The air conditioning unit in your vehicle operates similarly to a refrigerator. Your vehicle’s air conditioning unit is designed to move heat from the inside of your car to outside of it.
Your vehicle’s air conditioning unit has six major components:
When you start your vehicle’s air conditioning system, the compressor works by putting the refrigerant under pressure, sending it to the condensing coils, which are generally in front of your vehicle’s radiator. The condenser expels hot air to outside the car, cooling the air within the vehicle. When this happens, the refrigerant is cooled, and it changes form a gas to a liquid, which then passes through the expansion valve and to the evaporator.
Once the evaporator receives the liquid-state refrigerant, it loses pressure and cools the remaining liquid. The vehicle’s blower moves air across the evaporator and into the vehicle’s interior. If you keep your air conditioning unit turned on, the refrigerant goes through this cycle continuously.
If any of these components is damaged, it can turn your cool car into a furnace during the summer months. Your vehicle’s air conditioning issue could be as simple as topping off refrigerant to replacing a valve. When your air conditioning unit is not working as it should, bring your vehicle to Best Used Tires and Auto Care. One of our trained air conditioning specialists will inspect your car’s air conditioner, all lines, the evaporator and the compressor for leaks and wear.
Typically, no, but some vehicles have Driver Information Centers (DIC) that may display the status of many vehicle systems. Refer to your Owner’s Manual for more information.
There are several reasons an A/C system can lose its cool. Bring your ride to us as soon as you start noticing this symptom, it could mean the difference between needing a small repair, or worse, a large one. Here’s what can cause your cold air to lose its cool.
The lack of precious cold air could be caused by:
Age and moisture. Plain and simple. Rubber seals and hoses can also lose their elasticity over time and breakdown allowing Freon to escape and moisture to enter your vehicle’s A/C system. Moisture is the kiss of death for your A/C system, mixing with refrigerant and creating a system destroying corrosive acid.
Quick fact: If moisture is present, it could damage your accumulator, receiver or drier. Remember, these devices are responsible for removing moisture from the A/C system and will eventually stop functioning once they are exposed to an open system (leak or crack).
Sounds like you have an odorific problem on your hands. There are a few issues that may be causing this smell.
Potential causes of nasty “gym locker” odors:
Dirty and old air cabin filter.
Moldy evaporator case. A problem for many vehicles when water sits in the evaporator case because the case’s drain is blocked. Mold will accumulate.