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2016 Subaru Forester - Weak AC

My 2016 Subaru Forester has a poor air conditioner. Local dealer says that that year and model “has problems with air conditioner”. No recall, no fix available says dealership. Takes 5 miles for my car to begin to cool down. I have had it in to dealership 6 times, it’s still under warranty.

Did you have a question?

Time to sell it and get another car with a good AC.

Hmm. I have a 2016 Forester (2.5i Premium) and I have not noticed any AC issues. It seems perfectly normal to me. As a fellow Fozzy owner I offer these suggestions understanding you may already be doing it: Use a windshield sun shade to keep the car from heat-soaking in the sun. I find it makes a huge difference. If you are only going to be in a store a short time, point the back end at the sun and let the rear glass tint help. When rain is not an issue leave both rear windows cracked 2 inches to allow some heat to escape and also close your moonroof shade when you park.

Does it have automatic climate control? Friends of mine have trouble setting it correctly on a different car. Take 15 minutes with the owners manual and make sure you’re getting it set correctly.
What part of the country are you in?

I have a 2015 Forester and think the AC is marginal to poor.

On a recent drive on a sunny 90º day, the interior temperature got down to 80º after an hour. The air from the vents is cool but not cold enough. I’d take it in but the warrantee is out. Perhaps next summer.

Hello Miller and BillRussell. Despite my earlier comment, I may have to agree. It was 92 yesterday here and the AC barely kept up in my 2016 Fozzy. Coincidentally, I have a 2018 VW Passat for testing. In back to back drives the Passat’s AC was significantly cooler coming out of the vents. I am thinking the Suby AC is just not as good. I may also ask that hte AC be tested at my next service visit. For the heck of it, I am also going to change the cabin air filter since it is so cheap and easy to do.

What needs to be known are the high and low side system pressures both at idle and at elevated RPMs.

Without knowing those it’s impossible to fathom much of a guess.

Three years is a bit young to have a refrigerant leak but as with any manufactured product there is going to be a certain percentage of failures. Maybe you just happened to get a flawed one.

The Subarus I’ve owned (3 of them) have all ad pretty good A/C units.

Makes me appreciate my Sonoma. A 100 degrees lately and putting out 28 degree air.

Make sure the dealership has checked on these two tsb’s to see if they might apply in your case. If you have the turbo engine option, that might be related also. Do you have the turbo?

10-84-16R: New AC compressor & clutch
11-173-17: HVAC Blower Fan Speed Variation

Miller, I have to thank you for saving me some money. After your post I started to suspect my 2016 Forester’s AC had lost its mojo. I took it in yesterday for the last scheduled service under warranty. The tech found my refrigerant was low. Purged and refilled under warranty. Noticeably colder now. Thanks for getting me thinking!

Let’s hope he fixed the leak, otherwise you will be back again soon.

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