REGINA AUTO REPAIR & SERVICE technicians are well equipped to repair your vehicle and get you back on the road.
Car Air Conditioning…. Helpful tips on maintenance.
Car air conditioners were once a great luxury, but alas now a common feature on cars. While the servicing of modern air conditioning systems is best left to air conditioning technicians, you can get more enjoyment from your ac system if you know a bit about how it functions and what malfunctions you should be on the lookout for.
Car manufacturers recommend that Air Conditioning systems (AC & Climate Control) are serviced every two years, which should include cleaning the refrigerant gas and the lubricating oil, as well as carrying out a system leak test. Over time the air conditioning gases in your car will escape from the AC or Climate Control system. This is because car air conditioning systems “are” designed to leak. Car engines vibrate, piping moves and the rubber ‘O’ rings expand and contract allowing leakage. This allows the performance of the air conditioning system to gradually deteriorate. The other system components are forced to work harder in order to compensate, leading to potential catastrophic failure, which will certainly be expensive to repair.
Some vital facts on car air-conditioning systems:
Foul smells coming from the air conditioning may be caused by a buildup of bacteria.
As your car ages, or when the air conditioning systems are used infrequently, bacteria, micro-organisms, mould and fungus may start growing behind the dash panel on the evaporator causing some very unpleasant odours. Some people claim this can result in headaches and flu-like symptoms sometimes referred to as “sick car syndrome.” This can be solved by using an anti-bacterial treatment that destroys the bacteria growth and leaves your car smelling fresh again and new again.
If your car does not feel cold enough, then it may be time to recharge your system.
If you feel that your car doesn’t feel as cold as your buddies’ car, then your air-con may need servicing. The air conditioning system in your vehicle is not usually covered by most manufacturers' servicing tasks and the refrigerant gas that is used to operate the system depletes over time. On average most vehicles lose up to 15% annually. This leakage can be caused when the air conditioning is not used during the winter months thus allowing the small “O” ring seals to dry out resulting in a gradual deterioration in air-con performance. If this continues, eventually the system will not be able to function at all.
Most problems of this type can be put right fairly easily by having a leak check of your system followed by a complete refill of your refrigerant, often referred to as a re-gas.
Using your air conditioning all year round helps maintain the system.
If you run the air conditioning during winter it will help to keep the system well lubricated and leak-tight because the refrigerant actually carries the oil that lubricates the system and the compressor. It also keeps the seals and hoses moist, preventing them from drying out and cracking which leads to leaks.
Strange noises coming from the air conditioning should be checked immediately.
If your air conditioning suddenly starts making noises you haven’t heard before it’s advisable to have a qualified air conditioning specialist have a look at it. Some noises could be early symptoms of a compressor (air conditioning pump) failure. The compressor is the most expensive part on the system and if the bearings in your compressor break down or if the compressor seizes up it also means that other components can become contaminated with metal particles. A flush of the system would then be needed as well as replacement of the compressor, the receiver/drier and the expansion valve – which could lead to a big bite into your hip pocket.
Don’t worry about a pool of water forming under your car after using the A/C.
If you see a puddle of water on the ground, don’t be alarmed. This is a normal occurrence, as it is only water dripping from the air conditioning evaporator. The evaporator has a drain tube fitted to allow the condensation from the evaporator to drain away from the vehicle. So don’t be afraid that it’s some sort of leak.
Excessive moisture inside the car can be fixed easily
Sometimes the drain tube from the evaporator may become blocked or detached allowing condensation to build up inside your evaporator. If this occurs water will just build up inside your car to a point where carpets are damp or misting occurs. These problems can be solved with low-cost servicing.
Have your air conditioning serviced regularly, even if you have no visible problems.
Just as the other systems of your car need servicing regularly, the same applies to the air conditioning system. The compressor needs oil, or else it will seize up. The filter collects debris and moisture. If the filter becomes blocked, then the performance of the system will deteriorate and it can even stop working entirely (probably when you need it most!)
Normally the refrigerant gas in a car's air conditioning system has to be recharged completely within four years from the manufacture date and thereafter every two years.
Regular annual servicing of your car’s air conditioning system will guard against malfunctions. Annual maintenance will save you money in the long run and guarantee you comfort in the hottest months...so you don't have to resort to desperate measures