Friday, October 15, 2010

People I have encountered so far in regards to my air con services.

A little glimpse of what kind of customers that I have come across in the negative aspect towards my services.

1) "I have driven cars for more than 20yrs. Owned each of them. Never in my life heard that air con must service. This is a boo thing. I am not going to get it done. Period."

2) "Where got oil one?"

3) "You sure or not?"

4) "Air con not cold? Just top up gas can liao."

5) "Don't want lah. Wait do liao alot of problem can happen..."

6) "Just pump the oil treatment, enough already."

7) "Compressor no need service. Spoil liao just change. Air con then like new."

Many more.

Since day one, air con compressor has oil in the system in order to have moving parts lubricate. The oil also lines the walls of the pipings when the gas moves through the system. The oil lubricates the system everywhere it goes.

This oil will wear and will be worn out like engine oil in the engine. Once the life of the oil is gone, the oil will no longer lubricate the system and it actually turns against the car owner. Moving parts will wear out faster and a compressor failure is a matter of time.

If you are mechanically inclined, then you will understand what does 'volumetric efficiency' means.

With the oil and just enough gas in the system, the compressor will use min. effort to run and it will give you the coldest possible air in the cabin. When you have too much gas, it does not only cause compressor premature failure. Too much gas in the system, air con will not be cold too.

Why do we top up gas? It is deal to leak.

How come got leak? No system is perfect and leakage is normal and so topping up gas does help in such instances.

If your system has no leak and you top up gas... probably no gas top up at all or too much gas in the system. Sometimes, when you top up too much gas, the serviceman actually reduces the volume of gas in your system to get your air con cold.

What is treatment oil? It is an addictive that enhances the oil in the system for better lubrication. If you always use the treatment oil but not service the system, you will have a overcharged system with too much oil in system. Air con system will become intermittent. Hot cold hot cold is such symptoms.

Would the servicing cause the climate control to fail? NO. The servicing only flushed out your oil and recharge with new oil and gas. It has nothing to do with your climate or electrical control system. If it fails, your climate control module is faulty.

I have a client changed out his air con compressor twice. Each last only for a yr or less. Air con is only cold for about 3months and then performance lost. Until it is unbearable, change another unit but a recon unit.

Recon unit is fine but it is the installer who does the swap that could give you a lot of problem. This client has extremely dirty oil in his recon system when I flushed the oil out. Check out the evo's photos. Client mentioned that his system is intermittent. Cold day cold, hot day hot. Sometimes cold day also warm air. Kinda like kana 4D when the air con is cold... oh well.

I am not saying that if I flushed and refresh the system will help eliminate the problems. It all depends on the recon unit condition as well. If the recon unit is still good to use, you will most likely to have a cold air con to stay with. Like most of the cases, recon unit works well after flush if the recon unit is still good. If recon unit is not good, even after flushing the air con will still be bad.

How do we know if the compressor unit is good or bad? Only the installer knows and sometimes he does not. End up it depends greatly on your luck.

So if you service your air con compressor yearly, you are likely to enjoy cold cold air con throughout your ownership of your car.

As new technology progresses, air con compressor unit normally becomes smaller and uses less oil but less oil also means that the oil will turn bad faster. Engine heat remains the same most of the time or even hotter at times, but less oil and smaller compressor meaning more loads are experienced by the smaller unit. Regular servicing is critical to keep the smaller unit alive.

Less oil in the system means that the production plant will get to enjoy lots of savings. A typical system holds between 100-250cc of oil. Newer and smaller compressor uses less oil like sometimes 60-80cc only. It is a huge savings but car owners would not know that they will have to service their system more frequently. Car owners will bear the costs for maintenance and that is why cars are cheaper to buy nowadays for some brands as alot of parts are swapped out to save costs.

JDM and EDM have different OMV. Why is it so even for the same model? Smaller cc engine car can have higher OMV than bigger cc cars. Thank about it.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Recon's Perils!!!

I have been working on car after car and the greatest problem encountered by owners so far is those reconditioned compressor unit.

There is nothing wrong with the compressor unit in terms of installation and gas charging. The problem lies with the amount of oil that is supposed to be top up too.

