AC is blowing warm air, compressor not engaged


#1

2006 Pontiac G6. The AC is blowing warm air. In looking under the hood with the Max AC on, I can definitely tell the clutch for the compressor is not engaging, but I don’t know much beyond that. Not hearing any strange noises or anything, but then the compressor isn’t engaging so that’s not a surprise.

What’s the most likely case here…low freon? blown fuse? Condensor issue? I know a lot of things can cause the clutch to not engage. I’m REALLY hoping that the compressor doesn’t need to be replaced. Any advice or tips before I take it in would be greatly appreciated.


#2

Visit a local, independent AC shop and all your problems will be answered. That’s the best tip that you are going to get.


#3

The most common cause of those symptoms is low refrigerant. It would be worth a shot to put gauges on it to see what the pressures are. Don’t add refrigerant without checking the pressures. It might not be low and you can overcharge the system. Always use proper protection when working on A/C (insulated gloves and eye protection).

Low refrigerant means there is a leak somewhere. Fixing such leaks is beyond the comfort level of most DIYers. I have NOT heard good things about A/C stop-leak products.


#4

Thanks…yeah I’m definitely not going to try messing with anything on my own and will definitely go to a Pro. Just really hoping it’s not the compressor.


#5

NYBo is correct that the likely cause is low refrigerant.

Not trying to be a downer, but if the problem is low refrigerant it’s likely due to a compressor shaft seal leak. The car is 11 years old this happens to most of them.

You can try adding some refrigerant if it is low and it may get you through the summer.
When next summer rolls around repeat the process.


#6

@ok4450

Why are you leaning towards a compressor shaft seal leak?

The car’s old enough . . . could even have a leaking evaporator, manifold hose or condenser

I’ve worked on plenty of older vehicles with other components leaking, but the compressor is still fine, and still the original part


#7

Oh, I agree that a leak could be anywhere at that age. It’s just that I’ve seen many compressor seal leaks and due to the rotation and heat the shaft seal (to me anyway) is the first suspect.

Short of adding dye or using a sniffer sometimes a visual of the compressor will let you know if it’s leaking by the oil blotch on the bottom near the clutch.

Like any A/C refrigerant shortage, the entire system should be inspected for leaks. Some use dye, some propane, or whatever but I prefer the sniffer.

The only problem with using a sniffer around my home on a car is that the farmers coop has a large herd of anhydrous ammonia tanks nearby. Sometimes the anhydrous will belch out of a pop-off valve and even though I can’t detect it the sniffer will go nuts.


#8

When did ac last work? How was it blowing? Ice cold? Cool? Going from ice to zero usually means something failed. A slow downward spiral of losing cold usually means a slow leak