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Five Signs You've Got Air Conditioner Trouble

Five Signs You've Got
Air Conditioner Trouble

Whether you’re headed to work or on a cross-country road trip, your vehicle’s air conditioning makes any warm weather drive much more comfortable. Alternatively, if your A/C system stops properly functioning, it doesn’t take long to feel the heat. Between excessive sweating, dehydration, and general discomfort, a broken air conditioner can make a normal drive completely unbearable.

But you don’t have to go around driving in pools of your own sweat—avoiding the inconvenience of a broken A/C is as simple as looking out for warning signs. If you notice any of the following, make a service appointment at Pep Boys so we can help you keep your cool.

Air Conditioner Warning Signs

Five Auto AC Warning Signs

1. Air conditioning blows hot air

The most obvious symptom of a broken air conditioning is when it no longer blows cool, crisp air from the vents, and instead blows warm or hot air. This problem may be accompanied or preceded by the symptoms listed below, some of which may not even be discernible to the naked eye. If your air conditioning still blows cool air, but it’s not as cool as you remember it being, your problem may be as simple as needing to have the system recharged with new refrigerant. The friendly and professional technicians at your local Pep Boys are standing by to help you keep your air conditioning system working so you can stay cool on the road.

2. Water inside the vehicle

Part of the air conditioner’s job is to dehumidify the air in your vehicle. The system pulls moisture out of the cabin air and then drains it outside of your vehicle in the form of water. Water inside of your vehicle is a good indication you need to have your air conditioning system looked at by a professional.

If you run your vehicle’s air conditioner, and it is functioning properly, you will probably see water drip underneath your car after parking it. If the drain or a hose associated with the system becomes clogged, the water could back up and drain directly into the interior of your vehicle. If this happens, you will most likely see water stains and/or puddles on the floorboard underneath the dashboard.

3. Strange noises

When you turn on your air conditioner, all you should hear is the fan, otherwise known as the blower. If you hear a banging sound or rattling noise, you should have your system checked out as soon as possible.

The cause of the noise could be any number of things. Debris like leaves, twigs, mouse nests, and trash sometimes gets lodged in the blower motor. The condenser might be worn out and close to breaking, or the compressor’s belt could be on its last legs.

4. Unpleasant odors

You should not smell anything out of the ordinary when you run your air conditioning. If you switch it on and smell a mildew-like odor, mold could be growing inside your vehicle’s air conditioning system. While this isn’t good for the system, it’s worse for your health. Breathing in impure air could trigger allergic reactions or even exacerbate existing or underlying respiratory illnesses.

5. Leaking refrigerant

Refrigerant is a gas the air conditioner uses to produce cold air. Without refrigerant, the air conditioner will not churn out the cool air you have come to expect when driving in the summer heat.

A refrigerant leak is dissimilar to other fluid leaks. Upon exposure to air, the refrigerant evaporates, thus making diagnosis of a leak a somewhat complicated matter.

A job best left to the professionals

Diagnosing, servicing, or repairing your air conditioning is best left to the professionals at Pep Boys, who are equipped to deal with all your air conditioning system’s components, especially the refrigerant. Even if you enjoy doing most of your automotive maintenance yourself, air conditioning is specialized enough to require professional attention.