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I took our 2009 Traverse into an Express Lube place today for a quick "charge" of the A/C system. He hooked up his little blue/red instrument and said it's got plenty of freon. But he said the A/C compressor won't "kick in". His blue gauge showed 95 lbs of pressure and he said that should be plenty enough pressure to get the compressor to kick in. But it's not...
So to avoid the rediculous prices at the dealership, what are my options? What further tests can I perform? And how simple is the fix??
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Clarification...

Just to clarify... This is an issue that has been getting progressively worse over the last 2 years. That's why we thought it just needed more freon. Used to be the A/C would only blow warm air when we sat at idle for too long. Now it's hot air all the time and we've had a professional tell us the compressor isn't "kicking in" it all.
 

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If the compressor is not "kicking in" the first thing to check is the compressor clutch which is electric and would receive the signal from the HVAC controls and body control module to turn on. There is also a compressor clutch fuse in the panel under the hood to check.

If the fuse is okay, time to take it to a repair shop that does AC work. A local shop should be less expensive than the dealer.
 

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So what is the best way to diagnose a problem with the A/C compressor? I can't see it from the top. Do I need to look from the bottom? I've seen videos on how to use the relay box to test for electrical issues but is there something I should do first?
 

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malenurse13 said:
I took our 2009 Traverse into an Express Lube place today for a quick "charge" of the A/C system. He hooked up his little blue/red instrument and said it's got plenty of freon. But he said the A/C compressor won't "kick in". His blue gauge showed 95 lbs of pressure and he said that should be plenty enough pressure to get the compressor to kick in. But it's not...
So to avoid the rediculous prices at the dealership, what are my options? What further tests can I perform? And how simple is the fix??
You do understand freon does not evaporate, so, if freon is low, you have a leak. Your refrigerator doesn't need constant freon recharges, correct ?

You are concerned and voice your thoughts (rediculous prices at the dealership) on the high prices of a dealerships' service dept.

And yet, your user name is male nurse, which tells me you're in the health care industry.

I continue to voice my concerns at the outrageous prices of the health care folks, yet my choices are limited to either paying and continue to pay, until I'm broke ....... or take a chance and have my dogs' vet take a look at me.

You have the option of going to a "repair garage" that may or may not know beans about your specific vehicle and a/c system, but the general public does not have that option you enjoy ..... we either pay the outrageous tab in the healthcare industry or die at the curb stone.

I wonder if I would call your paycheck ridiculous.

Being from a dealership background, perhaps I'm somewhat sensitive with comments like yours, about the high cost of auto repairs, then watch you take your paycheck to a bank, in a truck.

Just sayin'
 

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Discussion Starter #6
That's a good point about "freon not evaporating."
My local auto parts store has several UV dye kits that are supposed to help find a leak in the AC system. Has anyone ever used one of these kits? Do they work??
 

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Our 2011 Traverse had a A/C leak and it took the dealer a couple of tries to get it fixed correctly....You may have a leak as well.

Ours would blow warm air out of the vents and the A/C light would blink 3 times then shut off - A/C would not blow cold.
 

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bobg1951chevy said:
You do understand freon does not evaporate, so, if freon is low, you have a leak. Your refrigerator doesn't need constant freon recharges, correct ?

You are concerned and voice your thoughts (rediculous prices at the dealership) on the high prices of a dealerships' service dept.

And yet, your user name is male nurse, which tells me you're in the health care industry.

I continue to voice my concerns at the outrageous prices of the health care folks, yet my choices are limited to either paying and continue to pay, until I'm broke ....... or take a chance and have my dogs' vet take a look at me.


You have the option of going to a "repair garage" that may or may not know beans about your specific vehicle and a/c system, but the general public does not have that option you enjoy ..... we either pay the outrageous tab in the healthcare industry or die at the curb stone.

I wonder if I would call your paycheck ridiculous.

Being from a dealership background, perhaps I'm somewhat sensitive with comments like yours, about the high cost of auto repairs, then watch you take your paycheck to a bank, in a truck.

Just sayin'
I believe your comment is out of line and getting personal. No reason for making such a statement. It is apparent the individual has little knowledge of the automotive world.

Keep the answers directed towards the questions at hand.

Making comparisons to automotive cost -vs- healthcare cost is taking this into a political minefield and is not appropriate.
 
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You do understand freon does not evaporate, so, if freon is low, you have a leak. Your refrigerator doesn't need constant freon recharges, correct ?

You are concerned and voice your thoughts (rediculous prices at the dealership) on the high prices of a dealerships' service dept.

And yet, your user name is male nurse, which tells me you're in the health care industry.

I continue to voice my concerns at the outrageous prices of the health care folks, yet my choices are limited to either paying and continue to pay, until I'm broke ....... or take a chance and have my dogs' vet take a look at me.

