3 Tips for Servicing Automotive Air Conditioning Systems After Auto Mechanic School

After a busy summer, many car air conditioning systems will have been working overtime. As an auto mechanic, you’ll encounter a number of clients looking to service their AC systems during the winter period. Like most components of a car, the AC system is prone to a buildup of dirt, dust, and debris, all of which can clog the system. Since airflow is so important to the performance of the AC, it’s important to know how to properly maintain and service the system.  Early detection of any leaks or damages to a vehicle’s AC system is crucial to avoid more significant repairs down the line and to extend the life of the unit. If you’re looking to expand your knowledge as an auto technician, here’s a quick guide to servicing a vehicle’s air conditioning system!

1. Clean the Filter and Condenser After Auto Mechanic School

The cabin of a vehicle has an air filter to encourage the flow of air from the AC system under the hood through to the interior of the car. Depending on the vehicle model, the air filter can be found inside the glove box, under the dashboard, or under the hood. When dealing with a client with a faulty AC system, graduates of auto mechanic school should first inspect the air filter to see whether it has become clogged with debris. Clogged filters not only reduce the airflow in the vehicle but also carry dirt into the evaporator coil and limit its capacity to absorb heat.

Likewise, the condenser of the AC system can suffer a build-up of dirt or residue that reduces the system’s efficiency. As a professional auto mechanic, take the time to clean both the air filter and the condenser to optimize the airflow in the car. At the same time, double-check the condenser for any loose or broken parts that may need to be replaced.

Air conditioning systems can suffer from a clogged filter or condenser

2. Examine the Cooling Fan 

In some cases, the AC system may not be working at all. The best way to check this is to examine the cooling fan. Most cars today come equipped with an electric cooling fan installed under the hood. When the air conditioner is on, the cooling fan should be in motion. If the cooling fan isn’t working, there’s likely a malfunction with the relay, temperature sensor, control module, or fan motor. Generally, the most common culprit for AC failure is the relay. 

The easiest way to confirm this is to examine the cooling fan to check for visible signs of corrosion or burnt wiring. In that event, the relay must be replaced. Students in auto mechanic courses will learn from a combination of classroom theory and practical training to identify and repair the different components of a car. With modules on cooling systems and electrical fundamentals, students will be well equipped to perform the necessary repairs on any number of vehicle systems. 

Students in auto mechanic school will learn to perform repairs on different vehicle systems

3. Inspect the Compressor 

Another vital feature of a vehicle’s AC system is the compressor. The compressor is responsible for converting the low-temperature refrigerant gas into a high-pressure and high-temperature gas. If the compressor is functioning properly, it sends the refrigerant gas into the condenser. As a professional auto technician, you can know whether the compressor is working by checking to see if the serpentine belt in the engine is turning. If the belt is turning, it may be that the compressor piston is broken. If the belt is not turning, the compressor will likely need replacing. Other possible causes could be a poor thermostat, the clutch oil, or low refrigerant levels – all of which can cause the compressor to stop working. Those with auto technician training will gain the tools and experience to identify the most likely cause and perform the necessary repairs to preserve the vehicle’s system. 

Are you ready to launch your career with auto tech technician training in Vancouver?

Contact ATC Surrey today!

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