Common Reasons Why Your Car AC is Not Blowing Cold Air

Written by Fair Fax Auto Repair and published on

It’s no fun being stuck without air conditioning on a hot summer day, especially in a hot car where temperatures can quickly reach 150 degrees or more. But A/C is more than just comfort; it’s a safety issue too. In fact, one of the most dangerous places for someone to be during a heatwave is inside of their car without A/C since temperatures can spike to dangerous levels.

Why Isn’t My Car’s AC Blowing Cold Air?

Fall may be just around the corner but the weather is still hot and humid. So, what happens when you turn on your vehicle’s air conditioner and it doesn’t blow cold air through the vents? Yes, you utter a few choice words but then direct your hands-free assistant to call Fairfax Auto Repair. Why? Because we can figure out the problem and it might be caused by the following three things.

1. Your Refrigerant Needs Replenishment

As with your home’s air conditioning system, your vehicle’s AC uses refrigerant to cool the air blowing through the vents, but it doesn’t get low without cause. You might think your AC would run through refrigerant, but the system inside your engine is closed off, so the coolant doesn’t go anywhere. If you do need to “recharge,” as we call it, your refrigerant, there is an underlying problem that needs attention. Something is causing your AC to lose refrigerant and this is not normal.

2. The System Has a Leak

The most common cause of lost refrigerant is a leak, but don’t think AC refrigerant all over your garage floor will clue you into the problem. The refrigerant dissipates the minute it hits the air, so you must look for other signs that your system is leaking. If you hear an audible click or hissing sounds from the AC, it’s time for an inspection. Other indicators of a refrigerant leak include your vehicle’s air conditioner cycling on and off constantly and an oily residue around the air conditioner hoses and pipe fittings.

3. Malfunctioning Fan Motor

Most vehicles these days have two motor fans and these fans are located at the front of your engine. Even if you only have one fan, if it fails, your AC is going to follow suit and you’ll probably also find yourself on the side of the road overheated. One way to avoid this AC malfunction is to have your fans checked regularly to ensure they’re operating as they should be. This is part of a regular vehicle maintenance routine, and it will save you a huge headache in the end.

Finally, condenser failure, a clogged filter, or even radiator trouble can cause your vehicle’s AC to blow hot air instead of cold air. 

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