Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

How Long Does an AC Compressor Last?

AC compressor

As long as your car is running the way it should, you probably don’t even think about all the parts that are working under the hood. Your air conditioning (AC) compressor is one such part that is used every day, and you probably don’t even consider it until your air conditioning stops working. As you might guess from its name, the AC compressor compresses refrigerated air, and delivers it to the condenser, where it is converted into a cooling gas that chills the air in your vehicle’s passenger compartment. Then, it converts the cooled gas back to liquid, and returns it to the compressor unit.

As with many accessories in your car, it is difficult to say with any accuracy how long the AC compressor will last. It depends on the age of your car, and how often you use your AC. As your car ages, and as the AC compressor sustains a lot of use, parts will inevitably begin to malfunction. Then, you end up with little cool air (or even no cool air) in your passenger compartment. Usually, though, you can expect that you will get 8-10 years of use from your AC compressor, and for many drivers, that essentially means the life of the car.

So, what can cause an AC compressor to fail? There is a bit of a paradox here. Overuse can cause the AC compressor to fail, but by the same token, so can too little use. To keep your AC compressor running properly, you should use the AC for about ten minutes per month, even in winter.

Signs that your AC compressor is failing include:

  • Coolant leaks
  • Noise when your AC is switched on
  • Sporadic cooling

If you think that your AC compressor has seen better days, you should have it checked, and if necessary, replaced. A professional mechanic can replace your AC compressor so that you can enjoy effective climate control in your vehicle, regardless of its age.

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

How to Find the Keyless Code on a Ford Explorer or Mercury Mountaineer
Many Ford Explorers and Mercury Mountaineers were manufactured with an option known as the Ford keyless entry keypad. Some models refer to it as SecuriCode as well. It...
How to Buy Fuel Treatments
Adding a fuel additive to your gas tank when you fill up is one way to clean vital engine parts of deposits, improve the performance of your engine,...
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: antifeeze to come out of the O2 sensor

Hello, thank you for writing in. When coolant leaks into the engine from a blown head gasket, cracked head, crank case, intake manifold, or simply dripping down the engine. If there is actual coolant dripping from the O2 sensor, and...

Q: AC is not blowing cold and a plastic-like smell when AC is on.

There are different possibilities that could contribute to the plastic smell. The smell could be caused by a coolant leak, an electrical issue, the A/C compressor overheating, or simply an outside smell. Sometimes, plastic bags tend to get stuck...

Q: Plugged heater core

Hey there. The heater core may burst if you use too much pressure to try and purge the core of blockage. The core gets blocked from using the wrong fluid in the vehicle. The coolant will get all brown and...