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Honda accord air conditioning not working

My 2011 honda accord with low mileage, 20k miles is not working, blowing warm air. What is likely wrong with it? Also I heard you have to let it sit overnight before testing the AC system is that true or not?

Take your vehicle to a shop that knows that what you heard is false.


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Where does garbage like this come from ?
And does not matter what is likely wrong with it because this is not a do it yourself problem . Any decent air conditioner shop can solve this.

Is the clutch engaging when the AC is turned on?

You can turn on the AC and then shine a light on the AC compresor clutch. The clutch will engage/disengage periodically.

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I am not an AC specialist, but my guess is seals are leaking. With only 20K on an 8 year old car your AC has been used very little. My car is 13 years old, the AC gets used about 360 days per year. Never touched, blows ice cold.

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I called the dealer and they told me they can’t test for leaks or really do anything until they do a vacuum and refill of refrigerant, and they want to charge me $150 just for that. Is this accurate? Why can’t they test to see if it is even low on refrigerant first? If it is a bad fuse or something it is a waste of money. And can they test for leaks without doing a refill first?

Why call or not take it to an independent AC specialist for an estimate?
Car is not under warranty.


They want to make sure you have enough money to pay the diagnostic fee. If a vehicle comes in with an A/C problem I am not going to begin with evacuate and recharge, I am going to diagnose the problem. However if the system is very low I don’t want to wait for the customer to authorize the evacuate and recharge service, that amount of money should already be on the repair order.

A manifold gauge set can be used to determine if you’re low on refrigerant. Leaks can be detected using U/V dye and a special light, or a leak detector.
My old Toyota had two leaks.I had a leaky discharge hose which I found using dye. I had a local shop weld a new end on, and thought I was home free. Nope. I couldn’t pull a vacuum. As it turned out I also had a leak in the pressure switch where the two electrical terminals came out of the case. The pressure switch in this car is right next to the expansion valve. I found that one using a battery powered leak detector. Looking for dye under the hood wouldn’t have helped.

This is why some people say that A/C is really not a DIY. But I set out to learn, got my 609 certification
($ 20 and open book test through Essco) and spent time fixing.
Many shops told me don’t bother fixing the A/C on this car.

There’s no need to evacuate the system and refill it with refrigerant. If there’s refrigerant in the system the sniffer will find the leak.

It sounds like someone needs to make a boat payment.



Does all refrigerant have UV dye in it or is there a sniffer that does not need UV dye?

I heard that “placing a knife underneath one’s bed cuts pain in half”.
Similar to that statement about the A/C, it’s not valid.

A refrigerant sniffer is an electronic device that detects for refrigerant leaks.

These can detect leaks as small as 1oz/yr.

Nobody uses dyes anymore.


Do most shops have these sniffers?

If they are a dedicated air conditioner shop the answer is yes .

But we are back to the original suggestions. Start calling air conditioner shops, look at online reviews and ask friends who they might use and then make a decision.

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You can certainly check for a bad fuse. You can also check for power to the compressor clutch with a simple circuit tester if the connector is accessible.

It is preferred but not required. With very slow leaks that take weeks to lose refrigerant it can be difficult to observe the leak. The PAG oil used in R-134A systems is a bit thick and will block small leaks during and after operation, this makes the Halogen gas leak detector useless. After resting over night the oil settles and the leak is exposed. Evaporator leaks can be difficult to identify however I have found that after sitting overnight when switching on the A/C the chlorine odor associated with a refrigerant leak that is easily picked up with a leak detector.

Experience, get some.


I’ve found that if a vehicle has a refrigerant leak, and you allow the vehicle to sit overnight in the shop, the concentration of halogen gas that has accumulated around the vehicle makes it impossible to locate any leaks.

The refrigerant sniffer is going off before the hood is even opened.

Sometimes I would have to open the shop door and blow the halogen gas out of the shop with a fan before I could start looking for any leaks in the system.

And from my forty years of experience repairing AC systems, I’ve always found the leak with the sniffer.


Before you jump ahead, here are some simple things to check: