Air conditioner compressor issue

Tiny
JOHNSONSTI
  • MEMBER
  • 2011 NISSAN PATHFINDER
  • V6
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 143,000 MILES
First time poster here.

The wife and I just bought our newer car and we think we got got at the dealer. We were told the air conditioner was just fine and it most likely was just some electronic issue that would be easy and cheap to fix.

Our air blows just fine but it is not cold. For the day we bought it the air would come on cold for maybe a minute or two then start blowing warm. Now it will not go cold at all.

We took it to two mechanics. First says it is the compressor and will cost $1,100.00 to fix out the door with parts and labor.

The second said he would hook up a vacuum and pump it clean and says that usually will fix the problem and it will cost $100.00.

That is a huge difference. Should I spend the $100.00 to see if it works or am I wasting $100.00 that I could put towards the other expensive fix?

Anyone with any knowledge would be helpful for us as we have now exhausted all our money trying to get a safe family car that has no air conditioner. Thank you kindly.
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Thursday, August 4th, 2016 AT 1:51 PM

14 Replies

Tiny
HMAC300
  • EXPERT
It really depends if the compressor is working but not correctly it will take a new or rebuilt compressor plus the evac and recharge to fix it. But it should be checked for leaks first and see if it is an actuator problem inside car.

Check the large pipe going into car under hood if it is cold it may not be an air conditioner problem. Rev engine to about $1,500.00 and hold it there for a few before checking. Then if it is cold it's not an air conditioner problem. Pull the HVAC fuse for sixty seconds with key on as that may reset the actuators then reinstall.

If the actuator is reset and works then that may fix it or it is a bad actuator like the temp one.

A set of gauges should be hooked up prior to doing anything to see what is going on with air conditioner. If both sides are equal or close it is either low on freon or compressor is bad.

I hope this helps you.
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Thursday, August 4th, 2016 AT 3:39 PM
Tiny
JOHNSONSTI
  • MEMBER
Thank you for your quick reply. We pulled the fuses and left them out for a minute or better while the pathfinder was running. It did turn the AC off and back on when we got the fuses back in. But nothing changed for our situation. We have also started to hear a roar under the dash under the glove box. It gets louder with the fan setting turning up each notch. I know there is a blower under there or something. Hope it will be ok. We noticed the compressor never would turn on while turning AC off and on. Also our step dad said the fan that comes on under the hood when the AC is on and under a load wouldn't turn on. Could that be our problem or is not turning on because the compressor is not engaging and calling for it to work? Tonight after work I am taking off the skid plates and putting a socket on the compressor to see if it turns at all. So I guess what I'm asking is an I doing right and does that blower under the dash have cause for concern and the fan behind the grill? Thank you.
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Friday, August 5th, 2016 AT 6:18 AM
Tiny
JOHNSONSTI
  • MEMBER
Also one mechanic said it was fine on the freon and full
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Friday, August 5th, 2016 AT 6:20 AM
Tiny
HMAC300
  • EXPERT
Check fuses and compressor relay under hood if Freon level is ok. The noise you hear under dash is probably the blower so don't worry about it they are loud if compressor turns over then it still could be bad as it has valves in them and that is what goes bad on it. Check items in pics then have it scanned for codes by a mechanic you can trust. I am assuming this is manual a/c where you DO NOT set temperature. If it's auto temp control where you set temp this has to be scanned to see why it's not working. But if all the stuff I have in pics is good then it has to be scanned as well.
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Friday, August 5th, 2016 AT 6:47 AM
Tiny
JOHNSONSTI
  • MEMBER
Thank you hmac300 for the pictures. I will check this evening.
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Friday, August 5th, 2016 AT 7:12 AM
Tiny
KEN
  • ADMIN
Please let us know how to goes so it will help others.

Best, Ken
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Wednesday, August 10th, 2016 AT 12:34 PM
Tiny
JOHNSONSTI
  • MEMBER
I took off all the skid plates and I can spin the compressor by hand. Had a mechanic down the road check all electrical and it is fine. He vacuumed out the lines and added correct amount of freon and oil to compressor but it still would not engage. He says it is the clutch on the compressor and we will have to replace. We had another man look at it and he said it needed anew compressor also. The first shop was considerably cheaper so I have the pathfinder there getting the new part. I was cautioned by him that the system could have a minor leak that is not detactable by the leak detector and in a couple months it could stop working again. Good news is I am getting a 1yr warranty so I feel I will have plenty of hot days next year to test it out before the warranty runs out. Will post again once I have the car in hand and AC is blowing cold.
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Wednesday, August 10th, 2016 AT 6:18 PM
Tiny
KEN
  • ADMIN
Sounds great, thanks for getting back to us, we are here to help.
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Wednesday, August 10th, 2016 AT 7:59 PM
Tiny
JOHNSONSTI
  • MEMBER
Ok guys thanks so much for all your help this has been an amazing experience to be able to run things past people that actually care about you and not a dollar sign. We have COLD air finally! I have one more issue now. The blower fan under the dash is still kinda loud but it's making a squeaking noise and chirping noise. It's driving my wife crazy! The noise does get louder with fan setting higher and vice versa. I'm thinking it's just the blower and am wondering if it's something I could fix myself. Seems like they go online for anywhere from $60-$140. I have attached a picture from where the sound is coming from. I tried a video but it won't upload. It looks like four screws holding the fan blower on and one electrical connection. Is there a huge difference between the ones that cost so much and the mid range ones? I know you get what you pay for so I'm thinking the $50 part may not be the right choice. Thank you again for everything.
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Saturday, August 13th, 2016 AT 9:16 AM
Tiny
HMAC300
  • EXPERT
I personally do not recommend parts but on rock auto one comes with the fan and that would be your easiest thing for you to replace but you never know on parts. It's about $45 without shipping. What fixed the problem with the cold air?
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Saturday, August 13th, 2016 AT 9:40 AM
Tiny
JOHNSONSTI
  • MEMBER
Ok thank you I will check out rock auto. What finally fixed the air was the clutch was bad on the compressor. Apparently you can buy just clutches for some vehicles but ours was not one and so we had to buy the whole compressor. Got that put on and everything worked fine except the blower making noise.
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Sunday, August 14th, 2016 AT 5:31 AM
Tiny
KEN
  • ADMIN
Good to hear we helped you get the problem fixed, now it sounds like it time for a new blower motor, here is a guide that can let you know what you are in for

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/blower-motor-testing

Let me know how it goes

Best, Ken
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Sunday, August 14th, 2016 AT 7:18 PM
Tiny
JOHNSONSTI
  • MEMBER
Thanks for the guide. Very helpful! When I get the part installed I will let y'all know how it went.
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Thursday, August 18th, 2016 AT 7:02 AM
Tiny
KEN
  • ADMIN
Hey,

Did you ever get the problem fixed?

Best, Ken
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Wednesday, December 21st, 2016 AT 1:47 PM

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