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92 Saab airconditioning

Hi, this is my first ever post. My 19 year old Saab’s airconditioning has completely failed. The well-regarded repair shop tried several times to recharge it and that didn’t work. They say that the aftermarket airconditioner units that are available don’t work in this car, (they tried several times on another customers car). Apparently my only option is to get a rebuilt airconditioner. Where/how do I go about this? Can I get the unit that is IN the car now rebuilt? I love my car and am the original owner.

I will do anything for it!

The well-regarded repair shop

Is that a well regarded local mechanic or the local air and radiator shop?

When the dealer or the local mechanic may be able to do the required work, a real A/C - Radiator shop would be a better place for your problem. I suggest you sit down before you get the estimate from any of those sources however. It is going to cost you more than pocket change.

Note: Down south they are called AC shops in the north radiator shops. Acturally if you live up north and are going to take a trip down south soon, that might be the best place to have it down.

I would try another independent AC shop first. If the AC is shot then it can be repaired but it will be very expensive. A second opinion is warranted first. I would forget about the aftermarket AC’s.

This is Northern Virginia–Fairfax/Loudoun counties. A huge, well regarded local independent repair shop that works on Northern European cars.

I understand this could cost up to $2000 or so, but I would do this because I don’t want to get any other car. My car is in fantastic condition! I love it! An independent AC shop-- how do I find this?

There is hope…I have owned about 8 Saabs All Classic 900’s LOVE THEM. At any rate you dont state what they found as your issue…YOu can test your AC compressor by applying 12V directly to that wire on your compressor an test the clutch operation…you can also feel the inner section of the compressor to make sure it still spins freely…

If your system worked and then just stopped then you have a leak in the system…You need to replace all of your rubber O-rings in the lines…YOu could also try to recharge the system yourself with the R134A refrigerant PLUS seal fix…the seal fix additive swells the rubber seals and make them stop leaking…if after you try this the AC works…then you know the system is fundamentally OK.It may leak out and stop again but that will tell you a lot obout the integrity of the system… So if it leaks out again…you need to replace your seals…if you want to be more specific you can recharge it using the Dye…then use a blacklight to find the leak…they also sell this kit in the stores…

THEN AGAIN…as suggested Rad shops or AC specialists have all of this equipment to quickly test your system they usually find the issue straight away and let you know what it is… They are great at what they do really. POSITIVELY FORGET THE DEALER…

You have several options here…

I still have a lot of parts for SAABS including A/C compressors…etc… My last Saab was a gorgeous 900T Convertible…with Custom one off Saab Aero Clone wheels in 17in diameter…I lowered the car 1.7 inches 2.75 in Exhaust piping…and then I recalibrated my Saab APC Turbo control box to get me from 8 lbs of boost to 17psi…Talk about a faaaast Saab! Whoooo Especially since they have long gear ratios…when that turbo would spool up in those looong gears…I would leave people FAR behind me when I got on it…Man…I miss that car daily…

They did all that stuff. The system is not fundamentally o.k. They did the dye stuff etc. etc.

How do I go about finding an independent AC shop???

Try the yellow pages. Stay away from the chain shops.

OK and what was the prognosis? What is at fault…bad compressor? What? The system is not that complicated…OK…it is a bit…but there are definite commonalities in Saab part failures…in fact every Saab has the same issues… You can go to SAABNET DOT COM for mucho advice on the common failures…especially in A/C

I’m having a hard time believing that is isnt repairable…If the compressor doesnt turn on…it can be due to insufficient charge…a faulty pressure switch…a faulty A/C switch, bad compressor, bad compressor clutch…can be a few things but nothing thats out of reach… If they tried all of the things I mentioned then they had a repair flowchart they were following and it should have revealed the issue or culprit…Its not rocket science…

What on earth did they tell you?..That would be very helpful to know

I’m not real convinced that your shop is on the ball as to A/C repair. It should not be difficult to determine where any leaks are and repair them as necessary. The worst case scenario is a simple compressor failure.

The part about replacing the complete A/C unit is a bit baffling; not to mention they have tried this several other times on other cars.

Maybe you should find a shop that specializes in A/C repair and have the car inspected without saying anything to the shop about what the previous shop has told you.

Sometimes the phrase “well regarded” may not mean much. I’m not saying this shop is a den of thieves at all but sometimes a non-mechanically minded person’s view may be one that is obtained through rose colored glasses.