The Top Causes of HVAC Compressor Failure in Your Volvo
The Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) compressor is an extremely important component of your Volvo. Without it, your car will be unable to produce cool air inside your cabin, rendering your air conditioning system useless. While it does not occur very often, your car’s HVAC compressor can fail. To know how you can identify and remedy this situation, we have provided the basic facts that are crucial to know about HVAC compressors.
How HVAC Compressors Work
Knowing how HVAC compressors work is critical in being able to detect future problems that might occur with it and your car’s air conditioning system as a whole. HVAC compressors use a refrigerant known as freon to produce the cold air your Volvo emits. Working in tandem with the engine of your car, the HVAC compressor takes in the gas that is produced from the freon and absorbs the hot air from the inside of your car.
As you turn on your car’s air conditioning, a plate inside of your car, known as the swashplate, moves back and forth. This movement is what causes the intake of hot air and allows for the compression to work as well. A mist is produced, which combines with the freon. Your HVAC system compresses the misty gas and after processing it, releases the cooler air into your cabin. The freon then absorbs the heat from your cabin and repeats the process once more.
Symptoms and Causes of an HVAC Compressor Failing
HVAC compressors are sturdy but are not immune to long-term problems. Here are a few symptoms your compressor might be failing or broken in your Volvo.
- Your car’s cabin is not being cooled by the air conditioning: This is the most telltale sign that your compressor is having issues. If your car’s air conditioning is not blowing cold air out, this could be a sign that your compressor is not processing the freon in your car and does not function the way it should.
- You hear loud noises from the front of your car when the air conditioning is turned on: In combination with the prior point, if you are hearing loud noises coming from the hood of your car, this could be another sign something is going on. Generally speaking, this loud noise will be produced from the compressor itself. It is likely due to a component, like the clutch or its internal bearings, not moving or working the way it should. A mechanic can take a look into mechanical problems like these for you.
As for why HVAC compressors fail, the most common reason is due to simple wear-and-tear from age and the environment it is in. As all car components will wear down, keep in mind that your HVAC compressor will need to be repaired or replaced if you have your car for a good amount of time.
How to Maintain Your HVAC Compressor
There are ways to maintain and lengthen the lifespan of your Volvo’s HVAC compressor. Here are a few things you can try:
- Make sure your car’s freon is charged. A trained mechanic can help you with this.
- Use your car’s air conditioning regularly to ensure that all of the parts are getting used and lubricated.
- Have your technician check your car’s drive belts and other electrical components, like the switches and sensors in the compressor.
Autowerks is Here to Help
We here at Autowerks are experts at what we do and can fix any issues your Volvo (or any other European car) is having. We are located in College Station, TX, and provide service to its surrounding area, including Brenham, Bryan, Caldwell, Madisonville, Navasota.
Since 1975, our family-owned, independent automotive service facility has worked on countless European cars, including many Volvo. Autowerks is the only place you need to take your Volvo if it is having any issues. We guarantee complete satisfaction with our services.
If you think that your car’s HVAC compressor might be failing, stop into our shop or give us a call. We will help you schedule an appointment for maintenance. We look forward to becoming your Volvo service and maintenance center for all your future car care needs.