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There is no direct way to detect it.
A good guess is, does the fan blow fresh air into the car, while the car is sleeping in the sun?

There has been a nice video here in the forum. Someone fixed some small pieces of paper and after a while, one could see the fans blowing...
 

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There are actually several ways to check it. Search these forums; this topic has been discussed extensively.

The easiest way is to go to the System Infomation Energy screen (the one with the outline of the car). The roof of the car in the diagram is actually a graph, dynamically showing if energy is being produced, and how much in relative terms. The sunnier the day the more of the squares on the roof of the diagram will be filled white. It's subtle and many people miss it.

Also, there's a video that Fab posted a couple of times in this forum where he tied some string to the air vent grills and left the car off and asleep in the sun. You can clearly see the fans blowing the string. These fans are powered by the solar panel. (Specifically, the solar panel will power the fans once it has fully charged the 12V battery)

Brent
 

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You could also park it in the sun, wait a while and see if you hear the cabin fans whirring (I believe the cabin fan is located near the passenger side where the windscreen meets the hood).
 

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What Sandy Eggo said. Roll the two front windows down and park it in the sun. Return an hour or two later or so (I really don't know how long it takes to turn on the blower). Then, without opening the doors or waking up the car at all, reach in through the open window and check if air is blowing out the air outlets. If so, it's working.
 

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I just hope the fan is accessible - the Audi A8 had used this for years, but the fans let go after some years due to the many hours the fan operates.


What Sandy Eggo said. Roll the two front windows down and park it in the sun. Return an hour or two later or so (I really don't know how long it takes to turn on the blower). Then, without opening the doors or waking up the car at all, reach in through the open window and check if air is blowing out the air outlets. If so, it's working.
 
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