Replacing AC Compressor Clutch Unit

The air conditioner (AC) compressor clutch powers the air conditioning in most vehicles through electromagnetic and friction plates. Although they are quite sturdy, air conditioning compressor clutch problems can happen for a variety of reasons. An AC compressor clutch replacement is not a difficult task. However, if you are unskilled, take it to an auto mechanic shop and have it replaced by professionals.

How Can You Find the Right Part?

In order to get an accurate quote for an AC compressor clutch replacement part, you need the year, make, and model of the car in question. You can go to a car dealership, mom-and-pop automotive shop, or a junkyard. The cheapest option is usually a junkyard. Not all compressor clutches are the same, so be wary of taking just any model.

What Tools Are Needed?

The general tools are a set of screwdrivers, an installation tool, snap ring pliers, and a wrench set. Most automotive manuals provide detailed instructions on the tools needed. Checking your specific manual provides the most help. Tools can change depending on the specific problem your air conditioning is having. The tools for a lack of cooling are different from those that are needed if the compressor is making unusual noises.

How Do You Diagnose the Problem?

Diagnosing the problem with your compressor unit saves you from having to spend unnecessary money. Sometimes, you need not even replace the entire part. If your car runs but does not cool, it may just be a compressor failure. If your car is not cooling or running, you may need to replace or repair a broken lead wire or clutch coil. If the compressor is making strange noises but the clutch is engaged, you may have to replace the rotor in the compressor unit.

How Do You Remove the Unit?

Once the problem has been diagnosed and you have the proper tools, you can remove the compressor unit. Before removal, make sure it is emptied at an auto mechanic shop. If it is not emptied, the debris from the first unit can cause the new one to stop functioning. To remove the unit, unscrew the bolts and take it out. Pay sufficient attention to the location so that you can put it back in without an issue.

How Should You Reassemble the Unit?

To reassemble, clean all of the parts and reattach them. Pay particular attention to each bolt’s tightness to ensure there are not any gaps that could cause further problems. Reverse the removal procedure and reattach the correct cables. Reconnect the battery and refill the system with the correct fluid. Lastly, turn on the vehicle and enjoy your fixed air conditioning unit.

An AC compressor clutch replacement is not a difficult procedure, but it does take some preparation and knowledge. Carefully research the issue to find the correct problem, tools, and procedure. You may end up only having to replace the magnetic parts in the compressor. Sometimes you can replace a part in the clutch without having to remove the entire unit. Ideally, the cheapest and fastest option is one that is well researched and executed.