Imagine driving peacefully on a bright sunny morning listening to your favourite music and enjoying the scenery around you.
Now, imagine that your car’s air conditioning system suddenly stops blowing cold air, how would you feel?
Absolutely desperate of course! Any problem in your car that has to do with air conditioning can be very distressing, especially if you live in a hot country.
|AC is not blowing cold air||Low Refrigant Pressure / Low amount
Blend Air Doors
Clogged Cabin Filter
Replace Expansion Valve
Replace AC Compressor
Repair Air Valves
Replace Cabin Filter
Reasons Why Your AC System is Not Blowing Cold Air
The main issues that occur with the car’s air conditioning system are due to poor maintenance. It is important to check your car’s air conditioning system from time to time and make sure it is working properly.
There could be several reasons why your car’s AC has started to malfunction and we will discuss these problems in this article.
1. Damaged Condenser Fan
The first thing to check if your car air conditioner does not blow cold air is the condenser fan. If the fan is damaged and does not operate at full power, it will not cool down the heat coming from the refrigerant. In addition, you should also check the condenser fan’s wiring and connection and its placement to see if it is positioned correctly.
2. Freon Leak
Freon is another word for the refrigerant that cools the air. If there is a leak in the system through which the Freon escapes, the air conditioner will not blow cold air out. Modern car air conditioners are sensitive and need an optimal Freon level to work effectively. One way to check the Freon level is to use the charging machine, which removes all the refrigerant present and inputs the correct amount. If you find that the AC loses Freon very frequently, it is recommended that you check both the hoses and other components.
3. Needs Recharging
The air conditioning system must be recharged in order to work effectively. Recharging the AC means filling it with refrigerant so that it can cool down the hot air. Recharging is only a temporary solution if the system has a leak. You can perform the refill at home or have it done by a professional. I recommend taking the unit to a garage, as cars are very sensitive to the correct amount of pressure in the system.
4. Blend Air Door
Blend Air Door Actuators, also known as HVAC actuators, are responsible for controlling the position of air vents and mixing hot and cold air to achieve the optimum temperature. If the actuators do not work, you either get cold air only and no hot air, or hot air and no cold air. In such a case, take your vehicle to an automotive specialist who will repair the blend air door. The average cost will be between $130 and $530. The parts themselves cost about $85, but labor costs vary from vehicle to vehicle.
5. Condenser Failure
The condenser is the main component of the air conditioning system that provides the cool air. If the condenser is dirty or damaged, the air conditioner will not give out cold air.
6. Clogged Cabin Filter
A cabin air filter is responsible for filtering the air that enters the vehicle’s air conditioning system. The filter catches all the dust and impurities that enter the passenger compartment and can, therefore, become clogged over time. In addition, a clogged cabin air filter also leads to a deterioration in the cooling of the air conditioning system. It is recommended to check and clean the cabin air filter frequently. If you want to know more, you can read our article Why should I replace my Cabin Air filter.
How to Recharge your Car’s AC?
As mentioned before, recharging the air conditioner means adding additional refrigerant to the AC system so that it starts to blow cold air again. The AC recharging procedure can be done at home as well and we will discuss how you can do it. There are some rules in some countries that will make you unavailable to buy the refrigerant as a personal person. In this cases, you have to leave the AC system to a workshop to do the job for you. If you can buy it, you can follow the guide down below.
As already mentioned, refilling the air conditioning system means adding additional refrigerant to the AC system so that it blows cold air out again. The process of refilling the air conditioning system can be done at home and we will discuss how you can do this. In some countries, there are laws that make it impossible for you to buy the refrigerant as a private person. In these cases, you must get a workshop to fix the problem for you. If you can buy it, though, you can follow the guide below.
• Meat Thermometer
• Refrigerant Dispenser
• Goggles and Gloves
Step 1: Turn on the AC
The first step is to start the engine and switch on the AC system to the maximum.
Step 2: Check the Compressor
The next step is to determine if the AC compressor is on. The compressor has a clutch at its end that rotates with an accessory belt when the AC is at maximum. If the clutch moves well, the problem is only with low refrigerant content. However, if the clutch does not rotate, either something is wrong with the wiring or the compressor has failed.
Step 3: Check the Pressure
Locate the low-pressure side pressure port located on the left side of the engine compartment, marked with the letter “L”. If you cannot find it, look at the back of the engine and you’ll see two aluminum pipes coming from the firewall. Follow the larger pipe and you will locate the low-pressure side pressure port.
Step 4: Attach the Dispenser Hose
Simply place the opening of the dispenser hose on the port opening and press it down until you hear a clicking sound. Make sure that the dispenser is securely attached so that no air will enter the port. Press the trigger to transfer the refrigerant, but do not press too hard, otherwise the refrigerant may escape into the atmosphere.
Step 5: Restart the Engine
Restart the engine and set the air conditioning to the highest setting. Monitor it by inspecting the gauge and checking that it locks into place. As soon as the compressor is on, watch the low-side pressure indicator. If the reading is below 40 psi, the AC system is not fully charged.
Step 6: Transfer the Refrigerant
Press the trigger of the dispenser for about 5 to 10 seconds to add the refrigerant. Continue checking the pressure gauge to confirm that you are not overfilling. The ideal pressure is 40 psi.
Step 7: Check the Cabin Temperature
Once the refrigerant is filled, go inside the car and record the temperature with the thermometer located in one of the AC ventilation holes. An ideal AC system should blow cold air, which is about 28 degrees.
Car AC System Replacement Cost
The average cost of replacing the auto-compressor for the AC is between $600 and $1100, the compressor itself costs about $700, while the rest is labor. There are also many other different tools in an air conditioner that can be a bit expensive. If the air conditioning system only needs refilling, the cost can range from $100 to $300, depending on whether you do it yourself at home or have someone else do it for you.
Do you have any other AC related questions? Comment down below and I will answer your questions as soon as possible. If you have any other car questions you are welcome to ask them at our homepage.
Hello I’m Magnus, the owner and the writer of this website. I have been working with cars since I was 16 and I’m specialized with in-depth Automotive diagnostics. Also been driving drifting for the last 6 years. I’m here to give you answers to all your automotive questions and I hope that you enjoy our content.