Q:

How can you tell if you have a faulty auto air conditioner clutch?

A:

Quick Answer

The symptoms of a faulty air conditioner compressor clutch include a lack of cold air, air that is not as cold as it used to be, or air that starts cool but gets warm. If the compressor clutch fails to engage with the compressor, the compressor cannot maintain the appropriate pressure, and the result is hot air blowing through the vents of your vehicle’s air conditioning system.

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Full Answer

The job of the air conditioner compressor clutch is to turn the air conditioning system on and off, making it an essential part of the system. The clutch is an electromagnetic part that uses a magnetic field to engage the system. When the compressor clutch fails, the compressor cannot attach to the clutch plate, so the system cannot operate appropriately or may not even work at all.

The make and model of the vehicle determines the cost of replacing the air conditioner compressor clutch. The part runs between $75 and $250, although sometimes the problem is also in the compressor, which may run from $600 to $1,000. Rebuilt compressors cost less. These costs do not include the labor charged for installation. With labor included, the total for the repair may run from $1,500 to $2,000, as of 2015.

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