You have the option of going to a "repair garage" that may or may not know beans about your specific vehicle and a/c system, but the general public does not have that option you enjoy ..... we either pay the outrageous tab in the healthcare industry or die at the curb stone.

I wonder if I would call your paycheck ridiculous.

Being from a dealership background, perhaps I'm somewhat sensitive with comments like yours, about the high cost of auto repairs, then watch you take your paycheck to a bank, in a truck.

Just sayin'
Hey Bob, you are ignorant about why healthcare costs are so high. Nurses don't set the prices, they care for people. The guy was simply asking how to fix his AC issue, please keep your condescending, illiterate, uninformed rhetoric on healthcare between you and your vet. Just saying...
 

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The easiest way to determine whether or not you have a bad compressor is to reach down from the top or up from the bottom and turn the clutch by hand. Engine off of course. If the clutch spins freely then most likely you do not have a bad compressor.

If the clutch is damaged or it appears that the donut rubber melted then it could open up the door to many issues where your best bet is to have a service tech try to look at it.

One thing you did not mention is if your A/C light is blinking or is it on? if it is blinking then the vehicle is sensing something not right with the system and turning it off to save the compressor.

9 times out of 10 it is lack of charge. I know a poster said the charge will not evaporate but thats not 100% true. The refrigerant can slowly permeate the rubber lines on the A/C system.
 

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The easiest way to determine whether or not you have a bad compressor is to reach down from the top or up from the bottom and turn the clutch by hand. Engine off of course. If the clutch spins freely then most likely you do not have a bad compressor.

If the clutch is damaged or it appears that the donut rubber melted then it could open up the door to many issues where your best bet is to have a service tech try to look at it.

One thing you did not mention is if your A/C light is blinking or is it on? if it is blinking then the vehicle is sensing something not right with the system and turning it off to save the compressor.

9 times out of 10 it is lack of charge. I know a poster said the charge will not evaporate but thats not 100% true. The refrigerant can slowly permeate the rubber lines on the A/C system.
Not so sure about that. My Mazda6 is 8-1/2 yrs old and if the freon is permeating the rubber lines, it's sure not doing it very much.
 

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Bumping this old thread....after replacing 2 actuators less than a year ago, with OEM parts, I can already hear 1 grinding on the passenger side and it won't circulate air to the rear when on I click Rear and the setting is at the floor. When the setting is Rear and Front Vent, it seems to circulate air to the back just fine.

My bigger problem is that I am also seeing the 3 blinking AC light when I click the AC Button. I want to just recharge it myself as the first attempt to fix it. However, I watched a video on how to recharge the AC and it states that I should fill it when the compressor is kicked on. Can't get a good pressure reading when the compressor is NOT running. So, if my compressor won't kick in, can I still charge it?

After reading some additional threads, I am going to check the compressor and clutch when I get back home. I assume that the 3 blinking lights means the AC won't turn on which means the compressor isn't on, which is preventing me from using a can of AC Pro to refill.

Am I correct in this thinking?
 

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The reason to charge when the compressor is running is because that is when the low side is lowest (and high pressure is the highest). If the problem is the low pressure cutout because it needs a charge.....it is low enough to take freon and when enough is added the compressor will cycle.


If the pressure is too high to add gas with the compressor off it already has enough pressure to engage the compressor. With the compressor off, the low and high pressures equilibrate.......so if the equilibrated pressure is so low it triggers the low pressure cutout, it is obviously low enough to add freon with the compressor off. When enough gas is added to increase above the low limit the compressor will short cycle until enough gas is added that the low side doesn't drop below minimum pressure with the compressor running.



All depends upon what the static pressure reading is with compressor off......if low feed gas, when above the low pressure cutout (around 20 psi or so?). If around 50 psi, problem is not the low pressure cutout because the compressor should kick in.....if not likely clutch or sensor problem.........if starts and fuse blows likely a seized compressor. If over a 100 psi static too much freon or air is in the system, that why you never fill an empty system without first drawing a vacuum.
 

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You do understand freon does not evaporate, so, if freon is low, you have a leak. Your refrigerator doesn't need constant freon recharges, correct ?

You are concerned and voice your thoughts (rediculous prices at the dealership) on the high prices of a dealerships' service dept.

And yet, your user name is male nurse, which tells me you're in the health care industry.

I continue to voice my concerns at the outrageous prices of the health care folks, yet my choices are limited to either paying and continue to pay, until I'm broke ....... or take a chance and have my dogs' vet take a look at me.

You have the option of going to a "repair garage" that may or may not know beans about your specific vehicle and a/c system, but the general public does not have that option you enjoy ..... we either pay the outrageous tab in the healthcare industry or die at the curb stone.

I wonder if I would call your paycheck ridiculous.

Being from a dealership background, perhaps I'm somewhat sensitive with comments like yours, about the high cost of auto repairs, then watch you take your paycheck to a bank, in a truck.

Just sayin'
 
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