Especially when you live in an area where the summer months are hot, your car will become an oven, making it unbearable as you drive down the road. Because of this, you depend on your car's air conditioning system to keep you comfortable.
However, if you have noticed that your car's A/C is no longer blowing cool air, you may wonder whether the issue is low coolant or a mechanical problem. Below are a couple of sounds for which you should listen that mean that the compressor in your vehicle's A/C system is failing.
1. You Notice a Grinding Noise as Soon as You Turn on Your Car's Air Conditioner
One sound for which you should be on the lookout when trying to determine if the problem with your car's air conditioner is a failing compressor is a grinding noise. When you first flip the switch to turn on the A/C, you may hear a grind that stops as soon as you switch it off.
If you are hearing this sound, the most likely cause of it is bad bearings within the compressor. A vehicle A/C technician can determine whether this is the case so that the bearings can be replaced and lubricated.
2. You Hear a Swooshing Sound When the A/C Is on While Noticing a Loss in Engine Power
Another noise that would indicate a serious issue with the compressor is a swooshing sound. This sound will resemble the one you hear when you accidentally suck up a sock in a vacuum cleaner tube.
Along with this noise, you will also notice a loss in engine power while the air conditioner is running. The sound and the loss of power are caused by the clutch becoming stuck within the air conditioner's compressor. Since a stuck clutch cannot be repaired, the service you take to get the A/C system fixed will need to replace the compressor.
When the compressor in your car's A/C system starts to fail, it will not be long before the system will stop blowing cool air entirely. When you notice a loss in power that is accompanied by a grinding or swooshing sound, you need to have the compressor inspected as soon as possible. Make an appointment with a shop that provides car air conditioning services. A technician can verify that the compressor is failing so that they can take steps to fix or replace it.