1996 Olds Ciera A/C

happsMarch 25, 2007

I just had the air conditioning system tested on my 1996 Olds Ciera at an auto repair shop since it was blowing cool but not cold air. They detected a leak and think it's coming from the compressor. They injected a dye into the system and told me to come back in a week's time to find out the exact location of the leak. They also added a pound of freon and said there's no way to know how long it would last (could be a week or could be 6 months). Assuming the car needs a new air conditioning compressor or the leak is coming from the compressor and can't be repaired, what would be wrong with just adding freon every two months or so vs replacing the compressor at a cost of $1200. Does a leaking compressor get worse and explode eventually? If the compressor is leaking from the seal, can the seal be repaired? They also said it's not unusual for GM cars to be needing new compressors at 60k miles, because age is a factor. I never had problems with my late 80's GM cars' ac units when they had low miles (under 60k) and were 10 years old. Maybe GM units took a turn for the worse in the 90's or perhaps R134 units aren't as good as the old R12. I've read that R134 systems are under a lot more pressure than R12 units.

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1st, it sounds like so far they suspect a leak, not detected one, so don't panic yet.

2nd, while you're waiting, call your local NAPA or other parts store to find out the cost of a new or reconditioned compressor. $1200 seems way high to me, but I don't know.

3rd, a shop isn't going to keep pumping refridgerant into a system they know is leaking. Not sure they can without breaking the law.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2007 at 7:04PM
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