How Much Does an AC Recharge Cost? (Average by Model)

It is known to most people that an AC refill is needed from time to time in a car. But, how much does it cost to recharge the AC? Let's find out!

ac recharge cost

The average AC recharge cost is between $150 and $300

  • The average price for the recharge is $50 to $150
  • The average price for the leak test is $100 to $150
  • You should always do a leak test with the right equipment before refilling an AC system.
  • Only let an AC certified workshop with the right equipment do any work to your AC system.
  • Always replace leaking parts before an AC recharge. This can increase the cost a lot, depending on the failed part.

Average AC Recharge Cost

AC Recharge CostLow: $100Average: $150High: $300

Estimated AC Recharge Cost by Car Model

These are the average estimated recharge cost by car model. The AC Recharge Cost can also differ depending on your engine type and year model.

Car ModelRecharge Cost
Ford F-150$200
Honda CR-V$150
Chevrolet Silverado$210
Ram 1500/2500/3500$210
Toyota RAV4$190
Toyota Camry$160

RELATED: Causes of Car AC is Not Blowing Cold Air

Parts Needed for an AC Recharge

Part NameRequired?All Models?
AC refrigerantYesYes
AC refrigerant oilPreferedYes
AC leak detector fluidPreferedYes
New CondenserIf leaking or faultyYes
New Condenser FanIf leaking or faultyYes
New O-RingsIf leaking or faultyYes
AC Pressure SwitchIf leaking or faultyYes
New AC CompressorIf leaking or faultyYes
AC pressure linesIf leaking or faultyYes
AC expansion valveIf leaking or faultyYes

Repairs commonly related to AC Recharge

Replacement TypePrice Range
Condenser Replacement Cost$200 – $500
Condenser Fan Replacement Cost$100 – $300
Expansion valve Replacement Cost$100 to $250
AC O-rings Replacement Cost$20 to $100
AC pipes replacement cost$50 to $200
AC Pressure switch replacement cost$50 to $100

RELATED: Does AC Leak Sealer Work?

A Mechanic’s Tips about an AC recharge

  • Always leak test the AC system before a refill.
  • Always vacuum test the AC system before you refill the AC. Condense, or water in the AC system may damage it quickly.
  • Check the AC compressor clutch and the AC pressure sensors before you do any advanced work on your AC system. If the AC compressor clutch is not engaging, you might be able to remove some shims inside of it to make it functional for some more time.
  • The best way to find AC problems is to connect the AC machine – Empty the system, put vacuum for 20 minutes. Check for any leaks and then refill the system with leak detector fluid, oil, and refrigerant. Let it run for 20 minutes and check the function and look out for any leaks. If everything seems fine, you can give the car to the customer. If it is not fine, empty the system again and repair any leaks and continue the troubleshooting.
  • Pressure tests are a better way to test for leaks than vacuum tests. Vacuum tests can seal the small leaks.

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What is a AC recharge?

All cars AC systems leak a little bit every year. After a while, you need to recharge the AC system. Before you do an AC recharge, you test for any leaks and test the system’s function.

How serious is low AC pressure?

The only thing you may notice when the AC pressure is low is that the AC is not working. However, some newer cars have a variable AC compressor, which can get seriously damaged if the AC system is empty. If you have an ac compressor with a clutch, you do not have to worry, though.

How often do you need to recharge the AC?

There is no specific schedule for when you should recharge your AC. Usually cars AC system have to be recharged every 6-8 years for natural reasons if you need a recharge before, there is probably a problem with a leak somewhere.

What are the symptoms of low AC pressure?

The only symptom you may notice is that you will not get any cooling effect inside your car. You might also hear the ac compressor go on and off on idle if you have an ac compressor with a clutch, though.

OBD codes associated with an AC Recharge

P0532: A/C Refrigerant Pressure Sensor A Circuit Low Input
P0531: A/C Refrigerant Pressure Sensor Circuit Performance
P0534: Air Conditioner Refrigerant Charge Loss
P0533: A/C Refrigerant Pressure Sensor Circuit High Input

Related Parts to a AC Recharge

Written by:

Magnus is the owner and main author of MechanicBase. He has been working as a mechanic for over 10 years, and the majority of them specialized in advanced diagnostics and troubleshooting. He has also been a motorsport (drifting) driver for over 5 years.