2002 Dodge Intrepid air conditioning not cold

Tiny
WILL351
  • MEMBER
  • 2002 DODGE INTREPID
2002 Dodge Intrepid 6 cyl 101000 miles

The a/c is cool, but not cold. Especially on a hot day, I can feel the cool air coming out of the vents, but the cabin never seems to get cold (and I almost sweat to death). Took it to a shop, they said the pressure was low and the freon was low too. They tightened a valve that come off the condenser or compressor (Im not sure which) that seemed to be lose and leaked some gas. They say the system is pressurized and recharged but the air still feels the same, cool but not cold. On hot days in Texas, like today, 105, it doesnt even feel cool anymore! They say it may be the xpansion valve. Yuour thoughts are much appreciated. Thank you in advance.
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Wednesday, June 24th, 2009 AT 9:48 PM

10 Replies

Tiny
BUDDYCRAIGG
  • EXPERT
They say it MAY be the expansion valve?

Take it to a different shop, cause they don't know what they are doing.
Unless there is more to the story that you are not telling us.

How can you be a shop in Texas and not know how to diagnose an AC system.
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Wednesday, June 24th, 2009 AT 11:16 PM
Tiny
WILL351
  • MEMBER
Why do you say they dont know what they are doing? Are you saying the expansion valve has no relavence to my problem (cool but not cold a/c). Apparently the the compressor is running fine and the system is holding pressure now. What do think it might be instead of expansion valve?
Thank you for your responses.
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Thursday, June 25th, 2009 AT 7:41 AM
Tiny
BUDDYCRAIGG
  • EXPERT
I don't mean to insult your repair shop.
When someone says, "The problem MAY be such and such"
What I hear is, "We don't know what the problem is, so let's waste your money and throw parts at it"
I get angry when a shop causes a customer to spend money needlessly.

By your description of what's going on,

The problem very well could be the expansion valve.

But it could also be the compressor, the mode blend door in the duct work in the dash, debris on the fins of the condenser, something blocking the air flow through the condenser, debris on the fins of the evaporator.

A person with experience, a couple of thermometers, a set of gauges, and their senses of sight, sound and feeling should be able diagnose your problem with 99% accuracy.

I would have felt better if they said, "we believe that it's most likely the expansion valve."

I don't like it when I throw away money, and I don't want you to.
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Thursday, June 25th, 2009 AT 10:50 AM
Tiny
WILL351
  • MEMBER
Thaks for the response, again. They changed the expansion valve and the dryer and that did the trick. Then, all of a sudden, the compressor died! Now they are replacing that for me. Hope that does the trick now for good. I wonder could the compressor have blown due the rechraging of the system after the initial leak was found? In other words, did they blow the compressor? The car is 8 years old though.
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Thursday, June 25th, 2009 AT 7:08 PM
Tiny
BUDDYCRAIGG
  • EXPERT
I dont think they did anything wrong.

What I would speculate happened.

The expansion valve was not closing enough to start with. So there wasn't enough of a pressure difference to make the freon cool the air.

Once the expansion valve was working correctly, the pressures on the high side of the system were just too over powering for a old compressor that hasn't had to deal with such high pressure for so long that it blew up.

In other words, the expansion valve was the weakest link, once it was replace, the second weakest link failed. That being the compressor.

Again, I'm sorry for harping on your repair shop. I just don't want anyone to get taken for a ride.
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Thursday, June 25th, 2009 AT 8:13 PM
Tiny
WILL351
  • MEMBER
Not sure what happened but now the ac is back to where it was originally. Sp far they have replaced the drier, expansion valve and compressor. Now they want to change the Condensor as they say this is critical to take the coldness to the next level. The air feels cold at night but during 105 degrees days in Texas, it just isnt cutting it. They also mention an evaporator. How would I know which is better to replace? Is there atest that can be performed or do they have to keep replacing one thing at a time until we get the desired result?
Im getting frustrated and loosing confidence.
Suggestions and comments are greatly appreciated.
Thank you in advance
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Monday, June 29th, 2009 AT 10:04 PM
Tiny
BUDDYCRAIGG
  • EXPERT
Condensers don't go bad,
They may be damaged and have a leak. And have to be replaced. But your freon would be leaking out.

They may be clogged up with stuff and need to be cleaned. (Think of a hair comb with a bunch of matted hair in it)

but they don't work so-so and need to be replaced.
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Monday, June 29th, 2009 AT 10:56 PM
Tiny
WILL351
  • MEMBER
Thank you for your reposnse, again. So what I hear you saying is that the condenser is the next logical thing to replace before the evaporator. I guess if it isnt colder after the new condenser, then I am out about 900 bucks for all that has been done up to this point and I have to swallow the additional cost of an evaporator. Isnt there some way to jump to the right conclusion?
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Monday, June 29th, 2009 AT 11:02 PM
Tiny
BUDDYCRAIGG
  • EXPERT
NO.
I'm not saying that at all.

I doubt very much that there is anything wrong with the condenser. Unless it just needs to be cleaned.

I was trying to beat around the bush, but I think you need to take your car someplace else
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Monday, June 29th, 2009 AT 11:07 PM
Tiny
MICHAEL77346
  • MEMBER
On my 01 intrepid I had the same problem. I took it to the shop and they found a leak in my condenser. They used a certain type of freon that they flushed with and it filled the leak. It was pretty small, but it worked.

However, about a month later I had to replace it. I'll let you make your own conclusion, I just thought this knowledge would help you make your decision.
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Tuesday, July 7th, 2009 AT 1:08 AM

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