Signs Your Car’s Air Compressor Needs Replacing

The air conditioning in your vehicle is critical during hot weather to ensure that you, your passengers and your items are not overheated while riding in the cabin. When it starts to malfunction, the culprit is usually the air compressor or related belts and there are two main signs that it needs to be fixed, loud knocking sounds or warm air when you turn the A/C on.

Knocks When A/C Is Running

Knocks while the A/C is on, or a loud squealing when you try to turn it on, are common sounds from a failing system. If you hear a squeal, watch the compressor in action to see if the belt snaps or fails to move, or if the pulley is seized. The first two can indicate that the belt is too loose and needs to be replaced while a seized pulley means that you need a new compressor. Knocking sounds means that the compressor is failing, and its vanes are sending powdery dust through the rest of your system. In this case, shut off the A/C until you can get car care near Lake Stevens WA for a replacement, so your filters are not clogged.

Air Conditioning Not Cold

Sometimes you can hear knocking or squealing while the air is still getting cold. Other times, there will be no noise from the compressor or related parts, but the A/C is not producing cold air. This is usually a sign that you have a coolant leak. You can take your car to a mechanic to find the leak, or purchase test kits to do it yourself. If there is a leak between the compressor and pulley or in the compressor case, the unit needs replacement.

The most obvious sign that the A/C compressor in your vehicle needs to be replaced is that it stops producing cold air but knocking or squealing can mean that it is not working properly. When the A/C goes out due to malfunctioning parts, it can be uncomfortable for passengers and harmful for the rest of the system.