How Automotive Air Conditioning Works

How Automotive Air Conditioning Works

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A vehicle’s air conditioning system doesn’t create air that is cold. It truly takes the heat and moisture out of the atmosphere which has already been in the automobile of yours, leaving behind cooler air. Using a great knowledge of the way the components work can help to clarify the techniques of repairs in the air conditioning system.

The Freon/refrigerant resides in the a/c system. The a/c compressor initiates the high side of the system just where it’s compresses the Freon/refrigerant into a high pressure state causing it to liquefy. It travels through the high pressure lines to the condenser. The condenser which is much like a small radiator, puts the liquid in contact with air that is fresh on the exterior of the vehicle, which absorbs the heat from the liquid. After that it moves into the expansion valve or perhaps orifice tube just where it’s limited and becomes gaseous into the low pressure side of the a/c system. Then it moves into the receiver dryer/accumulator that contains a desiccant bag to remove and collect unwanted impurities and moisture/water. The clean gaseous freon/refrigerant then travels through the tubing into the evaporator(that is generally located in the passenger compartment of the dash). Freon/refrigerant in the gaseous state of its is now in a position to absorb heat from the air passing through the evaporator fins, leaving behind the much cooler air. Fans blow this cooler dry air into the car’s cabin. The refrigerant travels to the compressor in the suction hose of the a/c system to get compressed back to the high pressure gas and start the process once again.

The freon/refrigerant also carries dispersed oil which helps to keep the air conditioning compressor lubricated while operating. Freon/refrigerant staying charged or even in a complete state is essential to the appropriate lubrication and operation of the a/c compressor. R-12 used to be the widely used freon/refrigerant up to 1993. All vehicles which were produced in 1994 and later on were required by the Environmental Protection Agency to be equipped with R 134 freon/refrigerant, which was determined to be much better for the earth. There were also stricter regulations enforced against the leakage and handling of refrigerant/Freon and the repairing of a vehicles a/c system.

If the Freon/refrigerant level gets low, the a/c system is able to still operate, although it may loose several of it is cooling effect, or perhaps it is able to shorten the cycle of operation, and yes it could cause damage as a result of the compressor not being properly lubricated while operating. Checking pressures of the a/c system while in operation is able to give a sign of low Freon/refrigerant, but it can’t inform you of exactly how low the refrigerant is. If the Freon/refrigerant level is low, it’s because of a leak that has created in the product.

In case you are a/c system isn’t in working order, it’s a wise idea to have your trusted repair facility perform some simple checks. Look at the operation of the compressor, it’s belt and clutch, check out the low and high pressures of the device while operating, check proper control panel operation, check heater blower fan and engine cooling fan operation, check for restrictions in the system, check for proper air flow through the condenser and evaporator, check for any apparent leaks. The next article of ours is going to talk about leaks in an a/c system and ways to locate them.

Steve and Karen Johnston are owners of All About Automotive in Historic Downtown Gresham. In case you’ve comments or questions, call them at email or 503-465-2926 them at . Steve and Karen Johnston are owners of All About Automotive, providing auto repair and auto maintenance in Historic Downtown Gresham. In case you’ve comments or questions, call them at email or 503-465-2926 them at , you are able to also see the site of ours at .

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