How to Be Sure Your A/C Is Performing at Its Best

Sun Auto Service Expert, published on 01/15/2016

Even when the temperature is freezing outside, the sun beating down on a dark interior in a vehicle can cause it to heat up rather quickly. Whether it’s January or July, it’s important your car’s A/C is performing at its best. To do this, you must keep up with the recommended maintenance program for your car’s air conditioning system.

Get an A/C Inspection Annually

The most important step to ensuring your vehicle’s air conditioner works properly all year is to get an annual inspection. The best time to have an inspection done is in the spring. This way, you can be sure your A/C system will work properly throughout the hottest months of the year.

Your car’s air conditioner will typically have five major components: compressor, condenser, accumulator, expansion valve and evaporator. A proper inspection will consist of several points, including:

  • Visual inspection of the components
  • Analysis of the outlet temperature to determine cooling performance
  • Inspection of system pressure readings
  • Use of ultraviolet dye and a black light to check for leaks

Keep the Fluids Topped Off

If you notice your air conditioner doesn’t feel as cool as it once did, you should take it to a professional to have the fluid levels checked. In most cases, the system just needs more refrigerant. The refrigerant is a special mixture that turns your vehicle’s hot air into cool air.

Keep the System from Drying Out

Even if your car isn’t one that gets warm in the winter months due to the sun, you should still turn on your air conditioner during the winter. Doing so for a few minutes every couple of weeks will keep the system from drying out due to not being used. As an added benefit, it acts as a dehumidifier for windows.

Clean Your Car’s Vents

Just like your air conditioner at home, your car’s air vents need to stay clear of dust and debris to remain efficient. Between inspections, be sure to keep your air vents clean. You can avoid a lot of the dirt altogether by not eating or smoking in the car, but of course this isn’t always possible, especially if you do a lot of traveling. To ensure the most professional job, take it to a repair shop for cleaning.

Keeping your car’s air conditioning system running well isn’t just about comfort. Proper maintenance of all of your vehicle’s components ensures its longevity. Use these tips if you want your car to run in top condition for as long as possible. If you have any questions about your A/C, ask the experts at Sun Auto Service.