Infiniti I30 '96 T - AC Compressor

Tiny
REDBIRD
  • MEMBER
  • 1996 INFINITI I30
  • 6 CYL
  • 4WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 80,000 MILES
The A/C Compressor on my '96 I30 is finally starting to give some problems at 15 yrs & 80k miles. 2 mechanic inspections haven't been able to find it, so I thought I'd ask someone with experience. Problem is only on cold start. Significant squeal (like a dry bushing) lasting about 10-30 seconds. If I turn off the Climate control system the noise stops instantly. A/C blows cold (so far at least). This has been a problem for well over a year, but now there seems to be the sound more like a dry bearing that continues well after warm up and regardless of A/C being On/Off. Question for if it's the compressor bearing/bushing: Can this be repaired without replacing the compressor?
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Friday, April 8th, 2011 AT 2:53 PM

3 Replies

Tiny
WRENCHTECH
  • EXPERT
You could replace a pulley bearing without replacing the whole compressor but I certainly don't recommend it. You almost always end up changing the whole compressor out in the near future which means the clutch job was wasted. The other issue here is that although bearings to fail and make grinding noises, they usually don't cause a squeal. That happens when the belt slips, usually due to a binding up compressor or loose belt. This job get a lot more technical than you would expect when it comes to getting it diagnosed properly. A/C diagnosis is a talent that everybody thinks they have but few really do.
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Friday, April 8th, 2011 AT 3:43 PM
Tiny
REDBIRD
  • MEMBER
Thanks WT for you're quick reply and recommendations. I will pull off the belt and try to determine the source of the squeal more accurately and if there appears to be significant risk of the compressor/bearing/clutch seizing and causing further problems. It's hard to justify the $500+ cost to replace the compressor at this stage, so I'm more concerned with risk management than optimum A/C performance. I'll repost if I gain any further insights. Thanks again.
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Friday, April 8th, 2011 AT 5:00 PM
Tiny
WRENCHTECH
  • EXPERT
You're looking at a few bucks in replacing the bearing too along with special tools required. A clutch kit can cost half of a new compressor and if and when the compressor fails, you wasted it all.
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Friday, April 8th, 2011 AT 5:16 PM

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