Car A/C not cooling in 2001 Hyundai Santa Fe

So I have a 2001 Hyundai Santa Fe, 115,000 miles, and a V6 2.7L engine. The A/C compressor went out on it around November and I just recently got it replaced, the compressor, expansion valve, and accumulator/dryer but the condenser was not replaced. That was the first time I took it in. The next day after I picked it up it was again not cooling properly, the air didn’t feel hot like when the compressor wasn’t working but it was almost warm. Now I took it back again and a leak was found in the discharge hose on the high-pressure side so that was replaced Friday of this past week. Again, I pick up the car and everything is working fine it feels really nice and cold then later in the evening when I’m coming home from work that same day, it is again not cooling properly (I even drove around extra time to make sure it had enough time to cool).

I pop the hood and touch the A/C lines and low and behold all of them are warm or hot except the expansion valve which is super cold and leaves a puddle of water under the car when I park it. Now my question is since the condenser wasn’t changed could it be that’s causing the issue? or is the expansion valve stuck closed or open? Again all of the lines feel hot or warm except for the expansion valve that feels very cold to the touch. The compressor is still kicking on and sounds normal from what I can tell but it’s just not cooling the inside of the cabin properly, it feels a little cool but not very much at all. I did do some research and figured it could also be the evaporator frozen over or something but I don’t see any frost coming out of the vents.

I do plan on calling the mechanic this week and telling him since he did say I might have to replace the condenser eventually plus I need the A/C in this Oklahoma heat. But I did want a second opinion before I drop another $200 on this car for the problem to persist. Any thoughts on what the issue could be?

It’s common practice to always replace the condenser too a when the compressor is replaced because of the debris the compressor may have deposited in the condenser.

Typical compressor rebuild kit.


I’m not a fan of the methodogy of replacing all of those items and not doing the condenser at the same time. Offhand, I tend to think the condenser is not the problem though. A/C problems can be difficult to guess at without knowing what the system pressures are both at idle and elevated RPMs.

Considering the age of the car maybe there’s an issue with a blend door in the dash and heat from the heater core is being allowed to mix with the A/C airflow.

If the evaporator is freezing up then you should not see any condensation drip underneath unless the A/C is off and the evaporator is thawing out.

Got cha, yeah I’ll be taking it by the mechanic hopefully tomorrow to see if he can get the gauges on it and see whats up.