What is the AC Accumulator all about?
It takes a lot of technology to make the inside of your car comfortable during the heat of summer. And while you might be familiar with most of the major A/C components, like the compressor, chances are good that you may not be familiar with the accumulator, which is a lesser known part.
The accumulator’s job is to help manage the flow of refrigerant through the system, remove unwanted moisture and debris, and ensure that internal components are protected from corrosion and damage. It does the same job as a receiver/drier.
Keep in mind:
- The accumulator is a completely sealed system, so it can’t be inspected from the outside.
- Debris can accumulate just as easily as moisture, and even moisture can be a threat when it exceeds the absorption capabilities of the desiccant.
- When A/C system service is required, most recommend replacing the accumulator to avoid problems in the future.
How it's done:
- The AC refrigerant is removed from the AC system
- The defective AC Accumulator is removed from vehicle
- The new AC Accumulator is installed with new O-rings
- The AC system is put into a vacuum and then recharged with refrigerant
- The vehicle is road tested for proper AC operation
Most experts recommend replacing it during major A/C repairs or service. Because the accumulator stores moisture and accumulates debris from the A/C system, it will need to be replaced eventually. If you suspect the accumulator needs to be replaced, have one of our expert mechanics change it for you.
What common symptoms indicate you may need to replace the AC Accumulator?
- Weak or only cool air from the A/C system
How important is this service?
Without a functional accumulator, your A/C system will not work properly. Additionally, if the system is left open during repairs or replacement (compressor replacement, for example), additional moisture can penetrate the system and saturate the desiccant in the accumulator. This in turn will lead to further corrosion within the system. Have one of our expert mechanics replace the accumulator with any major A/C system part replacements.