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Air Con Stopped Working


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#1 catch

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Posted 20 April 2011 - 04:48 PM

As the Topic title says, I checked the fuse and the air con relay, both fine [swopped the latter with the horn relay to check it was working ] watched the promo video on Ebay scroll and play

Anyway as I'm ferrying visiting extended family around in this heatwave this week. I thought I would go to my usual mechanic and see if he had a pressure gauge, he could connect to my Air Con low pressure side. I wanted to know if it was a full lose of refrigerant, indicating a leak. And if that was the case, it would need to be treated with a stop leak product that could possibly reseal the system, prior to spending money attempting to recharge the system. The latter to me appearing to be the cheapest course of action to take.

Anyway pops round to my man's garage, but he informs me he does not have a air con adaptor gauge, as he does not do air con re gassing, he uses the garage top end of the yard as he has the gassing kit, best I go see him. So off I pop, I explain I've checked the fuse the relay bla bla .....and he pipes up it will just need re gassing. I said I hope that is the case but putting the gauge on it will prove it one way or the other.

He said, sounds like you know more about it than me, I laughed and said, nay I just watched a video on Ebay. He said leave it with me for an hour, and not wanting to appear to not trust him, and understanding he may not be able to just drop what he is on there and then to see to my motor, I agreed. So I went down the yard to my mechanics for a natter while he was working on a motor.

Anyway the man pops the motor down to me with a nice cool cabin, with the vents blowing out nice cold air. I said how much would he like, he said £40, very reasonable I thought. He then said it had been completely empty, so I would just have to see how it goes on, but it has a dye in it to trace any leaks if it does leak again...................DOH

I did not say anything, as I thought what would be the point!

Anyway if it losses all it's gas again I think I will buy THIS KIT off Ebay and attempt a reseal and re gas myself. That way even if it does not fix the problem, I'll at least have the gauge and hose kit to enable me to do my own air con gas pressure diagnostics on cars I purchase in the future.

Besides I know which connector on the air con was used to re gas the system. But first I'd like to know if anybody on the boards knew which one it was ? Because maybe if I'd asked I could have just bought the kit myself and done it. So on the Mk2 Focus is it the one just below the drivers side windscreen on the engine compartment bulkhead. Or is it the one at the front of the engine compartment just to the left of the radiator, and right of the off side headlamp unit.

I have since found out Halfords do FREE gas pressure checks :rolleyes:

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#2 catch

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Posted 22 April 2011 - 04:46 PM

Why no answers? is it something I left out...............you want a picture? How about this then ?

boat.jpg

oh bugger......I've gone all hot and bothered again.

Oh and how do you know which is the low pressure side of the air con installation?

Big bore pipework, is the Low Pressure side.

Small bore pipe work High Pressure side.

#3 catch

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Posted 23 April 2011 - 04:10 PM

Well as it turns out I did know more about air con fault diagnosis than that mechanic. So that was £40 !Removed! down the drain for no good reason.

Today I got under my motor and found the problem. Lucky for me the air con compressor is fine, it's the metal pipe/ hose combo that connects to the base of the compressor that has sprung a leak on the hose bit. I've affected a bit of a temp patch, but when you move the hose between your fingers [the way you would a cows udder] I can hear the sound of escaping gas. So just need to price up the part.


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#4 catch

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Posted 23 April 2011 - 04:23 PM

What's the best way to run my air conditioning?

Turn the air conditioning on, ensuring that it's not set to 'economy' mode. When you first get into a hot car, open the windows, ensure that the air vents are set to face level and the system is set up do do the same, not pointed at your feet. Remember cold air falls. Turn the temperature to as low as it will go, and the blower as high as possible. Also make sure that the air is on 'recirc' mode and not taking air from outside. Better to cool already cooled air!! When the temperature is more comfortable, close the windows and increase the temperature to a more suitable level as well as decreasing the blower speed. You should also point the air vents upwards to ensuring the cold air flows down again.

The above was gleaned from this
Handy website explaining air con and selling parts

#5 catch

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Posted 10 May 2011 - 10:04 AM

update:

got back from Turkey at the weekend, hire car my Son had was a brand new Renault Symbol. What a load of crap that was, he slammed on approaching traffic lights queue [not paying attention] Wheels locked and we screeched and skidded to a halt....no ABS then!....air con worked mind.