Common findings:

1) No new oil. (Extremely dirty oil flushed out.)
2) Oil treatment used instead. (At least got use oil but normally overfilled the system.)
3) Too much gas.
4) Not enough gas.
5) System not flushed but still charged up with fresh oil. (Overfilled system.)
6) Not enough oil in system.

The list still goes on and on...

"This is the third compressor that I have in my car..."
"Got oil in system? Something new!"
"Air con compressor can be serviced, really?"

If you feel that your air con system is behaving strange lately, sometimes it is already too late.

So far, cars with the most times of compressor changed are... EVOs and EVOs, then WRXs.

If you have a monster in the bonnet, you better keep your air con check'ED! Mitsubishi tops my lists now. I have only worked on a few EVOs and almost all have recon'ed units. Subaru is not uncommon but don't add to the stats.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Another 'RECON''ed air con with such problem.

After 2nd flushing. More 'black particles' are flushed out.

After 1st flushing.

I worked on another car yesterday that has a air con compressor swapped out for a 'recon'ed unit. I believe the swap was less than half a year ago.

Complaints are air con came on and off, off at traffic lights, etc...

Upon flushing, I realized lots of black particles are found in the flushed out oil. During optimization, the system seemed 'choked' but it was not as bad before work.

Indeed, after flushing the whole system a second time, more 'black particles' were removed. This is the worst case I had ever come across to date.

Finally, the system is able to be optimized and system runs fine.

Dear friends, if you are diagnosed with air con compressor failure by someone, please make sure you know where is your car being checked. With regular servicing, your air con compressor would normally out last the numbers of years that you are going to be with your ride.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Very bad oil with lots of black particles.

Just before the holidays last week, this beautiful EVO IX came in for servicing. During the routine checks, the air con compressor oil was found to be very dirty.

According to the owner, his air con compressor was just been replaced with a recon unit. Apparently, the air con system was not flushed. Upon flushing the system, the old oil has lots of tiny black particles floating around.

These tiny particles would soon choke the thermal expansion valve within and there goes another day in the workshop for rectification and another big bill.

Car owners are advised to have their air con system flushed yearly or every 40,000km.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

7 more horses on wheels!

After much explaining about how the air con compressor eats up your horses during a hot day, I finally have time to go test my own car to see if I have retrieved any horses back to wheel power.

Same setup and nothing has changed, only air con optimization.

302whp turns 309whp!

No matter what, the air con compressor will still require much horses to run the system in the range up to 20% with respect to optimization done or not, oil condition, any contamination of refrigerant or air in system, too much oil, too much gas, too little oil, etc.

That works out slightly over SGD30 per horse for my case.

Thank you for the valuable feedbacks my friends. Many said the car feels lighter to roll out and the engine sounds less effort required for air con too.

Now at least I have some figures for my own car. ;)

Monday, August 30, 2010

Another 'SPECIAL' Encounter

I was working on a Subaru Legacy GT Wagon today. Apparently, the air con system behaved in a peculiar way.

The air was cold for a brief moment and then hot air instead. After hot air, cold air next. It went on and on.

After flushing, then we found the cause to the strange encounter. The system had too much oil in the system, twice as per normal! Furthermore, the condition of the compressor oil was also BAD.

What happen when there is too much oil in the air con system? The expansion valve will get choked and air con performance could become intermittent, just as mentioned earlier.

As per owner, the system was never serviced before. Car came out straight from factory and never once was the air con system touched. His feedback about his air con system was just as mentioned too. He thought that it could be normal somehow BUT IT IS SURELY NOT!

Too much oil in a system will make the compressor 'choked' and same applies to the rest of the parts in the system.

If you do encounter such similar situation, go to your trusted workshop for rectification before it is too late. Otherwise, you know who you could reach too.


Touched up my car's air con after major servicing.

After major servicing was completed on my car, I went on to touch up my air con system. The result is really great.

Some asked why is it that my car has such result.

Results vary with different made and also different made of air con compressor. Not only these, the climate control system together with the thermostat would also contribute to the final result.

Now my car feels even more like turbo'less'. Some called it 'VTec'. LOL

Oh, my ride went through the lambda treatment as well. Now everything seems so SMOOOOOOTHHHH..... ;)