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Discussion Starter #1
My AC is not blowing cold air. I had an ac compressor replaced under warrenty a few years ago, which the dealer told me wasn't the first they had replaced. My car was at the body shop for 4 months after I hit a deer and on the way home I heard the same pop from the rear that I heard the last time along with the wrench light coming on. It seemed to still be blowing some cold air so I was hoping for the best and maybe it wasn't blowing much as it was cold outside. However I took the car on a road trip to SC this week and when I turned it to the vents only all it did was blow hot air.

So it looks like I'm looking at replacing the compressor or at least the compressor clutch again. My car had ~15000 miles when this second compressor went and I need to double check on it but the last one was probably around the 10,000 mile mark. Since these units are not cheap, has anyone an idea what's causing it. Was the car sitting for the 4 months at the shop to blame? It seems a bit ridiculous that a part like this, especially a Toyota/Denso part would fail so quickly.

Thoughts?
 

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I doubt it is the compressors fault, even though it is what died

Hit a deer?
damage to condensor?
lines?
 

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Compressors will die from lack of lubrication, which a leak in the A/C system can cause. Usually the trinary switch will prevent that though, as the pressures will be off enough to prevent the clutch from engaging the compressor. I think on our cars, if there's an issue that's preventing the compressor from coming on, there should be a code/CEL present.

The compressor and clutch might be fine; I'd check the system for leaks first, fix any found, and then recharge the system to see if the compressor will come back on.

If it turns out the comp is bad, since you might be out of warranty now, it probably doesn't make sense to use the Lotus-branded Denso compressor/clutch, as it's astronomically priced. You can use the Toyota one at a significant discount.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I doubt it is the compressors fault, even though it is what died

Hit a deer?
damage to condensor?
lines?
I don't think it has anything to so with the accident as it was relatively light and the damage was cosmetic to the front left. I'm just curious if the car sitting unused for so long caused a problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #6

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Discussion Starter #7
Compressors will die from lack of lubrication, which a leak in the A/C system can cause. Usually the trinary switch will prevent that though, as the pressures will be off enough to prevent the clutch from engaging the compressor. I think on our cars, if there's an issue that's preventing the compressor from coming on, there should be a code/CEL present.

The compressor and clutch might be fine; I'd check the system for leaks first, fix any found, and then recharge the system to see if the compressor will come back on.

If it turns out the comp is bad, since you might be out of warranty now, it probably doesn't make sense to use the Lotus-branded Denso compressor/clutch, as it's astronomically priced. You can use the Toyota one at a significant discount.
@agentdr8 thanks for this. Do you think it sitting for 4 months had a hand in it? The car did throw the cel which it did the first time also when under warrenty. The first time the light kept coming on but this time it stayed off once I cleared it. The tech last time stated as much and blamed the compressor clutch but replaced both as it was under warrenty.

I am planning on getting the cheaper alternative but just can't believe it happened again with a Toyota part. I'm trying to work out what caused it (it's not like a lot of Camrys are blowing compressors/units) as I don't want to do it a third time. I'm just annoyed that it happened a second time and it's not like its happening a lot.

I'll have the mechanic at work check for leaks or any other issues before I start taking it apart.
 

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Sitting for 4 months shouldn't cause any issues, as the A/C system is entirely a closed loop. But even a microscopic leak can let all the refrigerant out, which also helps carry the PAG oil. But the clutch should never engage if the system is low on refrigerant, so that likely isn't the problem.

If the shop didn't vacuum down the system thoroughly, there could have been moisture present, which mixed with refrigerant and oil causes various acids, that results in sludge, and can cause the compressor to seize. Also, if they had the system open to atmosphere for any amount of time, they should have replaced the drier/accumulator, as it has a finite amount of desiccant in it, and once it's absorbed as much moisture as it can, it no longer works.

A blockage at the expansion valve can also cause compressor failure and inefficient cooling. Getting to it in our cars is a pain, as it's attached to the evaporator, which is in the HVAC assembly under the clam. Some A/C shops can do a complete closed-loop flush using solvents, but it's recommended to not flush with the expansion valve installed.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Sitting for 4 months shouldn't cause any issues, as the A/C system is entirely a closed loop. But even a microscopic leak can let all the refrigerant out, which also helps carry the PAG oil. But the clutch should never engage if the system is low on refrigerant, so that likely isn't the problem.

If the shop didn't vacuum down the system thoroughly, there could have been moisture present, which mixed with refrigerant and oil causes various acids, that results in sludge, and can cause the compressor to seize. Also, if they had the system open to atmosphere for any amount of time, they should have replaced the drier/accumulator, as it has a finite amount of desiccant in it, and once it's absorbed as much moisture as it can, it no longer works.

A blockage at the expansion valve can also cause compressor failure and inefficient cooling. Getting to it in our cars is a pain, as it's attached to the evaporator, which is in the HVAC assembly under the clam. Some A/C shops can do a complete closed-loop flush using solvents, but it's recommended to not flush with the expansion valve installed.
Thanks! the repair was to the bodywork but the front was replaced so maybe there was some damage to the condenser or something was disconnected. I hadn't thought about that before. I'll start with checking the refrigerant this week and go from there. Hopefully its a leak and a simple fix. Thanks!
 
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