Air conditioning is crucial during the sweltering heat in the summer, whether in your home or car. But auto AC is more than just comfort since it’s a safety factor too. For instance, when you stay in a hot car without AC, even for a short amount of time, you may feel dehydrated and irritable, especially if you are caught in traffic. So ensure that the car AC is in perfect working conditions all the time.
Luckily, you can avoid getting caught in the summer heat by looking out for air conditioning repair signs lurking behind your dashboard. If you have any of these problems, have your local mechanic check, service, and repair your AC as necessary.
Discover five signs your auto AC needs repair.
1. Weak Airflow
Does the AC take longer than usual to cool your car? If this is the case, the sign could mean that you have debris buildup in the fan or that cool air does not reach the air vents properly. In addition, blocked air inlets, either at the passenger side footwell or at the base of the windshield, can severely hamper airflow. Such blockages will need clearing to keep your AC working at maximum performance.
Weak airflow could also result from an open or damaged AC seal, limiting the amount of cold air in the cabin. Get your car AC checked out to prevent compromising the whole AC system due to weak airflow.
2. Unusual Smells
Unpleasant odors from the dash vents when your air conditioning system is in use usually indicate a troubling issue if left unchecked. A sudden pungent odor can indicate a mold or mildew problem due to bacteria buildup on your AC’s evaporator.
A foul vinegar smell usually results from leaking battery acid or ozone emissions. Excessive dust or a misaligned pulley may cause a burning rubber smell. Such strange smells in your car are not only unpleasant, but some may also be dangerous as they can cause health complications such as allergies.
3. Wet Spots on Floor Mats
Damp patches on your floor mats or underneath the dashboard usually indicate an air conditioning leak. However, persistent damp spots can be a serious warning sign of a clogged AC pipe and can damage other car components without proper and timely repairs.
If damp patches increase in amount or frequency, schedule a car service or repair immediately to prevent mold or mildew growth.
4. Strange Noises
Your car’s AC should run silently at all times, without any strange noises. However, rattling, banging, clicking, and other unusual sounds during the normal operation of your car are common symptoms of an AC unit that needs repair. The different noises are as follows:
- Rattling noise. The AC compressor is failing.
- Clicking or squealing noise. A foreign object is stuck in your blower motor.
- Vibrating noises. Your AC system hose comes into contact with a part of the engine.
- Budding noise. The system is overcharged with refrigerant and could damage system components if left unchecked.
While your AC is not completely noise-free, unusual sounds that weren’t there before signal a potential problem in the making and call for immediate AC repairs to save you time and money.
5. Change in Blown Air
When your air conditioning starts to blow out cold air but then suddenly switches to warm air, this sign could mean your expansion valve is failing. A malfunctioning expansion valve restricts refrigerant flow, resulting in your AC blowing warm air.
Another reason you might feel like your AC is playing tricks on you is a faulty compressor clutch, one of the most crucial parts of your car’s AC system. The compressor clutch continuously cycles on and off and is subject to wear and tear with continued use.
A perfectly auto AC system makes your drives more comfortable. However, regular car AC service and maintenance are essential to keeping your AC in the best condition. At White’s Automotive Center, we provide reliable AC maintenance and repairs to guarantee unit efficiency. Book an appointment today to have a certified technician look at your auto AC unit.