How does the Air Con work?

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Oct 23, 2020
I've had my Miev 12 months now, so I used it through last winter, and to be honest, it was a struggle.
Mainly because I don't understand how the aircon/heater/blower/demist works.

The blower makes no difference to the range - on cold
Turn the dial to hot and it decimates the range.
Turn the dial to cold and it pops back up again.
Leave it on cold and press the A/C button and the range halves again.

Absolutely love the car in summer - but and slightly dreading winter.
How does everyone deal with both demisting, and also being comfortably warm in winter?
I did read somewhere that the cars have the facility to pre-heat whilst charging, but not sure how that works?
The temperature knob controls the heater element and, if enabled, the A/C pressure (how cold the coil gets). With the temperature on the green dot, the car won't heat or cool the air unless the A/C button is lit. Even then, the A/C compressor runs minimally, just enough to dry the air. Unlike a conventional car, the temperature knob rests in the middle when you want unconditioned air. The blue zone only conditions the air when the A/C button is lit.

As for de-misting/defogging, I leave my temperature knob at the green dot, the fan off, and the vents set to the windshield. While driving, there is enough pressure from vehicle movement to force air through the vents and keep the windshield from fogging up in most cases. On cold and damp days, I usually have to either crack a rear window open or put the fan in the lowest setting, keeping the A/C compressor off for range. The recirculator flap and vent knob control the airflow regardless of whether or not the fan is on (which is my favorite feature of the climate system).

As for keeping warm in the winter, I wear a heavy coat and insulated gloves with the heated seat turned on. To balance range and comfort, one can also turn the temperature knob into the first click of the red zone and run the fan at the second or third click to keep some warm air coming in (via measurements, this provides about 60 degree F incoming air). To preheat the car, you should have a large remote to go along with the key fob that can be used to activate the heating system while the car is plugged in. The HEAT setting is too weak, so I use HEAT for a couple minutes just to get the coolant loop heated up, and then I switch to the defrost setting on the remote. That does really good at warming the car up, but it needs to run for nearly the entire 30 minutes to adequately heat the interior.