It was so reassuring getting back into my Focus at the airport, knowing it's interaction with the road surface is excellent.

Anyway took it into my Local Ford, the hose come pipe combo that has a leak on it costs circa £78 inclusive of Vat for the part. Booked into be done this Friday the 13th !.....well they are going nowhere near the brakes, so no problem there then ;)

So come Friday I will be able to tell you what its cost in total, what with fitting and the re gassing to be added to that. I could have gone to the guy who gassed it first time around, to fit it and re gas it, cash in hand so no Vat. But my local Ford is handy and I know the job will be done right this time.

#6 btmaldon

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Posted 10 May 2011 - 10:30 AM

Well as it turns out I did know more about air con fault diagnosis than that mechanic. So that was 40 !Removed! down the drain for no good reason.

Im not sure you wasted the money as you would have had to have it re-gassed with the dye in it to identify where the problem is.

#7 catch

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Posted 11 May 2011 - 07:56 AM

Im not sure you wasted the money as you would have had to have it re-gassed with the dye in it to identify where the problem is.


Whilst that could have been the case, I would rather have had the pressure gauged read [as I first requested] Then I would have undertaken a visual inspection of the hoses [as hose failures are the most common fault in any fluid leak scenario's. And as it happens a failed hose right next to the condenser [as in my case] would have been easy to find......I reckon it was debris flying up from the road surface that caused the hose to fail. Because prior to it failing, the aircon was as cold as ice.

#8 btmaldon

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Posted 11 May 2011 - 11:11 AM

I had a similar leak on a Mk3 Mondeo. One of the lower rubber/nylon pipes had been rubbing on a piece of the chassis. I cut the pipe and rejoined it with a piece of copper piping held in with 4 jubilee clips done up very tight. Worked a treat.

#9 catch

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Posted 11 May 2011 - 11:33 AM

Just goes to show what thinking "out side of the box" can achieve. In my case, if only the pipe had failed where I could have made the same repair.........and you had obviously told me sooner :rolleyes: I could have saved a fair few bob...oh well not to be

#10 catch

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Posted 13 May 2011 - 04:36 PM

Well I got it sorted this morning, the new pipe they ordered was the wrong one. But it turns out they had the right one in stock. It was on the ramp for an hour and a half mostly in the floor position with nobody near every time I looked through the observation window. Which considering it is a 15 minute job at most to replace the pipe [one nut each end of it] 30 minutes including removal and replacement of the sparse and obviously useless underside debris deflector attached to the front bumper. I'd offer the opinion it is an overly long time even allowing for checking for leaks after re gassing.

It was the shiny pipe on the right.

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you can just see the other end of the pie below and to the right of that rusty spring clip.

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I must add, Andy on the service desk [impeccable at customer contact and an asset to the dealership ] arranged to have it done first thing for me when I requested it. So I had a look around the car compound, and sat in the new Focus in the showroom. Very nice, I like the cabin and the dash very much. And I think rusting front wings and sills will be a thing of the past as Ford appeared to have nailed that problem well and good. One thing that just did not look right to me though is where the front doors meet the front wings. There is a crease line on both the door and the wing but they cross onto each others panels about 6cm apart. Making it look at first glance as if somebody has stuffed the flank of your car while you were in the supermarket....well it did to me :rolleyes:

Anyway back to the telly, free coffee and a read of the odd magazine, whilst trying to guess what all the staff in office apparel who passed across my field of vision, could possibly be employed to do? Guy's on the parts and service desk I can understand. But the two ladies on the showroom circular desk, well all I can say is their days must really drag. Then I saw one disappear and come back with a tray full of five mugs and disappear into the frosted glass sales persons hideaway. Pity that because that was when the phone on the front desk actually sprang into life. Her companion unfortunately had sidled of yet again so it went unanswered. So Hurrah for the lads on the service desks and the guys in the work shop, and the industrious Polish lady cleaner who never stopped. As for the rest, well I'd make half of them redundant, and the other half I'd send on a sour face remedial course.

The Bill:

Parts:..... £61.23
Refrigerant.£12.50
Labour......£93.29
And alas the dreaded Vat....£33.41
so in total it came to £200.43.

Job well done, and understandably expensive considering all the staff who have to be get a cut out of the labour charges. :ph34r:

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