These days, driving around Southern California without air conditioning can be very unpleasant. Being stuck in traffic on a hot day without it can even be dangerous. If your body’s core temperature reaches 104 F, you can suffer from Heat Stroke. If the A/C in your car has stopped working, it’s important for your health and comfort to get it fixed. There may be several reasons why the A/C System in your Japanese Import has stopped working. Common Auto A/C problems are leaking refrigerant, a blocked condenser, a broken compressor, faulty cooling fans, and electrical issues. Troubleshooting some of these problems on your own can be difficult and may require scheduling an Auto A/C Service with a qualified service center.
Common Auto A/C Problems
When your vehicle’s A/C system starts blowing warm air, only works intermittently, or stops working altogether, there may be more than one issue going on. The A/C System has 3 main parts (condenser, compressor, evaporator) and a handful of secondary components. However, the way they all work together is fairly complex. Some of these parts can be repaired, and some of them need to be replaced when they fail. Here are some of the common A/C problems, and how to spot them.
The A/C system is a closed system under pressure. So you can’t check the level of refrigerant like you can check your oil or coolant levels. With this being said, leaking refrigerant is the #1 reason for your vehicle’s A/C to stop working. Having low refrigerant can cause damage to the other A/C components. Therefore, repairing all leaks is key to avoiding extensive and expensive A/C repairs. Leaks can occur at any of the hoses or connections between the various components. A technician usually uses a UV A/C leak detection kit to narrow down the likely culprits of the leak and can then suggest the appropriate repairs.
The A/C condenser looks and performs much like the radiator in your vehicle. It is usually mounted in front of or near the radiator, behind the front grill. Its purpose is to cool the hot refrigerant using the air flowing across the tubes. If the tubes are blocked by road debris, excess dirt, or is damaged in any way, it can be why the A/C is blowing warm or hot air. Excess debris can be cleaned away, but any damage to the condenser (causing refrigerant to leak) cannot be repaired and will require the part to be replaced.
The compressor’s main function is to keep the refrigerant moving through the A/C system, like a pump. It consists of several moving parts that are subject to wear. The seals can fail causing refrigerant leaks, the clutch can go bad, and any number of switches or fuses can blow. Thoroughly testing the compressor for issues is the only way to know if the A/C problem is one (or more) of these parts. Depending on the result of the tests, repairs or replacement may be needed.
Faulty Cooling Fans
Cooling fans work with the condenser, helping to cool it down. If the fans look good, but are not working properly, there may be electrical issues or a blown fuse. If the fans have become damaged from road debris or a fender-bender, replacing them is usually the best option.
Electrical issues can be difficult to diagnose. Start with a visual inspection of all the wiring and plugs in the system. Repair or replace any damaged wires and connections as needed. Check all the fuses associated with the A/C system (this info can be found in the owner’s manual). If you still suspect the problem may be electrical, a diagnostic A/C Service may be able to track down the issue for you.
Cabin Air Filter
The cabin air filter removes dust, pollen, and other air-born pollutants before they reach the interior. In Addition, the filter cleans the air in the HVAC system, and is often found behind the vehicle’s glove box. If the inside of your car has an unpleasant odor, or if your vents don’t blow as hard as they used to, it may be time to replace the cabin air filter.
Japanese Import Auto A/C Service
TaylorCo Japanese Auto Service is an AAA approved auto repair shop with ASE certified technicians, located in Pomona, CA. We perform maintenance and repair services on all Japanese makes and models, including Nissan, Honda, and Toyota. Extended warranty work accepted. You can count on us for an honest diagnosis of your vehicle’s A/C problems and receive reliable repairs and replacements with quality parts.
Schedule an Auto A/C Service
Contact us at (909) 971-3422 or visit us online to schedule your Japanese auto A/C diagnostic service appointment.