AC not cooling - likely compressor, could it just be clutch?

Discussion in 'Engine & Drivetrain' started by DonnieBrasco, May 11, 2018.

  1. DonnieBrasco

    DonnieBrasco Full Access Member

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    My AC is not cooling. I got a can of refrigerant to recharge it, but then I noticed that the compressor doesn't seem to be kicking on.

    My questions are...

    (1) How do I confirm if the compressor is totally dead?

    (2) Is it possible to replace the clutch only or is it an all or nothing type deal?

    I'm just trying to find out if I just need to replace the whole compressor, or if just the clutch is bad and if it's possible to just replace that? Thanks.
     
  2. Doubeleive

    Doubeleive Elite Member Supporting Member

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    cheapest method unless you got a buddy with a gauge is just buy the refill with the gauge and see what the pressure reads. go from there. 99% of the time either the refrigerant leaked out or the compressor kicked the bucket which will then usually either kick the belt off or will make horrible noises like it is being raped inside by a 50lb metal gorilla.
     
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  3. DonnieBrasco

    DonnieBrasco Full Access Member

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    So the belt is still on the compressor just fine. And it's not making any crazy noises. But if I connect the can, and it says it's empty, and then I recharge it (with likely a full can), and the compressor still won't turn on, didn't I just waste a whole can? Because I will have to flush/drain the system before replacing the compressor, correct? Thanks dude.
     
  4. Randy Whistler

    Randy Whistler Member

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    Yes. No. Maybe. Sorry, but there's no easy way other than do what you're doing. Keep in mind, even if the can is empty, the system may have been empty and might need more than one can to charge up. The compressor will not run until it reaches a certain PSI internally, and you might have to dump more in to satisfy it. I had a land yacht years ago that had a similar problem. The dealership wanted $800 to fix it. I went to WallyWorld, invested in a hose/gauge set and a couple of cans of Freon - worked until I traded it in.

    And, yes, if you open the system for any reason, you'll have to vacuum pump it before refilling, after you've fixed whatever the issue might be.
     
  5. DonnieBrasco

    DonnieBrasco Full Access Member

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    Ok, this is great to know. I did not realize that it wouldn't run if it's dead ass empty. I'll recharge it this weekend and see if I can get it cooling. Huge thanks.
     
  6. Doubeleive

    Doubeleive Elite Member Supporting Member

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    ya it might take a couple cans, it has have a specific amount of pressure before it will kick on and it still needs to be full for best performance
     
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  7. Doubeleive

    Doubeleive Elite Member Supporting Member

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    and if it is not filling up then it's pissing out somewhere in which case you will need to get the refrigerant with leak detection so you can find out where the hole is or what seal is bad
     
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  8. M1Gunner

    M1Gunner Full Access Member

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    Definitely would’ve started by checking the fuse, power/ground to the connector at the compressor. Or even jumping the relay that powers the compressor to see if it kicks on...

    If it was leaking out it would’ve been kicking in and off the compressor noticeably more and more as the refridgerant leaked out.
     
  9. swathdiver

    swathdiver Full Access Member

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    I don't know about these GMT800s but he 900s can see everything about the AC through an advanced scan tool. The Tech2 can see AC codes, pressures, temperatures, and even command the compressor on and off for testing, etc.

    But without it, the can with the little gauge is the way to go for a first test. Years ago I too wanted to just replace the compressor clutch without tearing into the system but it was never possible on those old A and G body cars. Had to change the compressor and accumulator at least.
     
  10. Scottydoggs

    Scottydoggs Full Access Member

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    if its dry it leaked out, sooooo, best to either find the oiled up dirty wet spot thats on one one of the lines, or at a sensor. fix that leak, then refill it, other wise its just a waste of money for it to work for 2-3 days or less.

    if you cant find that oiled up wet spot, use a can of dye refill, at least your learning where the leak is that way. not 100% waste of money.
     

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