Question about 1999 Chevrolet Malibu

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A/c switches from recirculate to external

Bought this car used for my son. a/c switches from recirculate to external & you can hear the compressor kicking on & off. put gauges on it freon levels all o.k. Could it possibly be the control head.

Help
Thanks
Jack

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  • real03fan Aug 01, 2008

    sounds good any other ideas???

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Sounds like the accumulator also it will cause this

Posted on Aug 01, 2008

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Yes, and it could also be the accumulator.

Posted on Jul 29, 2008

  • Ryan Rogers
    Ryan Rogers Aug 01, 2008

    There is a clutch assembly in the compressor that allows the outer pulley to turn when the engine is running. When the compressor kicks in the clutch engages, working the compressor. Sometimes you can hear the compressor kicking in or trying to kick in, but the clutch doesn't actually turn the compressor. Actually look at the compressor when it kicks in to see if the inner part is engaged by the clutch and turning. If it isn't then the clutch is shot and the compressor will need to be replaced. I'm still leaning towards the accumulator.

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Did you use the proper gauges to measure the high side and low side pressures as you added the 134 (I assume not Freon)? If not, it's possible you put too much 134 on the high side and either you kicked a breaker for the pressure or you just burned up the compressor.

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Check your fuse for the A/C. If it is okay then you need to locate the low pressure cutout switch and temporarily put a jumper in the connector. If the clutch kicks in, then you need to check the Freon pressure on the oblong black tank or hose directly adjacent to this tank.

Do not run the compressor very long with the bypass.connected or the compressor can burn up. However the compressor must turn to build pressure from the remaining Freon.

If you are lucky the Freon will only need to be topped off. This means the Low pressure switch did its job of preventing damage. Add Freon with a Sealer and you may close the leak that let out the Freon. Some of the gauges are not expensive, and some cans have a one-time use gauge on them.

The low pressure switch can also get weak and shut your system off early. Its a screw off-screw on part and easy to replace. Then if your compressor is noisy after working on this you may need an oil charge. That would mean you had a substantial leak and you lost the lubricant for the compressor. But you may be lucky and get by just by adding Freon.

I wanted to be informative in case the easy steps do not work for you so you can try several things. Good Luck on your repair.

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