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Pontiac Forum: Replace entire AC system?
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  #1  
Old August 10th, 2018, 05:47 PM
Artfires Artfires is offline
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Replace entire AC system?

The air conditioning on my 03 Vibe is not working, and in getting estimates for repair, some shops are telling me that I need to replace the entire AC system if the compressor has gone bad. Something to do with metal contamination of the line and the other parts of the system? I had never heard this before, and wondering if they are full of it, or what? I'm reluctant to spend even the $150 for a diagnosis at a place that may just be trying to get me to do the most expensive repair.

Any thoughts?

Thanks in advance!
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  #2  
Old August 10th, 2018, 09:06 PM
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Most times it just a system flush to clear it out, otherwise the condenser and/or the evaporator may have to be replaced if the metal contamination is severe enough to clog the small passages in them. Being 15 years old, they are recommending it since they won't warranty it otherwise.

It's just determines how bad the compressor flooded the system with metal aka called the "black death".

Depends how much longer you want to keep the car since some years of Vibes have oil burning issues. ( recall)

My niece has one (03) in NY that was given to her by my sister ( who bought it new ) and is now thinking it's time to get rid of it.

Doug in P.R.
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Old August 11th, 2018, 12:41 PM
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so has anybody actually put gauges on the system to check the charge?
has anybody checked for a leak?
why assume from the beginning the compressor is bad if the first two steps havent been attempted?
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Old August 12th, 2018, 06:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 92 Sunbird LE View Post
Most times it just a system flush to clear it out, otherwise the condenser and/or the evaporator may have to be replaced if the metal contamination is severe enough to clog the small passages in them. Being 15 years old, they are recommending it since they won't warranty it otherwise.

It's just determines how bad the compressor flooded the system with metal aka called the "black death".

Depends how much longer you want to keep the car since some years of Vibes have oil burning issues. ( recall)

My niece has one (03) in NY that was given to her by my sister ( who bought it new ) and is now thinking it's time to get rid of it.

Doug in P.R.
Thanks for the response. No oil issues on mine. It only has 108k miles on it, so I hope to keep it for some time. I've just had other things tapping my funds and don't want to sink deeper.
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Old August 12th, 2018, 06:59 PM
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so has anybody actually put gauges on the system to check the charge?
has anybody checked for a leak?
why assume from the beginning the compressor is bad if the first two steps havent been attempted?
I haven't actually had any diagnostics done yet, other than myself checking the fuses and such. Those seem fine. I'm just trying to get an idea of a worse case scenario, and to compare what local shops charge. The only way to compare is to ask each shop about a specific procedure, and some say they can do just the compressor, and some say they have to do the whole system. Seems like the warranty offered will be the big difference between those. That, and about a thousand dollars.
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Old August 13th, 2018, 09:42 AM
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so you are not going to the shops and just telling them the AC doesnt work? You are going in right off the bat asking how much it would cost to replace the compressor?
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Old August 13th, 2018, 11:30 AM
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so you are not going to the shops and just telling them the AC doesnt work? You are going in right off the bat asking how much it would cost to replace the compressor?
I'm just calling to get quotes and discuss possibilities. How else can I compare between shops?
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Old August 13th, 2018, 01:28 PM
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You have no shop that normally services the car?
You have no acquaintances who can recommend a shop?
Any shop with ASE certified mechanics can tell you whether you are low on refrigerant and determine where the leak is.
You will get nowhere shopping on the phone.
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Old September 3rd, 2018, 04:00 AM
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Could be simple as low on R34.. It's NOT a sealed system and it will leak. Some systems sooner other much later, like yours...

You need gauges put of the system...
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