General Maintenance & Repairs - a/c compressor




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cajunss
01-19-2012, 06:25 AM
My clutch on the a/c compressor is going out. Today it started to make a noise like the bearing is going out. It's only noisy when the clutch is disengaged when I have the AC on everything is ok with no noise. How hard is it to replace and what is all needed?


DarkFox118
01-19-2012, 07:09 AM
you'll need a system that reclaims the refrigerant to be "legal."

after you drain the system of refrigerant, on a lift, it's no big deal to take the compressor off, on the ground it may be a bit harder.

don't leave the system exposed to the atmosphere for a long time as it can damage other components, wait until you have the new compressor ready to go on before you take the old one off.

after the new one is on, you just need to re-pressurize the system and all should be fine.

I don't believe the a/c compressor clutch is considered serviceable on the car, that's kind of like a bearing in the alternator.. they replace the whole unit, it's more cost effective.

it wouldn't be a horrible idea to put on new hoses and a new dryer, but it's not NECESSARY..

DAVE00
01-19-2012, 07:32 AM
My clutch on the a/c compressor is going out. Today it started to make a noise like the bearing is going out. It's only noisy when the clutch is disengaged when I have the AC on everything is ok with no noise. How hard is it to replace and what is all needed?

It's not hard as I've done this on several cars now including the my 95' T/A. Here is what you need:

Compressor
Accum/Dryer (this should really be changed anytime you open the system up)
PAG Oil (parts store will know the number)
Can of flush (always want the flush the system out to get the old oil and any contaminants out)
Vaccum Pump (can rent one from Autozone) or buy one from Harbor Freight. Two styles - one runs off compressor or one is a plug in pump. Personally I think the plug in pump pulls a better vaccum as I have both.
Set of Hi/Lo side guages
New R134a

Make sure you blow out all the lines thoroughly (to get the flush out) before you install everything. Also, DO NOT open up the new dryer until you are ready to bolt it up as it has decadent inside that absorbes moisture in the system. Our humid Houston air can ruin one real quick. Pull a good vaccum on the system once everything is installed and let it sit to check for leaks. Once sure then charge and refil the system. Should take you an afternoon and it's really not that hard.


LS1121
01-19-2012, 11:14 AM
Try a New Belt first,you are going to need one anyway. I thought my clutch was bad and it ended up being just the belt.

cajunss
01-19-2012, 11:18 AM
Thanks guys, I will try replacing the belt first. LS1121 was yours doing the same thing?

1 FMF
01-19-2012, 11:21 AM
in addition, if you do the work yourself or even if a shop does it, once the system is (preferably) evacuated of refrigerant and you start removing components, pull the orifice tube out and inspect. if it's clean then that's a good sign the system is in good working order. If it's clogged or shows signs of debris, then go from there inspecting for other problems. you can go by the condition of the orifice tube as to how well you need to flush the system, and it's been said that if you know the system is in bad shape that you should replace the condenser rather than flush it because condenser internally is small and a flush many times won't clean it out. If the AC system has 5 or more years on it then definitely replace the accumulator. Generally whenever the system is opened up the accumulator should be replaced, but realistically if the system got serviced say last year and the accumulator is only a year old then you can probably get away with reusing it.

also get an o-ring kit and replace the o-rings and the valves on the high & low side service ports, that a common point of system leakage. You can only service these when the system is evacuated and given the total cost of the procedure, don't forget this, the o-rings and new valves are less than $10.

cajunss
01-19-2012, 03:22 PM
I did not think that our cars had an orifice tube I though they were valves?

DAVE00
01-19-2012, 03:36 PM
I did not think that our cars had an orifice tube I though they were valves?

I know the LT cars (like mine) have the TXV (thermal expansion valve) but I'm not sure about the LS cars. It's real easy to figure out tho. Look for the two lines running to the firewall on the passenger side and if they connect to an aluminum block with a disk on top you have a TXV and don't have to worry about replacing it. Just make sure you pull it as well when you are flushing the lines.

LS1121
01-19-2012, 04:49 PM
Thanks guys, I will try replacing the belt first. LS1121 was yours doing the same thing?

Yes it was doing the same thing, that's why i suggested to try the belt first. Maybe yes and maybe no but the belt is a hella of a lot cheaper and you will need it anyhow.

cajunss
01-19-2012, 06:55 PM
Ok, Thanks for all the info guys. I will try the belt first. Then take it from there. Will do Saturday morning. Crossing fingers its just the belt.

cajunss
01-20-2012, 06:29 PM
well I replaced the belts and still doing the same thing so it must be the compressor. What is a good brand to go with? The one in there now is a Delphi.

LS1121
01-20-2012, 06:33 PM
I always go with GM they make about the best.

DAVE00
01-20-2012, 08:02 PM
well I replaced the belts and still doing the same thing so it must be the compressor. What is a good brand to go with? The one in there now is a Delphi.

Delphi is the stock GM part and honestly it's the best, HOWEVER it's wayyyyy over priced and IMHO not worth the money. For the two vehicles I've done AC's on I've used the "Factory Air" brand from Advance Auto parts and have had good luck with them. They now carry the "Tough One" brand and they should be good as well. With all the coupon codes online you can get one pretty cheap locally and they also have a 2 year warranty for the new (not rebuilt) units. DO NOT get a rebuilt as for a few dollars more you get a new one and they tend to have less issues and carry a greater warranty.

cajunss
01-20-2012, 09:51 PM
How did you recover the refrigerant?

DAVE00
01-21-2012, 09:41 AM
How did you recover the refrigerant?

Didn't have to worry as most had leaked out over time, but on my wife's suburban I took it to a local shop/mechanic and they recovered it for me. Then I pulled a vac on the system and charged it myself once all the parts were installed.

cajunss
01-21-2012, 11:15 AM
I found a brand new Delphi CS0134 for around $300.00. I also was able to find a vacuum pump for $70,Manifold Gauge Set for $15 . When you bought your truck to get it discharge did you have to bring them an empty tank or something to put it in? I called the steelership just to see what they charge to replace it man they wanted $1322 and that was just replacing the compressor and discharge/recharge.Thats crazy. I think I will just try to do this my self. Buy the compressor,accumulator,replacement rings,Orifice Tube if I need one. I think I have some time as it works with no issue while its turned on so that will give me some time to get everything I need.

cajunss
01-28-2012, 09:11 PM
Still waiting on a few parts to come in. Once I get everything I been seraching to find out how much Pag oil does the system take and also the amount of freon.

cajunss
01-28-2012, 09:24 PM
Just found it. 9oz of Pag oil and 24oz of 134a.
Here is a link to the info if anyone needs it
http://napabeltshose.com/downloads/download_common.cfm?file=NapaCapacityGuide2-8-05.pdf&folder=news&view=napa_hc&location_id=1078

AlexSmith
01-29-2012, 07:33 PM
Mine is squealing on my 01 TA conv. I replaced every both of the plastic tensioner pulleys with metal ones and put a new main belt tensioner trying to shut the noise up. I went to O'Reillys today and they do not sell the a/c clutch by itself, but they do sell the bearings to service it. $16.99 for the 90 day warranty and $32.99 for the 1 year warranty. I need a belt anyway, so I will try that prior to buying the bearing.