Why Does My Car’s AC Get Warm at Idle?


Car AC – The Basics:

Before we get into “Why Does My Car’s AC Get Warm at Idle?”, we need to cover the basics of how your car’s AC works.

The Air Conditioning System in your car uses a refrigerant (Freon) to remove heat from the interior. The system consists of a compressor, condenser, evaporator, expansion device, and an accumulator.

The compressor compresses the refrigerant into a liquid. As the gas gets compressed, it heats up, and the high pressure forces the refrigerant to travel through the system to the condenser. 

The condenser features a section of coils that the cool air from outside passes over, thus transferring the heat from the compressed gas to the air. 

The refrigerant then goes through the dryer to get rid of moisture contaminants. Once purified, the compressed refrigerant passes through the expansion device, where it is stripped of its pressure and allowed to expand as it enters the evaporator, cooling the evaporator.

Your car’s blower motor blows air through the now-cold evaporator, and out the vents.

Why Does My Car’s AC Get Warm at Idle? – Improper Refrigerant Level

As you can see, the refrigerant does quite a bit of work in your car’s AC system, and the system requires the optimal amount of refrigerant to work at it’s best. Too much or not enough, and you may notice yourself wondering “Why Does My Car’s AC Get Warm at Idle?” or, worse yet, “Why Does My Car’s AC Blow Hot?’

Luckily, the fix for this is relatively cheap and easy. With an AC Service, the technician will recover the Freon currently left in the system, vacuum the system down to remove impurities and contaminants, and recharge the system with the perfect amount of Freon.

Condenser Airflow Issues

The condenser is responsible for cooling the heated, compressed refrigerant so it can later become cold refrigerant gas. It sits in front of your radiator, and uses outside airflow to do this. At idle, the vehicle’s cooling fans create the necessary airflow. So, if there is a problem with one or more of the fans, or the condenser is dirty/damaged, it may not see enough airflow through it to do it’s job properly.

Overheating or Other Engine Issues

If your car is overheating, the condenser may not be able to cool the refrigerant as well due to the excess heat from the radiator. Likewise, if there are other engine issues, your car’s computer may begin to turn off unnecessary features (like your air conditioning) in order to reduce the load on the engine.

Whatever’s causing your car’s AC to get warm, call Ed’s BnB Auto Repair in Mesa at (480) 641 – 6055 to get an appointment today! That way, we can get it looked at and help you stay cool!

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