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aircon in car question please

bargainhunter2009 Avatar
7y, 5m agoPosted 7 years, 5 months ago
I have a ford focus, 6 years old. Whenever air con is on, the car is less powerful. When pulling away in first feels like the car may stall and its very slow to pull away. Anyone have any idea what it could be please? Thanks
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bargainhunter2009 Avatar
7y, 5m agoPosted 7 years, 5 months ago
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#1
A bad compressor from the sounds of it. Get it checked professionally, or run away.
#2
Ours has stopped working in our Y reg Zafira full stop :-(
#3
Mine needs new gas lol
#4
That doesn't sound too good, the compressor will load the engine more but not to the point that you should notice it. I have past experience of complete compressor failure and it went over £1000 to repair so I'd get it checked out by an aircon specialist pretty pronto.
#5
sounds like the compressor and plate are stuck together, basicly when you switch it on the plate comes together with the compressor to make it work, if you look at the front of it were the belt goes on the pulley, you will see a metal plate attached to the front, if you dont use the air con regular it will lock up, this is why you should put it on once a week to keep it working. have a look before you take it to garage. all the best
#6
greg_68
That doesn't sound too good, the compressor will load the engine more but not to the point that you should notice it. I have past experience of complete compressor failure and it went over £1000 to repair so I'd get it checked out by an aircon specialist pretty pronto.


Thanks. Its still in its 3 month warranty, so will contact the dealer who sold the car to me. He told me the warranty covers non wearable parts which I hope the compressor is - do you think it is? (sorry dont know what a compressor is?!)
#7
bargainhunter2009
Thanks. Its still in its 3 month warranty, so will contact the dealer who sold the car to me. He told me the warranty covers non wearable parts which I hope the compressor is - do you think it is? (sorry dont know what a compressor is?!)


Fingers crossed then :thumbsup:
#8
wickedteen
sounds like the compressor and plate are stuck together, if you look at the front of it were the belt goes on the pulley, you will see a metal plate attached to the front, if you dont use the air con regular it will lock up, this is why you should put it on once a week to keep it working. have a look before you take it to garage. all the best


Along the right lines, you are supposed to use it once per week to keep the seals on the cooling system lubricated.

If the clutch is not working on the compressor properly it may seize shatter and totally obliterate your aircon system (like mine). Not that I want t oscare you or anything.
#9
greg_68
Along the right lines, you are supposed to use it once per week to keep the seals on the cooling system lubricated.

If the clutch is not working on the compressor properly it may seize shatter and totally obliterate your aircon system (like mine). Not that I want t oscare you or anything.


I do use it regularly, but I dont know if the owners who had it before used it a lot or not. Only had the car for 2 months. Am really worried now. If I dont use air con will compressor be ok?
#10
bargainhunter2009
Thanks. Its still in its 3 month warranty, so will contact the dealer who sold the car to me. He told me the warranty covers non wearable parts which I hope the compressor is - do you think it is? (sorry dont know what a compressor is?!)


I doubt whether it will to be honest, a lot of warranty small print has a disclaimer against aircon major parts.

I hope not in your case though. Good luck, get it seen asap.
#11
ok try this, start your car , open bonnet, while you are infront of the car get someone to switch on the air con, if its working you should hear a loud click, which is the plate connecting to the compressor, if this dosnt happen then the plate is jammed on, which means a new compressor, which is about £150
#12
greg_68
I doubt whether it will to be honest, a lot of warranty small print has a disclaimer against aircon major parts.

I hope not in your case though. Good luck, get it seen asap.


Hes a small trader, operates from home. He never gave me any small print, just a bit of paper saying that I got a 3 mont warranty and then I got an email from him when I asked saying covers non replaceable parts. Sounds like a compressor is a non replaceable part - is it?
#13
I have had my car for 8 months or so, and only realised it had air con last Tuesday.
#14
sorry mate but there is no such thing as non replaceable part, all parts on cars are replaceable parts, the only time it becomes non replaceable is if you write it off and then its down to your insurance.
the compressor is a replaceable part as you can replace it from any motor factors, seems like your warranty isnt worth the paper its written on, sorry
#15
Sorry this is taken from his email

We operate our own warranty scheme which generally covers failure of non wearable items.

We do hope that your car is fine and that the issue of warranty will not arise, but if you do have a problem with it please contact me immediately as I do all my own repairs rather than paying a third party to do so.


