Can I Use a Car AC Recharge Kit If My AC Compressor is Faulty?

Car AC Recharge Kit If My AC Compressor is Faulty

Over time, every vehicle’s air conditioning will lose refrigerant gas and need to be recharged. However, if your AC compressor is faulty, using a DIY recharge kit can delay the trip to a professional by overcharging or even make the issue worse.

Typically, an ac car recharge kit includes a can of refrigerant, a hose with a quick-connect fitting and a reusable pressure gauge. The cans usually use a mixture of R134a refrigerant, compressor oil and leak stopper additive. This is fine for newer vehicles, but many classic cars built before 1994 use R12 refrigerant instead of the R134a found in most recharging kits. Mixing these different types can cause serious damage to the compressor.

Recharge kits also include a small bottle of “stop leak” compound, which is supposed to fill in small leaks. It’s important to understand that these compounds only temporarily plug leaks. They don’t fix a faulty compressor clutch or any other problems. Furthermore, the excess stop leak can gum up the system, leading to additional problems down the line. Some auto shops won’t work on a car that has been topped up with this stuff.

It’s also important to note that recharging your air conditioner yourself can lead to other issues. For example, if the system was overcharged, it may blow out the hose or even destroy the compressor. The recharging process can also reveal hidden problems, such as corrosion of the compressor clutch or other mechanical issues. In addition, the flammable refrigerant in most of these cans may be a health and safety hazard if it gets into contact with your skin or eyes.

Can I Use a Car AC Recharge Kit If My AC Compressor is Faulty?

The easiest way to tell if your AC compressor is faulty is to pop the hood and locate it. Look for a pulley that doesn’t rotate when the compressor clutch is engaged. If you see this, the compressor clutch is likely faulty and will need to be replaced.

If you can’t find a problem with the compressor, you should still take your car to a professional for an inspection and repair. A licensed mechanic will be able to visually inspect the system, run a fluorescent dye to more easily spot leaks and then repair or replace the faulty compressor clutch or other part. They will also be able to test the system with a vacuum pump to ensure it is completely sealed and working properly.

While it is tempting to save money by purchasing an ac recharge kit and doing it yourself, it’s always better to leave these repairs to a certified technician. A professional can safely handle, dispose of and store the dangerous refrigerant (Freon) used in this type of car repair. This will prevent injury to yourself or others and protect your investment in the long run. Contact us at Massey Yardley CDJR to schedule an appointment. Our expert technicians are ready to help!

Recharging the A/C in your vehicle can be a necessary part of routine maintenance, but it’s important to recognize when this is the case and not go for a cheap AC recharge from a retail outlet. The system should only be recharged when there are no visible signs of leaking or improper operation.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *