Author Topic: "You need a new A/C compressor"  (Read 1934 times)


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 17
  • Location: UK
  • 29, aiming to be semi-retired at 40 with kids
    • MinMax UK
"You need a new A/C compressor"
« on: July 30, 2013, 08:16:19 AM »
We have recently had a heatwave here in the UK. Don't laugh, sustained 28C+ sends folks crazy over here.

My 13 yr old Volvo stopped blowing cold A/C last year but I didn't care, I'm healthy and the average temp over here does not normally warrant it.

Anyway, this heatwave hit during a time where I was using the car a lot for business commutes. Turning up to meetings with a sweaty back was getting old so I decided to look at fixing it.

I swung by the stealers/dealers and asked them to take a look, free diag I thought. Result: I need a new compressor, re-gas, oh, and your internal cabin fan is on the way out. Total price, 600+vat (20% here in the UK!).

I politely declined and returned to the batcave and got my research on.

One week later:

- Sourced local cash in hand A/C technician. Lives around the corner, cut a deal for 20 leak test and 20 re-gas. He even drove to my home.
- Found a common fault on my model of Volvo where the cabin air filter gets blocked and reduces blower strength. Ordered one off ebay for 7 delivered (how do these companies make money??)... fitted it myself after following this YouTube guide.



  • Stubble
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  • Posts: 112
Re: "You need a new A/C compressor"
« Reply #1 on: July 30, 2013, 08:59:01 AM »
Nice! I thought there was a problem with mine too recently, but turned out it was just the blower motor. $30 and 10 minutes to replace. As a mechanic friend said to me once 'at e end of the day it's a bunch of nuts and bolts'. Of course that's a simplification, but it's amazing how many things you can fix on your car with a few basic tools.


  • Pencil Stache
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  • Posts: 717
  • Location: Central Illinois
Re: "You need a new A/C compressor"
« Reply #2 on: July 30, 2013, 09:31:07 AM »
I had the A/C compressor "go out" on my Volvo. Turns out it was the ("non-serviceable") clutch. Found out from forums and other information that there are shims that can be removed, easily, to restore function. Took maybe 20 minutes to fix after months of delaying due to the original bill (over $1000) anticipated. I agree it's all just nuts and bolts, and sometimes mechanics are master extortionists.


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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  • Posts: 55
Re: "You need a new A/C compressor"
« Reply #3 on: August 02, 2013, 08:48:24 PM »
I was given a similar A/C compressor story. 

The A/C in my Toyota broke a few years back.  A Toyota dealership mechanic tried to sell me on a new A/C compressor for $1,100.  He even charged me around $100 for the diagnosis.  I declined the have the work done because it was so much money. Not long after that a friend's mechanic husband took a look at my car.  I don't remember what he did to fix it, but I know he considered it a simple fix.  It has worked very well ever since.

That was the last time I took my car to be repaired at the dealership. I should have demanded the diagnostic fee back from the dealership, but decided to classify it as a stupid tax.