HVAC, Heating and Cooling Systems & Repair
Cool off or keep warm with a properly operating HVAC System in your vehicle.
Do you know how your engine combusts? The spark plugs inside your engine ignite the fuel in each engine cylinder to propel the vehicle down the road, and each time the fuel is ignited, there's a controlled explosion. A 4-cylinder vehicle traveling at 50mph produces 4000 of these explosions every 60 seconds - and that creates an enormous amount of heat. If this heat isn't controlled, it could destroy the engine in just a couple of minutes. The entire purpose of the cooling system within your vehicle is to control the high temperatures produced by the engine and to prevent it from overheating.
Both the Heating System and Air Conditioning System of your vehicle are incredibly important. All of these components are parts of the HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning) System of your vehicle. Air Conditioning components can dry out and crack over time. The Heating System needs regular check up to catch leaky valves and blockages early. A properly operational HVAC System can keep you comfortable at any temperature.
Air Conditioning Systems begin with the Compressor which functions like a pump and forces refrigerant through the A/C System. Refrigerant flow is restricted and monitored through the Expansion Valve, lowering the pressure and temperature of the refrigerant as it passes through. The Radiator is the core of your cooling system by reducing the heat generated from coolant circulating through the cooling system. Keeping the Radiator clean and leak-free, filled with coolant and without blockages keeps it performing well.
The process is actually rather simple; a liquid coolant is circulated through the engine and then out through the Radiator, where it can be cooled by the air stream arriving through the front grill. The cooling system is responsible to maintaining a constant temperature inside of the engine, regardless of the temperature outside. When an engine runs cold, your fuel economy and emissions will suffer. If your engine runs too hot, it can actually self destruct from overuse when it's overheating.
Air and moisture are the two worst things for an automotive Air Conditioning System. Broken and damaged seals and hoses can allow Freon to escape and mix condensation and oxygen with the refrigerant, producing a corrosive acid that destroys the A/C System.
The most common source of impeded air flow is broken or leaking seals in the system. These seals are found on the Core Case, the Blower Hoses, and Evaporator Core alike, and if any of them break or open up, they diminish air flow through the ventilation system. This can compromise the entire A/C System. Air cannot flow easily through the system if the A/C fan doesn't work properly or dies. Although rarely, the Blower Hose can actually break loose from the blower unit and stop airflow. Accumulations of mold and mildew in the Evaporator Core arise from residual moisture from the cooling process, and often affects the airflow reaching air vents into the vehicle cabin.
Moisture will quickly and efficiently destroy a vehicle Air Conditioning System.
The Heating System consists of a Heater Core that behaves like a small Radiator behind the dash that draws heat out of the engine and into itself, attempting to lower the overall temperature of the engine. The Heater Blower Motor pushes warm air through the vents into the cabin, which is controlled through the buttons and dials on the dashboard. If the Resistor dies, the speed of airflow cannot be changed on the blower motor without replacement.
Not properly servicing and maintaining heating elements can allow the engine to overheat and severely damage key parts of your HVAC System. Bad connectors can stop a heater blower motor, even when it's not damaged. It may stop working because it's become stuck or jammed. If a fluid leak damages the heater blower motor, it may need to replaced at the same time the leak is resolved. Not only does the blower motor provide hot air in cold weather, it circulates air through the entire vehicle. All components of the Heating System should be inspected before repair or replacement.
- WHY ISN'T MY AIR CONDITIONING BLOWING COLD AIR?
The most common reason A/C Systems stop blowing cold air is that the refrigerant is low. This is an easy fluid fix - you may simply need a Refrigerant refill. Another culprit is an A/C leak somewhere in the system. Freon leaks are caused by a failed O-Ring, seal, or hose. Vacuum leaks produce the same results. A clog in the refrigerant charging hose or expansion tube, a failed compressor or compressor clutch, blower motor and resistor, and a damaged condensor can all stop cold air from flowing through the vents. A leak opens the system up to moisture and extreme damage like the "black death". Simply stop in to your local Auto Repair Shop and have your A/C System inspected.
- WHAT DOES THE "BLACK DEATH" MEAN FOR A CAR?
When a technicians refers to an A/C System as having the "Black Death" it means that an issue in the system has caused widespread problems destroyed the entire Air Conditioning system and compromising the HVAC System of your car. "Black Death" starts with a breakdown of the refrigerant in the Compressor, whcih starts to wear away quickly. This creates small, sharp, metal fragments from the compressor that travel through the rest of A/C System, destroying hoses and other key parts. Airflow suffers, no cold air is produced in the cabin, and before long, the entire Air Conditioning system requires replacement.
This is an avoidable automotive expense with simple A/C Performance Exam to catch early signs of the "Black Death" and repair them.