I am new here and I need help with something. My 2007 Forenza is hardly blowing cold air. I had the AC service at a local Jiffy Lube conducted on my car and even after that, the air was not blowing as cold as it should be. I was told by the mechanic at that shop that it was the air drier. He also said that I should be able to do this on my own and that I could get a replacement for about $20.
Question 1) Could this be the problem? I know that the mechanics at Jiffy Lube can sometimes be misguiding(based on personal experience), and I have never heard of an air drier.
Question 2) Is it relatively easy to change this on my own? I do not have the money to take this to an auto shop. I have done work under hoods before including fixing oil leaks, changing gaskets, changing alternators and replacing belts and such, but I have never worked on this before.
Question 3) Where is this thing even at?? I found a picture of what a drier looks like and could not find it under the hood anywhere. The guy at JL said it is accessible from under the hood and not under the car.
Open to all suggestions and thoughts. I am a college student in engineering and I literally do not have the money for an autoshop. Please help me someone.
Unless you have HVAC experience and equipment, or have access to such equipment, there's not much you can do. Pretty much the only parts the typical owner can change on his own are the drive belt, the cabin filter, possibly a fuse or relay and maybe the fans.
Now - I have limited knowledge of HVAC, and the only drier I know of in that system is what's called a receiver/dryer, and that is going to be a cylindrical aluminum can usually mounted close to the condenser which is in front of the radiator - as far as I know, they rarely give trouble, and I believe are only changed if they have been exposed to moisture, for example if the system has been opened.
In any case - you can't change the receiver/dryer unless you have the equipment to evacuate and replace the refrigerant.
Not blowing as cold as it should suggests a lack of refrigerant, but, if you've just had it serviced, I don't see why that should be the case - in fact - if I had just paid anyone to do an a/c service, my a/c had better be cooling properly, or I want it fixed under warranty.
There are cans of refrigerant available at most auto parts stores, however I do not recommend that approach, unless you know how to tell if the refrigerant is low, I believe there are many overfilled and under-functioning a/c systems out there - too much refrigerant can also cause problems.
98 - 1.8 Mitsubishi Pajero iO
98 - 2.0 Suzuki Grand Vitara - SQ420
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15 - 2.4 Kia Sportage
The guy at Jiffy Lube actually took all of the refridgerant out for me the other day and said that he would hold onto it for me until I get this fixed and that all I would need to do is change the drier. So extracting the refridegerant is not an issue. I don't think he changed that as a part of the AC Service because it was not a part of the service items. I will find out why.
I have never heard of the drier before, and in fact I find in many different places that it is spelled "drier" and also "dryer." I don't understand why. When I went to look for the replacement, the auto stores have it as "drier" but in manuals and other readings, I see it as "dryer." I am not too sure if that would make a difference, but that is one of my findings. Lol. Thank you for the response, is there anything else you could possibly tell me given the info I just gave?
As Fordem points out, they absorb freon system moisture using a desiccant. And moisture doesn't get IN the system unless there is a freon leak causing loss of charge and moisture takes its place.
Assuming that your A/C test pressures are unable to be correctly observed by the Jiffy Lube dude, then he must suspect a blockage. Yes maybe the dryer, but I doubt it, unless the system has been recently worked on.
I would speculate that the expansion valve is partially clogged or that the compressor is on its last legs, OR...even that the Jiffy dude is only guessing or fabricating tales.
Max, thank you for your reply, when the guy at JL did the AC service, he did find the expansion valve was clogged and the pressure did build up, but he claims to have fixed that problem. After he worked on it, the air got cooler, but it is not getting as cool as it should. I also have a 99 Honda accord that gets colder than the forenza...much colder. Assuming that the expansion valve is not clogged anymore, would you still think that it could be the compressor?
I could only better evaluate the system with high side and low side pressure readings, as any good A/C mechanic would do same.
The fact that the expansion valve was clogged tells us that debris came from somewhere (typically cast off compressor bits) and further inspection and probably a system FLUSH is in order. Again, a good tech can tell from pressures and component temps what to address.
And BTW, you won't get "Honda like" cooling out of any Zuki. The design is only adequate, as opposed to kick-butt A/C, from my experience.
I have to agree with Max... I'm not sure how cold the OP is expecting the AC to get, but mine has never really been that cold compared with other cars. Even since brand new the AC was only "adequate" in my opinion. Problem here is everyone has an opinion of how cold is "cold enough", and without any actual temperatures to talk about we are all just guessing.
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