Q: The summer is here, and after months of sitting of idle, my air conditioner is not blowing any cold air, why?!
-Too Hot To Handle in Victoria
A: Ok, first of all, why was your air conditioner not in use during the winter? Didn’t you read our rousing exposé on the merits of conditioning the hot air from your vehicle’s heater during the winter months? If you missed it I can wait for a moment while you get caught up to speed.
….oh, you’re back! Now, to answer your question, 90% of the time when the air condition is not blowing cold air it is because the refrigerant in the system has been slowly leaking out and it needs a recharge. If a vehicle comes in that is completely empty of refrigerant we will run a leak test and check the system pressure to see if we can find the leak. We don’t want to fill you up so it can leak out again. Finding the leak can be tricky, especially if it is a very slow leak, so we add an ultraviolet dye to the coolant so we can see the leak under special flashlight. Very sic-fi!
There are recharge kits available that you can use to recharge your air conditioning unit on your own but we have one word of warning about them. The kits you can purchase are one size fits all, but each cooling system requires a specific about of refrigerant by weight. If you add too much you can stress and break the compressor which makes for a more expensive repair than the relatively inexpensive A/C system recharge.
What happens the other 10% of the time, you ask? It would be a failure of other A/C components. It could be something as simple as a fuse or relay all the way to a breakdown inside the compressor. No compressor, no cold air, and your ice cream melts everywhere!
Need some help with your A/C unit? Give us a shout and we can set you up with an appointment right away.
- Andrew Kralt