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Air Conditioning Miracle - long
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Posted by JonnyT (more from JonnyT) on Wed, 20 May 2009 22:01:45 Share Post by Email
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I experienced an Air Conditioning Miracle today and thought I'd share. It's just starting to get warm enough to need AC in the mountains of Utah (note I have a Vader-Black on Black Aero), so this problem escalated to the top of my priority list.

I checked high and low sides with my old manifold set and found that they were the same, confirming that the compressor wasn't starting, but they did have pressure, that confirmed that I didn't have a leak, and that the refrigerant was probably at the correct level.

So under the car I went and looked at the compressor - clean as a whistle, and I was able to spin the bolt in front of the compressor, confirming that the compressor hadn't seized. I then notice that there were 3 rivet-like connections from the front portion of the clutch to another clutch plate that had been become disconnected.

I looked into purchasing a clutch only for the compressor, but wasn't very cheap. I found a compressor at a local junkyard for $75. I took off the front piece of the clutch plate, and replaced the one on the car (note-this does NOT require the removal of the serpentine belt!). It was a little tricky getting the bolt on and tight, but I finally got it on.

Time for the moment of truth - turned the car over and put the ACC to Lo and sure enough, the clutch engaged and I have super-cold AC!!!

I just wanted to pass this on as an additional troubleshooting measure before purchasing a $500 compressor. It's too bad the dealer doesn't just sell the portion of the clutch I needed, but remember there are junkyards out there! Now what to do with a compressor that's partly disassembled :)

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