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Discussion Starter #1
Generally, I don't use my A/C alot, and it always has instantly gotten cold & worked like the day it was new. However lately, it has been intermittently working. I can leave my house with it on and it will be cold. Park it in a lot and drive home an hour later and it will not get cold at all (IE it's cooler to go with the windows down than the A/C blowing hot air).
first I was thinking it might have to do with the car sitting in a hot parking lot and it just taking longer to cool off, but my garage is currently over 90F and just went out and started it and with the A/C cranked it is too cold to sit in within a minute.
is there some cut-off on the A/C system that prevents it from operating when over a certain temperature?

Since it (occasionally) still gets cold, I don't expect the freon is the problem.
Since I am the original owner, and rarely use the A/C, I would expect the compressor hardly has any wear vs it's available lifespan.

Looking for ideas on how to track down the problem so I can take my car out of the garage while it's 105+ outside without feeling like I'm in some ****-hole casino city in the South of Nevada :ty:
 

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First thing I would try - start the engine, turn the air on, and if it's not getting cold, pop the hood and watch the compressor (unfortunately it's kind of hard to see in these - think alternator but near the radiator). You should see the center part of the compressor kicking on, running a while, then shutting off (the pulley will run while the engine is on, but the clutch only engages the compressor when you're using it). If it is kicking on but the air isn't getting cold, you probably need to take it to a shop. If it isn't kicking on at all, it's likely an electrical problem or possibly the clutch.

I suspect an electrical problem is keeping the compressor from kicking on. You might want to check that the connector on the compressor is tight...with the engine OFF of course.
 

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When I had a Contour it did this same thing and it was the pressure switch. It's easy to replace, IIRC it's on the top of the condenser.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
so went out and started it, it currently is getting cold (so probably will have to do this again when it is not working obviously), can see it spinning (I assume the clutch is the outer part with the three knobby things?) flip the a/c off and back on, and can hear it and the change in idle sound normal. the wiring harness looks normal too.
will look next time it is not cooling, now that I know what it should look like when cooling ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
took the car out today, and AC worked great leaving the house. After parking it and starting it back up, no AC. So looked when I got home, and the clutch is not spinning when the AC is turned on.

anyone have a photo of the pressure switch spgoode mentioned?
 

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While the clutch is not spinning, get a long pry bar any wave it in front of the knobby things(lol) if the pry bar sticks to it, try giving it a jump start by pushing down quickly on the front knob. you wanna give it a quick tap so you can remove the pry bar from that area so it doesn't hit the clutch when it gets going. If this works check to make sure its blowing cold. It sounds to me like your coil is going bad and is not magnetizing the clutch enough. I don't think you can get this part separate from the dealer anymore so you would have to get a loaded compressor unless you check for an aftermarket replacement.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
i obviously don't know all there is about ac, but... would think since it does run fine from a cold start, that's not the issue... and like I said earlier, I rarely use ac, so doubt it has much wear/tear on the mechanical parts.
 

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i obviously don't know all there is about ac, but... would think since it does run fine from a cold start, that's not the issue... and like I said earlier, I rarely use ac, so doubt it has much wear/tear on the mechanical parts.
Well I'm a certified A/C tech for a Lincoln/Mercury dealership and have seen this many times. Your right, it can very well be something else, this is just a quick way to find your problem. Oh, and the coil is electrical, not mechanical.;)
 

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you ever get a fix Goldie? My cougar does the same thing. But it happens when I'm driving! I'll drive, it cools, then outta nowhere, it gets hot and muggy while the blower is at full speed. It messes with my RPMs too!
 

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Hey, Gold One - something happened to me recently that made me think of this thread. After I picked up my car from some service, I had no A/C at all for several minutes and miles. It didn't kick on until I got on the throttle hard (well, after I let off the throttle, of course). I suspect the switch that cuts off the A/C when you floor it stuck, but it hasn't happened since. When it's not operating, have you tried flooring it and seeing if it comes on then?
 

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I do that!

If im driving, and it gets hot while the blower is going full blast, I rev up the engine as much as 5-7 RPMS for a bit and then it kicks in

Or if im stoped at a light, and it gets hot while the blower is going full blast, and Im idleing at 1-3 RPMS, i try to stall the engine, and then it kicks in...

weird huh?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Hey, Gold One - something happened to me recently that made me think of this thread. After I picked up my car from some service, I had no A/C at all for several minutes and miles. It didn't kick on until I got on the throttle hard (well, after I let off the throttle, of course). I suspect the switch that cuts off the A/C when you floor it stuck, but it hasn't happened since. When it's not operating, have you tried flooring it and seeing if it comes on then?
I've not tried that, mostly because I rarely floor it :rofl: but might try it out.
 
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