So, here's the story...
Driving home from work the other night (last Friday), I decided to try an experiment. I wanted to see the best fuel economy I could achieve going from work to home, which is always the most difficult part of my commute in terms of MPG, but this story isn't about MPGs... I set my nav to calculate the most ecological route for me, which ended up taking me quite a long time, but I knew that would be the case. Since I was trying to maximize my fuel efficiency, I didn't keep the climate control system on continuously, but rather used my heated seat and only turned on the system when the windows began to fog.
So, maybe it was the third or fourth cycle of turning the system on, when I was surprised by what happened. The first thing I noticed is that the fan cranked up to full speed - it was then that I looked at the temperature setting, which looked like this: 12*. That's right - a tiny 1 and a normal sized 2... I first tried to raise the temperature, but pressing + or - did nothing. I then tried powering off the system, but that didn't work at first either. So, it was about 25* outside and I've got full-force cold air blowing on me... Eventually, after some serious, frantic button-pressing (all while driving), the climate system shut down. I waited a few minutes to try it again, and everything seemed to return to normal. The only exception is that when I pressed the + and - buttons to raise or lower the temp, the system made no sound, although the changes seemed to take effect.
Since the issue above occurred, I've used my remote start about three times, and the climate control system no longer seems to operate during remote starts, even though it's freaking cold out! I went into the Settings menu for Remote Start, and all the options are now grayed out, with no way to change them. Btw, although I previously looked at this menu, I never changed any of these settings, preferring to leave them all on Auto (I think that was the default). Other than during remote start, the climate system does seem to be operating ok, although as mentioned above, I still do not hear any beep tones when using + and - to change the temp.
A little research turned up these threads with seemingly similar issues:
I guess I'm in for an exciting time with my dealer, unless anyone knows any easy fixes... I hate car dealers and service shops, period. They did give me free oil change coupon when I bought the car, so I guess I'll set up an appointment for that and drop this on them at the same time... There goes a day in my life.