Air con 101 – top three checks

August 13, 2015 | By | In Buying Guides
Air con 101 ? top three checks

There’s nothing better than blasting the air con in your car on a hot summer’s day. Conversely, there’s nothing worse than having a disappointingly weak air flow, a moderate temperature, or even worse – a bad smell! 

We’ve put together the must-know hints and tips that could help you find, solve and prevent problems with your air con. Then all you’ve got to do is cross your fingers for some sunshine! 

Vents aren’t blowing properly

If the vents are releasing cooled air, but not as much, it could simply be low pressure. This is caused by using the air conditioning function and can’t be prevented. But this is easily remedied by topping up the refrigerant. There are lots of refill systems available which are simple to use. It’s important not to overfill though as this can decrease performance. When you find the efficiency dropping again, simply top up.

There’s a funny smell

Unfortunately this is one of the most common and unpleasant problems. The smell is caused by mildew growth when the air conditioning is running on recirculation too often, or if the drain gets clogged. This can be corrected by running the heater on high for a long journey which can kill off the bacteria. If this doesn’t work, changing the filter will solve the problem. To prevent reoccurrence only use recirculation when the air outside is poor quality. 

It’s not cold enough

The most common cause of an air conditioner not getting cold enough is that there’s a leak. To fix this, the refrigerant needs to be recharged, or re-gassed. It’s difficult to prevent this as it often happens as the vehicle ages. Although it’s possible to recharge it yourself, it’s quite a complex job which requires a few tools that aren’t part of a standard tool kit. However most garages offer re-gassing services cheaply and often guarantee to lower the temperature by a set amount. 

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