Q:

How do you troubleshoot a vehicle's AC system?

A:

Quick Answer

Troubleshoot a vehicle's air conditioning system by identifying the symptom, such as weak airflow or failure to produce cold air, and trace it back to the corresponding component. Many issues involve the compressor, which manages the flow of air into the system, though the problem may also be the result of a faulty hose or radiator.

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Full Answer

Begin by turning on the car and the air conditioning system, then turning the fan to high and setting the temperature as cold as possible. If the system has no or weak air flow, it may be a problem with the compressor or the hoses. Check the compressor to ensure that it is running as well as the hoses for loose connections or leaks due to tears or ruptures. The issue may also stem from mold blocking the air moving from the compressor through the condenser.

Temperature issues can be the result of a clogged expansion valve or one of the tubes running from the condenser into the ducts. Coolant leaks also impair function, as these make the condenser and other systems unable to properly cool the air at all. Blown or defective fuses for the system may prevent the condenser from receiving power.

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