The attention-grabbing headline in the world of air conditioning is usually the switching of refrigerants as the industry and regulators continue to search for the next level of environmental friendliness. But the underrated A/C story that’s slowly developed during the same time period is the overall improvement of A/C systems.
Four Seasons was recently honored with the “Most Innovative New Product” award for its Deslugger compressor clutch timer during the 2014 Mobile Air Conditioning Society (MACS) Worldwide Training Event and Trade Show, held in New Orleans, La.
Leave it to the manufacturers to take a simple thing like heat and air conditioning and turn it into an electronic jungle of wiring, sensors and computer components. HVAC units have come a long way from when I started in the business. Not that I want to dwell on the past, but it might be a good idea to make sure we understand the basics before diving into the problem of today’s systems. I always feel that if I understand a system fully before doing any repair work, I’m more likely to get it right the first time.
The purpose of oil balancing is to make sure the amount of oil in the A/C system remains at the correct level. The first thing to consider when performing the process is the amount of oil contained in the replacement compressor. This can vary from a full charge of oil (8 oz./236 mL), to a half charge of oil or no oil at all. If oil is contained in the replacement compressor, it will have to be removed and reinstalled in the correct amount to properly balance the system.
A new cabin air filter is something many motorists need, but often don’t know it. The cabin air filter (CAF) is not a well-known or well-publicized filter. Close to 90% of late-model cars and trucks now come factory-equipped with a cabin air filter, but the original filters in many of these vehicles have never been changed!
The A/C compressor is a pump that compresses and circulates refrigerant within the A/C system. Some have pistons inside while others have rotating vanes on an eccentric or a pair of metal scrolls or spirals around an eccentric. Many late-model vehicles have “variable displacement” compressors that change the piston stroke to increase or decrease the volume of refrigerant flowing through the system. Some of these run continuously instead of cycling on and off like conventional A/C compressors.
Working technicians will be educated on a variety of important service and repair topics when they sign up to attend a 2014 MACS Mobile A/C Update clinic.
A classic sign of a heater core problem is when the inside of the vehicle’s windshield persistently keeps misting. Warm coolant is leaking out of the core into the vents and then condensing against the cooler surface of the windshield.
HVAC systems differ from one hybrid to the next, and some systems have used a scroll compressor, which can be powered via a belt when the engine is running, or electrically when the engine is off. Most of the newer hybrids have changed to an inverter compressor, which is a high-voltage electrical motor.
With more and more OEMs offering cabin air filters in their vehicles, Bosch says it is expanding in this fast-growing product segment with new part numbers. The Bosch Workshop Cabin Air Filter line has expanded to include 23 new part numbers that cover 17.6 million additional vehicles in North America – domestic, European and Asian – with the same fit and function as OE cabin air filters, according to the company.
Yes, but the question is when? The new refrigerant is HFO-1234yf. Its cooling performance is very close to R-134a (the refrigerant that is currently used in all new cars and trucks), but it has a much lower Global Warming Potential Rating (only 4 versus 1430 for R-134a), making HFO-1234yf a much better refrigerant in terms of its potential impact on climate change.
Honeywell has reported that SAE International has deemed its new low-global-warming-potential mobile air conditioning refrigerant – HFO-1234yf – safe for use in motor vehicles. SAE made the recommendation following an expanded and extensive evaluation.