Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls
  1. Home
  2. Articles
  3. Symptoms of a Bad or Failing AC Condenser

Symptoms of a Bad or Failing AC Condenser

AC Condenser

The AC condenser is a very important component found on virtually all modern automotive AC systems. Its primary function is to convert the refrigerant coming from the compressor from a high temperature, high pressure vapor into a high pressure liquid through condensation. Similar to how the cooling system radiator functions, the vehicle moves cool air passes through the condenser fins, cooling the refrigerant as it passes through until it is liquified. The cooled liquid refrigerant is what is used to cool the cabin when the AC is turned on.

As all of the AC system’s refrigerant passes directly through the condenser, if there is any problem with the condenser, it can negatively affect the operation of the entire system and should be replaced if necessary. There will usually be a few ways to spot a bad or failing condenser.

Significantly reduced cooling

One of the first symptoms of a failed or failing AC compressor is reduced cooling. If the condenser is damaged in any way and results in the restriction of refrigerant flow, then the entire cooling system will work less efficiently. If the refrigerant cannot flow properly, then the amount of cool air that the system can produce will be significantly reduced.

Noticeable leaks

A more obvious sign of condenser failure will be a noticeable leak. Over time, the condenser can begin to leak either due to age or damage. When the condenser leaks, depending where and how big the leak is, all of the high pressure refrigerant can and will eventually leak out, disabling the entire AC system. When it begins to leak it must be replaced as a whole since the condenser is one piece.

If you suspect that you may be having a problem with your AC condenser, then have it looked at by a professional technician, such as one from YourMechanic. If necessary, they will be able to replace your AC condenser, as it is a critical component to the operation of the vehicle’s AC system.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
Still not sure about your car's issue?
Diagnose your car
What kind of issue are you experiencing?
Brakes are squeaking
Car is not starting
Car is overheating
Car is shaking (vibrating)
Fluids are leaking
Heating and A/C
Smoke or steam is coming out of the car
Warning light is on
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

Veteran and Military Driver Laws and Benefits in Idaho
The state of Idaho offers a number of benefits and perks for those Americans who have either served in an Armed Forces branch in the...
Veteran and Military Driver Laws and Benefits in New Mexico
The state of New Mexico offers a number of benefits and perks for those Americans who have either served in an Armed Forces branch...
P2422 OBD-II Trouble Code: Evaporative Emissions Control System (EVAP) Vent Valve Stuck Closed
Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC): P2422 P2422 code definition Evaporative Emissions Control System (EVAP)...

Related questions

Q: AC running but not blowing.

When your heater control valve fails, this can cause the vehicle to heat one side and not the other on a dual zone system. I would recommend having your heater control valve tested using the manufacturer's recommended procedure to ensure...

Q: My blower switch only works on #2 speed & high speed could this be the blower resistor?

Hello there, a few common faults can cause your 1972 Oldsmobile Cutlass to only work on the #2 speed air flow. You are correct, the blower motor resistor could cause this fault. Other likely causes would be the fan control...

Q: I have a 2003 Saturn L200 2.2L Manual Drive and the heater or AC will not work no air blowing.

Hi there. From the description you have provided, it would appear, you have covered the bases concerning your vehicle's inoperative blower motor. However, I am lead to believe the problem is still, no power supplied to the blower motor connector....