Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls
  1. Home
  2. Articles
  3. Does Running My AC in the Summer Keep My Engine Cooler?

Does Running My AC in the Summer Keep My Engine Cooler?

summer AC

When you engage your air conditioning in your car, it is usually summertime and hot outside. Air conditioning serves to remove heat from the inside of your vehicle by circulating a refrigerant through the evaporator core in your dashboard, and blowing the cooled air into the cabin with the blower motor. Many people believe that air conditioning also cools your engine when it is engaged but the opposite is true.

How air conditioning affects your engine

Air conditioning actually creates more engine heat in the engine compartment as there is more strain on the engine to operate the AC compressor. The engine’s serpentine belt drives the AC compressor, which requires more energy from the engine. You may actually notice a slight decrease in performance and fuel economy when the air conditioning is engaged.

When the AC is running, you’ll likely hear the engine fan running louder. Either the fan operates at a higher speed to combat the extra engine heat generated, or there may be a secondary air conditioning fan that runs to provide extra cooling. It is triggered by the cooling fan module or resistor to operate when the air conditioning is turned on.

If you notice the engine temperature climbing higher than normal when the air conditioning is turned on, it can be a sign of a problem with the cooling fan or the AC cooling fan. Have your car checked out if you experience higher than normal engine temperatures.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
Icon-warranty_badge-02

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.

GET A QUOTE

More related articles

The Traveler’s Guide to Driving in Malaysia
CraigBurrows / Shutterstock.com Malaysia is a popular destination for many tourists today. The country has amazing sights and attractions that you will want to explore....
How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...
P2159 OBD-II Trouble Code: Vehicle Speed Sensor B Range/Performance
Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC): P2159 P2159 code definition Vehicle Speed Sensor B Range/Performance...

Related questions

Q: Car only drives about 15 miles before engine quits

Hello there, thank you for asking about your 1956 Chevrolet Bel Air. Older, carbureted vehicles are not my area of expertise. However, if you got the vehicle to run by spraying carburetor cleaner into the carburetor, I can tell you...

Q: What Can Cause a Car Heater or an AC to Stop Working?

There are several parts to both the heating and AC system referred to as the HVAC (heating ventilation and air conditioning system) in your automobile. Each unit has a liquid or medium to transport heat, a fan to blow the...

Q: My radiator fan only turns on when my AC turns on.

Hello there, a couple of different items can cause the fan to not work like this. The most likely culprits are a thermostatic switch, fan resistor, temperature switch, low-speed or high-speed relay, or a wiring issue. If the vehicle overheats,...