AC/Defroster Compressor not working

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My car is a 2001 Saturn LW200 with 71500 miles. The water pump was replaced 2 weeks ago and the defroster/AC has not worked since. Was working before I took it to the dealer for repair. Went back to the dealer, telling them the compressor does not come on (fan works) and they said the freon is gone and condenser may have a leak. When I pressed them from a more detailed explanation, they said maybe the compresser is bad. What trouble shooting can I do to narrow the field? This sounds expensive and I do not have an unlimited budget. I am frustrated and mad :evil: that the mechanic will not explain what is wrong with the car. How can he say "maybe" to all these items? Either he looked at it or not. I thought they did not tighten the compressor/water pump belt or a fuse had flown. Thank you for your help. :)

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Wednesday, April 25th, 2007 AT 3:32 PM

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Hey Happy,

These sort of thigns are very difficult. The
ac has a low pressure switch that will not let the compressor run to prevent damage. Normally a shop will refill the system including a special dye. The dye is visble under a certain light. That is how they find leaks. If there is no refrigerant there is a leak somewhere.

Now is the difficult part. Was the leaks a coincidence or was it caused by the shop. On my 96 satty I found it helpfull to move the ac unit to replace my waterpump. I did not have any leaks afterwards. If I had a weak hose or seal moving the compressor around could have caused a leak. Is that the shops responsibility?

Unless the dealer charged the system they are only guessing as to the cause of the leak. You could go back to the dealer and speak to the service manager.
Explain your concerns. See if he will agree to pay for any possible damage caused by the prior service work. It could be as simple as a bad o-ring seal. The tuff part is if there was a major failure such as a compressor or condensor chances are the cost will be your responsibility. I would find this reasonable from my experience. The other option is to find another shop for a second opinion and/or the repairs. See the Link "Avoid Car Repair Rip Off" in the blue column to the left of this post for some good sense advice.

Good luck and let us know. :)

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Wednesday, April 25th, 2007 AT 6:40 PM

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