HVAC Broken air conditioning system - not sure what to do?

Discussion in '7th Generation (2003-2008) [Acura TSX]' started by Galgo, Wednesday 8th Apr, 2015.

  1. Galgo Senior Member ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆

    My AC stopped working as of yesterday. Took it to be regassed at KwikFit and they said although the system was empty and got regassed, the A/C still isn't working (they didn't charge me anything). I doubt they did a leak test to be honest either (this is KwikFit we are talking about)!

    If I set the climate control in the car to "Lo" the fans come on even when the engine is off (i.e. just the ignition on). With the engine running, I can't hear the compressor clutch kicking in. Also, I noticed that there are lots of fins missing from the condenser, so I will at least need a new one of them.

    I'm not really sure what to do. Looking at the Lings website I could be looking at £1k to get a new compressor and condenser fitted. :Frown:

    In the meantime, will it do any damage using the car with the A/C not working? I mean, it won't do anything bad to the aux belt or anything will it? And is there a way to disable the A/C - should I not be using the "auto" button?

    And is there anything else I can check to fix the problem or do I need to pay Honda to check the system for me?

  2. SpeedyGee Administrator Staff Team

    England Speedy Birmingham
    Just go to the manual control screen and press A/C off.
  3. tonygw Valued Contributor ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

    Firstly (I am no AC expert!) but going to Kwik fit is never a good thing unless you know the guys who work there and trust them. They are only fitters and don't have the best reputation!

    There are plenty of AC engineers about who could diagnose the problem for you. As above, go to the manual screen and switch the AC to off so the system isn't running and only fresh airs is pumped through the vents.

    AC systems can fail in many and will probably need expert diagnosis. It could be that there is a major leak and the gas has escaped, but if you are missing fins on the condenser that is certainly issue.

    let us know how you get on.
  4. Galgo Senior Member ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆

    Thanks for the help guys.

    Today I had a garage do a leak test with dye and fill the system up with gas. They said the system is holding pressure. They also said I need a new condenser and compressor which will be at least £1k+ including labour... :Rolf:

    I decided to put my thinking cap on and decided that the problem must somehow be electrical rather than something as extreme as a dead condenser and compressor! Being the logical and methodical kind of guy that I am, my journey first started with the fuse box under the bonnet. It was to be a short journey as that is where the source of the problem is!

    Long story short, I swapped the A/C fan relay with the compressor relay. Fan no longer works, but compressor works and A/C is chucking out icy cold air into the cabin once more!

    I am happy because I found out that I don't need to spend stupid money to have a working A/C system again. But I am p****d off that a supposed garage with 30+ years experience in the trade didn't check the basics FFS. Today's little jaunt with them cost me £75 inc. VAT. Might phone them up tomorrow and tell them of my findings... Doubt I'll get any partial refund towards today's bill though.

    Anyway, I now need a new relay. The details written on it are "Mitsuba 7001 2Z12" and "Made In Vietnam." According to this page on the Lings website, I *think* the part number is 39794-SDA-A05 on there. I don't suppose anyone on here can tell me for certain?

    Also, do Honda dealers generally stock relays or is this yet another item I have to wait at least 1-2 working days for?

    When my local dealer opens up in the morning I'll give them a call. But just thought I'd update this thread and ask on here about the p/n first on the off-chance someone might know. :Smile:

    BTW - before anyone says anything, I swapped the relays back again so I still have a working fan.
  5. jd1959 Valued Contributor ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

    Ireland Zack Kilkenny
    The compressor relays are known to cause problems something about nitric acid buildup, the dealer here had several in stock and the are the same across the range, my Mobilio included. Make sure they give you the -A05 not -A03 or some other as the part has been superseded repeatedly and should be less prone to faulting again. At least it failed in the off position rather than running the compressor constantly and destroying it or at the minimum draining your battery overnight.

    Not sure about your car but many of the Honda owners in the US/elsewhere in particular Odyssey's with the large holes under the bumper have put mesh in front of the condenser to prevent stone damage, a little bit of 1/4" square welded wire sprayed black does the trick nicely when held in with a few nylon wire ties to convenient body work.

    Glad it will be a quick, easy and cheep fix.

    Galgo likes this.
  6. Galgo Senior Member ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆

    Thanks Zack! Yeah I'm chuffed I won't need to sell an arm and a leg to stay cool in my car during the summer lol

    Funny you should mention the nitric acid, I did read on some other Honda forum (think it was a Civic forum), someone opened up their dead relay and most of the insides had turned into dust!

    I had a closer look at the condenser earlier this evening, the bottom half of it (where most of the fins are missing) looks a little caved in. I can't help but wonder maybe the car was involved in a front-end collision at some point (or maybe some animal hit the front end at speed)? I know I'll have to get a new one at some point. Just glad that "some point" doesn't have to be right now!

    I'd like to have a go at replacing the condenser myself but I'm guessing I'd have to get the A/C system vacuumed first. Oh well, something to think about for the future! :Smile:
  7. Nighthawk Guest

    United Kingdom
    Glad you got it sorted in the end and put the garage diagnosis to shame as well. They say that the backyard mechanic is dying but I am not so sure, some of these so called professional garages arent that good at all and its the owners that are learning and working out what the problem is.

    You might be able to get a relay from ebay, but I would probably just call up HH and see what they can do for you and then you know you have the right one. If they have it in stock, they can send it out today for you. If its not in stock, then you will have to wait. I am waiting on some bleed nipples to arrive for the Civic, for my Japanese car, which is getting parts sent from Belgium for it :Whistle:
    Ichiban and Galgo like this.
  8. NottsBiker Top Contributor ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

    Ben Nottingham
    Last bit I ordered from HH came in under a week and was so well wrapped I couldn't beleive it was only the missing end cap from my roof rails = very good service!
    Ichiban likes this.
  9. Galgo Senior Member ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆

    Bought the relay from my local Honda dealer earlier and now I have working climate control again! Luckily they keep stock of that particular relay so I didn't have to wait for it to get ordered in.
    Nighthawk likes this.
  10. Ichiban Founder Staff Team

    England CJ Leeds
    Well done buddy :clap: