off. The system will automatically maintain the temperature shown on the display. Pressing the top half of the SYNC knob synchronizes the passenger’s temperature back to match the drivers. The SYNC light will turn back on.

How to turn off Climate Control

To turn the system off completely press OFF below the AUTO switch.

Manual Climate Control

If you want to you can operate the system manually as well. With a few exceptions changing anything but the temperature settings will switch the system into Manual Mode and you will see the AUTO light go out.

Adjusting fan speed

To adjust the fan speed use the fan arrow buttons.

Changing vents

Pressing one of the mode arrows up or down changes which vents are being used. As you cycle through you can see your choices in the display.

Air recirculation

The Recirculate button switches the air intake between inside and outside air whenever you push it. If the light’s on, it’s recirculating inside air.


Micro dust and pollen filter

Right above air recirculation button is micro dust and pollen filter button. Pressing it turns it on. After one to three minutes, the air conditioning system will automatically revert to your previous settings.

Defog windscreen and windows

Pressing the FRONT defog button overrides the other controls, except for temperature, to draw air from outside and send it to the windshield. Pushing it a second time turns it off.

Pressing the AUTO switch at any time will put the system back in automatic mode. To defog the windshield as fast as possible press the FRONT windshield defog button. The system will switch out of AUTO and the vent and fan speed will change to focus on the inside of the windshield. Raise the temperature and make sure the air conditioning indicator is lit to speed up the process. Press the FRONT defog button again to turn it off.

Defog rear window and outside mirrors

If you notice the rear window fogging up, press the REAR defog switch to turn it on. Unlike most of the other controls this doesn’t take the climate control system out of automatic mode. It just turns on the heating elements in the rear window and outside mirrors. The heaters stay on between 15 and 60 minutes depending on conditions. They can be turned off earlier by pushing the button again.

Contact the author: gusedgar@wheelsjoint.com


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