2004 Chevy Venture

  • 4 CYL
  • AWD
  • 98,000 MILES
For the third summer in a row, our air conditioning has stopped working. When it stopped working the first time (2 years ago), the repair garage attempted to recharge the system, which was unsuccesful, so they replaced the compresor. Last summer when it stopped working again, the part was still under warranty so they replaced it again and graciously only charged us for 1/2 the labor. Currently it is at the garage and we are waiting to hear what the diagnosis is this time.
We have also had problems with heat not working in the winter. (We live in upsatate NY, so we need heat!) The system will blow cold air, and occasionally it will heat, but only after we have driven the car for about 10 minutes. It will not heat up if we just let the car idle, only if we are actually driving. Our mechanic (not the same person as the repair garage that has worked on the AC), has looked at it, but cannot find any serious problems and it seems to go back to working just fine.
Also this past spring, we had a problem suddenly with car overheating and low coolant levels. Again, our mechanic looked things over but could only find a few small leaks, so he put some stop leak in and the vehicle is fine. Are these problems related or just a coincidence? We have had a good relationship with our repair garage here in town, but I think they are getting a bit frustrated. Any help you could provide would be very much appreciated - especially since we are due to leave on our family vacation in 3 more days! Thank you.
Do you
have the same problem?
Wednesday, August 5th, 2009 AT 12:12 PM

1 Reply

In your post it states your vehicle is a 4 cylinder but I believe the only engine available in the 04 Venture was a 3.4 litre v6. The engine intake gaskets are know for leaking on these engine, it may appear as a small leak but would cause the coolant loss & over heating symptoms you describe. If the engine is overheating your A/C system will not be able to disapate the heat removed from the air for the vehicle and therefore not work poperly.
Does your van have rear A/C? The lines to the rear evepaorator core and the core itself may be leaking refridgerant. I am from NW PA, pretty much the same weather and the same road salt used on the roads in winter, and have seen corrosion damage to the rear units on a regular basis. The rear evap core in up inside the rear of the vehicle and may be difficult to check. But if your van does have rear A/C it would be reccommended, if it hasn't already been done.
Have they told you there is a leak? Contamintaed refigerant or too high of a moisture content in the refidgerant can also cause problems, clogging or causing the orifice tube (filter in the lines) to freeze up and not allowing the refridgerant to circulate. Excessive charge of refiderant oil will also decrease the effectiveness of your air conditioning system.
Also check your cabin air filter, would not decrease how cold the air is, but dirty cabin air filters decrease the air flow though your heater and air condionting system. The cabin air filters are located in the HVAC box right behind your glove compartment.
Theres a few ideas, common things I have seen.
Hope it helps, let me know.
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Wednesday, August 5th, 2009 AT 12:53 PM

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