What's equally bad as having a bad day is driving a car with a faulty air conditioning system. Car owners with faulty air conditioning are mostly frustrated and uncomfortable, just like anyone having a bad day. Perhaps, you are in this situation where your car’s air conditioning system isn't blowing cold air, and you are wondering why. People often suspect that the car's cabin air filter is clogged. But that might not even be the cause. Could other reasons be responsible?
Read on to find out how air conditioners work and why your system isn't blowing cold air.
How Do Air Conditioners Work?
Air conditioners work in a way that focuses on absorbing the heat in a room and dispelling cold air instead. So, it's essential first to learn how they operate to understand why your air conditioner isn't blowing cold air.
Every air conditioner uses a liquid refrigerant that passes over the evaporator coils to absorb the heat in a room. This process allows the evaporator coils to become cooler. After this, the air conditioning unit's fan blows across the cool coils to disperse chilled air into the car through the air duct. While this happens, the condenser releases the hot air, earlier collected, into the outside air. The fan blows over this to ensure the hot air keeps dissipating outside.
Finally, the air conditioner has a cabin air filter that helps remove particles from the air and a thermostat to regulate the amount of cool air in the room.
5 Reasons Your AC Isn't Blowing Cold Air
1. A Dirty or Clogged Cabin Air Filter
A cabin air filter is a vital part of any car cooling system. It helps to ensure that the cool air dispensed is free from particles that can make riding in your car unpleasant. This is even more essential for people with allergies as harmful air particles can affect them, especially with the windows closed.
When a cabin air filter is dirty or clogged, it’s difficult for cold air to pass through the air ducts. This dirt clogs and obstructs the free flow of cool air. This is why you have hot air instead of cold air. In such cases, you will need to replace your cabin air filter.
2. Issues With the Evaporator Coils or Condenser
Cabin air filters help ensure that your air conditioner's evaporator coils and condenser are in tip-top shape. However, wear in these parts is unavoidable, even with a cabin air filter replacement. This is because your evaporator coils and condenser are subject to moisture from time to time. The moisture exposes the evaporator coils to problems with mildew and mold.
3. Air Duct Leaks
It's normal for machine parts to get worn out after using them continuously for an extended period. The same thing applies to air ducts. Over time, air ducts could start leaking, lose insulation or become loose. This causes all the cool air that has been gathered to escape outside instead of blowing into your car. In such cases, all you receive is the hot air collected by the evaporator coils and refrigerant.
4. Thermostat Issues
In other cases, the problem might be just as simple as not setting the thermostat correctly in your car. Your thermostat determines the air temperature that is released through the vents in the cabin of your car. So, if the air coming from your vents is warmer than you would like , check the temperature controls on your car’s dashboard. You may find that the controls are automatically set on heat. You will then need to reset it to auto or cool.
If this issue persists, the problem might be with the thermostat itself. After prolonged usage, your thermostat could become overheated or develop sludge. When this happens, you may have to replace it.
5. Refrigerant Leaks
Refrigerant leaks can prevent your vehicle's air conditioner from blowing cold air. Every air conditioner has a certain amount of refrigerant stored for it to operate. This usually lasts ten to fifteen years, depending on how regularly you use your air conditioning system. However, the refrigerant can get exhausted faster when there are leaks. Refrigerant leaks are usually a result of cracks or holes in your evaporator coils. When this occurs, an air conditioner cannot produce cool air, and you get hot air instead.If you’re having issues with your air conditioner, a good first step is to check your cabin air filter. PUREFLOW® cabin air filters are uniquely designed and come with installation instructions. Changing your cabin air filter may just solve your AC issues resulting in cool, refreshing and clean air inside your car.