Its non wearable items whatever that means.
#16
If it is covered in Haynes manual for this model try buying the book first. I would recommend that all owners of cars of this age should have Haynes on hand anyway.

Google also has loads of hits on Focus faults.
#17
bargainhunter2009
Sorry this is taken from his email

We operate our own warranty scheme which generally covers failure of non wearable items.

We do hope that your car is fine and that the issue of warranty will not arise, but if you do have a problem with it please contact me immediately as I do all my own repairs rather than paying a third party to do so.


Its non wearable items whatever that means.


your not covered, as the clutch plate is wearable and locks to the compressor.
#18
wickedteen
your not covered, as the clutch plate is wearable and locks to the compressor.


Thanks, if I dont use aircon then its not a problem anyway so myabe I wont use aircon

I will have to see what he replies as the car has other faults too. May sell it I think, not sure.
#19
wickedteen
your not covered, as the clutch plate is wearable and locks to the compressor.


What does that mean though? If I do buy it myself, do I need a clutch plate or a compressor?
#20
as you can see by my pic i had a scorpio cosworth to save petrol i removed the belt which ran the aircon as we never used it, why not try this, it would be safer as someone may switch it on accidently.
#21
bargainhunter2009
What does that mean though? If I do buy it myself, do I need a clutch plate or a compressor?


a compressor and its not easy to do it yourself, as you need to stop the gasses getting out, i think, if you look at the compressor theres two pipes coming from it they are gas pipes.
#22
This car so annoying, yet another problem. Wish I had never got it, may part exchange it and get an astra
#23
just hope they dont check the air con, have you tried giving the car back as not fit for purpose, tell him that as he is a trader you will take it to trading standards
#24
wickedteen
just hope they dont check the air con, have you tried giving the car back as not fit for purpose, tell him that as he is a trader you will take it to trading standards


Think I may try that if he wont repair it.
#25
I may be wrong, but I tend to think that All items on a car are wearable.

As any item can wear with age?

Cleverly worded warranty that one.
#26
Shambolic
I may be wrong, but I tend to think that All items on a car are wearable.

As any item can wear with age?

Cleverly worded warranty that one.


Yeh I know. Well he seemed an ok guy, when he emails me back (emailed as easier to put it all down) will update. Will def threaten with trading standards though if he dont fix it
#27
let us know how you get on, good luck
#28
a/c compressors can put quite a load on an engine - i know that i notice the drop in power on my old shed and it's been the same on other cars i've had. If the compressor was seized you'd know all about it since the a/c wouldn't be working....if the compressor is faulty it's a specialist job to replace as you need the equipment to drain down the system as it's illegal to discharge to atmosphere IIRC.

Does the a/c work as expected in terms of cooling the cabin?
#29
Nothing wrong with it if it is a small-ish petrol. You adapt your driving style accordingly.
banned#30
greg_68
That doesn't sound too good, the compressor will load the engine more but not to the point that you should notice it. I have past experience of complete compressor failure and it went over £1000 to repair so I'd get it checked out by an aircon specialist pretty pronto.


I never use the air con in mine - but did today for the first time in yonks. I noticed the same thing. less power in all gears. Was fine when switched off. Only had the car serviced a month ago!
#31
When the car is idle, and you put the aircon on, do the revs drop by more than 200?
#32
they should drop off then pickup it self up to normal revs, but i suppose its different with a small engine
#33
spoken to 2 family members who have focus's and they both have the same problem! Engine revs dont drop much when air con on. Dont know maybe heat affected it today or something. Feel happier that other people i know have same problem though
#34
niallmoran
a/c compressors can put quite a load on an engine - i know that i notice the drop in power on my old shed and it's been the same on other cars i've had. If the compressor was seized you'd know all about it since the a/c wouldn't be working....if the compressor is faulty it's a specialist job to replace as you need the equipment to drain down the system as it's illegal to discharge to atmosphere IIRC.

Does the a/c work as expected in terms of cooling the cabin?
hi yes air con works lovely, lovely and cold.
#35
sounds like normal behaviour TBH - you'll notice it more if you've got fan and other electic things on as that will be loading up the alternator as well....
#36
I am still of the opinion that you should see no noticeable difference when the aircon is on, yes the revs may drop a little but not to the point where you think the car may stall and it effects the pulling way from stanstill performance.

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