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:
- The refrigerant carries heat. In modern cars, refrigerant is a substance called R-134a. Older cars’ refrigerant is called r-12 freon, which is more expensive and difficult to find than R-134a.
- The compressor circulates and compresses refrigerant within the vehicle’s cooling system.
- Your vehicle’s condenser changes the refrigerant from gas to liquid and expels heat from the car.
- The expansion valve (sometimes called the orifice tube) is a nozzle that simultaneously drops the pressure of the refrigerant liquid, meter its flow and atomize it.
- Your vehicle’s evaporator transfers heat to the refrigerant from the air blown across it, cooling your car.
- The receiver or dryer filters your vehicle’s refrigerant and oil, removing moisture and other contaminants from them.
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 Maximum Automotive. 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.
Your cars air conditioning system has many components consisting of :
Hoses and Lines
Gaskets and Seals
Sensors and Switches
The Control unit
All of these parts work together with freon to cool your car.
Low freon is the most common cause of the AC system not working properly.
If your car is low on freon it may have a leak.
When charging the system it is very important that it is evacuated and charged properly. Over charging will damage the compressor and seals, not evacuating fully will leave air in the system and will not cool as well as it should and leave durty oil in the system that can harm the compressor. Most fast lube shops offer a/c service but do not repair any other problems with the system and if they over charge it you will have more problems. The one other reason to have a us charge your system is if there is a problem with the system that they can’t fix the a/c service you just paid for is wasted because the first thing we or any other shop needs to check is if it was charged properly. We can test using pressure gages but that only tells us the pressure not the quality or percentage of freon in the system.