Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls
  1. Home
  2. Articles
  3. How to Buy a Good Quality A/C Compressor

How to Buy a Good Quality A/C Compressor

ac compressor gq

Drivers have been enjoying the benefits of cool air comfort inside their vehicles since the late 1930s, when the Packard Motor Car Company introduced the former luxury feature as an option in consumer vehicles. Today, we view going without A/C in the car as an unbearable burden, and one that we want to rectify as quickly as possible.

The A/C compressor works by compressing refrigerant to be distributed throughout the air conditioning system. When your car’s A/C isn’t functioning properly it’s almost always one of two issues – low refrigerant (usually due to a leak) or a bad compressor. If you’ve checked the refrigerant level and it’s sufficient, the problem is almost surely the compressor.

A/C compressors may experience external failure or internal failure. External failure happens as a result of a malfunctioning clutch or pulley, or a refrigerant leak. This is the easier type of problem to fix. Internal failure can be detected by the presence of metal bits or flakes around the compressor. This type of damage can spread throughout the entire cooling system. In the event of internal failure it’s usually cheaper to replace the whole compressor.

How to make sure you’re getting a good quality A/C compressor:

  • Stick with new. While this part can be rebuilt, quality is very difficult to determine and can be spotty depending on the rebuilder.

  • Decide on aftermarket or OEM (original equipment manufacturer). Aftermarket parts can be high quality but they tend to bring down the vehicle’s value. With OEM you’re paying more but you know you’re getting a part that fits.

  • If you do opt for aftermarket, ask to see the part receipt and inspect the part. Make sure there aren’t any worn or rusty areas and that the part matches the receipt.

Replacing the A/C compressor itself is not a difficult job, however all of the seals must be placed with extreme accuracy, allowing no dust or particles into the gaps. This is typically a job better done by a seasoned expert.

YourMechanic supplies top-quality A/C compressors to our certified mobile technicians. We can also install an A/C compressor that you've purchased. Click here to get a quote and more information on A/C compressor replacement..

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

P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...
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,...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...

Related questions

Q: How much AC Flush is required for a vehicle flush?

You should not need more than 1 quart of flush. The brand does not matter. They are all made from the same chemicals.

Q: Weird smell from AC.

There is usually only two causes of this symptom. Inside your dash lies the evaporator for the air conditioning system. This evaporator looks like a small radiator but gets cold instead of hot. Imagine a soda can freshly opened out...

Q: After valve cover gasket replacement, compressor broke

Hi there. Thanks for writing in about your 2000 Lexus GS400. Compressors can go bad due to oil saturation. It is likely that the technician spilled additional oil on the compressor when replacing the valve cover. The technician may have...