Rear air

cocoonerDecember 21, 2007

Hi there. My husband and I are considering the purchase of a used 2002 15 passenger Dodge 3500 extended van for our business. It's located some 400 miles away in New England so before we go to see it we'd want to be reasonably sure that it would meet our needs.

It is being sold by the original owners who had a school. So its history is better known than a lot of vehicles.

I'm told that the front air conditioning works well, but the rear air conkked out late last summer. The dealer says that the repair for the rear air would be 3K. My question is, could the broken rear air affect the front at all? We do not really need the rear air but want the front to work.


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The front air, if it still works won't keep up with the heat that get's generated in the entire interior. It's likely the heater won't as well. Most dual systems are both heat and AC. Unless you are going to wall off the rear of the vehicle, I suspect it could be pretty uncomfortable at times without both systems operating fully.

BTW a "school" van should be well maintained, but could have many miles on it, and even more hours of operating time because of lot's of idling, and stop and go use. I'd advise a thorough check at a shop where it is at pre-purchase.

    Bookmark   December 21, 2007 at 9:43AM
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The mileage is around 40,000 which is low. But I hadn't thought about the idling time.

The maintenance was done at the dealer and they do have the records. I wonder what could be wrong so that the estimate would be 3K to fix it. I suppose I could speak with the dealer's service dept. about it.


    Bookmark   December 21, 2007 at 9:54AM
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A Independent MVAC specialty shop would be your best bet to have the rear AC checked. Typically (not sure on a dodge van)these systems will utilize a TXV valve for the rear air and a simple orfice tube for the front. If your rear air is not working it could just be a problem with TXV (sensing bulb has become detached from the vapor line) or perhaps something simple such as the the diverter door inside the unit, a qualified independent Motor Vehicle Air Conditioning repair tech could diagnose this rather quickly. Most Dealers have fresh out of school freckle faced kids or old grumpy hard headed techs that I would not want to work on my dang toaster oven much less my late model AC on my ride.

    Bookmark   December 23, 2007 at 12:04PM
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