2004 Toyota Corolla Sudden moisture (freon?) From vents

Tiny
AXYPR
  • MEMBER
  • 2004 TOYOTA COROLLA
Air Conditioning problem
2004 Toyota Corolla Automatic 84000 miles

Last night I was driving home and my AC vents started getting all wet and I noticed moisture coming from all of them. A friend with me said it was freon from the AC and it meant the 'damper' was 'off' and the repair may be minor. I am never convinced a car fix is minor since all car fixes are done by mechanics, not by me!

This is my fifth Toyota and fourth Corolla - love them as cars but this is the longest I have had one and I am worried it may be time for a trade-in. I must have reliable transportation at all times.

Thoughts? THANKS!
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Saturday, June 20th, 2009 AT 11:06 PM

9 Replies

Tiny
KHLOW2008
  • EXPERT
Hi axypr,

Thank you for the donation.

The dampness from the vents could be condensation moisture. This would happen if the cooling coil is frosting due to external air getting into the cabin when the temperature setting is low and the AC has been operating for a certain period of time.

If it is freon, the coldness of the system would be very much affected and you would not have any cooling by now.

Do you have issues with the AC cooling during normal use?
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Sunday, June 21st, 2009 AT 1:29 AM
Tiny
AXYPR
  • MEMBER
I am certain itis not simply condensation since I have had it on medium to high for days/weeks -- I live in Houston and we have been having temps of upwards of 95F and last night when this happened it was still about 88F. Once I saw it I turned off the whole vent system and I did not drive the car today. Also, the car had only been on for about 20 minutes and I often am driving for well over an hour during my commute, again, in temps well over 85F or 90F.

Not sure if that answers your question directly. I will be driving tomorrow and sweating no doubt! Since the commute will be for about an hour each way in the heat of the day! Anything in particular you think I should check for or do while driving or can do as a complete non-tech?

Thanks!
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Sunday, June 21st, 2009 AT 2:36 AM
Tiny
KHLOW2008
  • EXPERT
First thing that you should check would be if the AC system is working correctly. Ensure cool air is being blown out by the fan motor.

Next would be to check if all doors, seals and vents are set correctly. Any outside air getting into the cabin while the AC is working would cause frosting of the cooling coil.

When the moisture appears, note if the blower fan speed is the same or the air flow has dropped.

Note if the coolness of the air is affected.

Turn the AC compressor switch off and note if the comprssor is cutting out.
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Sunday, June 21st, 2009 AT 8:30 AM
Tiny
AXYPR
  • MEMBER
Ok - I followed you up until :
"Turn the AC compressor switch off and note if the comprssor is cutting out."

Can you explain that in non-technical terms please? (I am beyond amateur here. ) Thanks!
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Sunday, June 21st, 2009 AT 10:07 AM
Tiny
KHLOW2008
  • EXPERT
When the compressor is working, the AC light on dash panel should be lit. When turning it off, the light would go off.

At the same time, the compressor clutch would release itself and the cooling fans wuold stop working. Check if the fans are working when the moisture starts showing. They work in tandem with the compressor.

If you are not sure about anything, feel free to ask. Don't feel bad about asking questions as it is important to know what to do so that you can provide me with correct and accurate info to get to the bottom of this. Without correct info, diagnosis would not yield the correct results.
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Sunday, June 21st, 2009 AT 10:34 AM
Tiny
AXYPR
  • MEMBER
Well, everything seems to be working fine so I guess this was a fluke! I have driven the car yesterday and today for about 150 miles, and in heat of 95-100 with the A/C on nearly full. The lights are on when they should be, the air is cold, the fans go low to high as they should, and there are no sounds or odd things going on. Namely, there is no moisture!

So. I will wrap this up but. Can you explain to me what the condensation issue might have been - given that would have been the very strange issue. IF that was the odd issue - since I was parked outside that night instead of in my garage - then how does that happen? How can I avoid it in the future? Does it do damage to the a/c? Is it an indicator of future problems?

Thanks again for all your help!
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Monday, June 22nd, 2009 AT 10:13 AM
Tiny
KHLOW2008
  • EXPERT
Prolonged operations of the AC can frost the evaporator and when this happens, moisture would be blown out of the vents. Factors such as humidity, fresh air is getting into the cabin and the weather can case it. There is nothing to worry about as this is part of the operational symptoms of AC, only that most time they are not noticeable.

To reduce such happenings, always ensure fresh air vent is closed when AC is operating. When Auto mode is selected, the fresh air vent would open when the set temperature is achieved and this can cause the moisture or mist.
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Monday, June 22nd, 2009 AT 11:50 AM
Tiny
AXYPR
  • MEMBER
Signing off for now then. Since there was no problem afterall -- but better to have found that out here then in the dealer shop hundreds of dollars later! Or more costly - a new car later! :)

Thanks again for all your help!

CARPROS is a FAVORITE now! THANKS!
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Monday, June 22nd, 2009 AT 12:26 PM
Tiny
KHLOW2008
  • EXPERT
You are welcomed and thank you for using 2CarPros.

Anytime you have any question, just drop by.

Have a nice day :)
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Tuesday, June 23rd, 2009 AT 8:18 AM

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