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Old 04-28-2013, 01:31 PM   #1
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No cold air

Went with the top up today and turned on the air conditioner. I could tell the compressor kicked on but it only blows hot air. I don't know a thing about this system so I thought I'd toss it out to the masses. Any thoughts or do I have to take it to the stealer? I know, just drive with the top down. Sometimes it is just too hot.
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Old 04-28-2013, 02:11 PM   #2
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So many possibilities from worn out o-rings that leak, bad condensor, bad pump, etc. that it's best to take it to someone with the right equipment. Doesn't have to be a dealer though if you have a good independant available.
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Old 04-28-2013, 03:29 PM   #3
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You are right. I last used it in the fall and it as blowing really cold then so that's why I'm baffled. Seems strange to go from perfect to terrible so fast.
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Old 04-28-2013, 03:34 PM   #4
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Actually, that make perfect sense if the refridgerant all leaked out. Most cars, and I assume the Boxster too, run the compressor when the defroster is engaged so that in the cooler months the refridgerent and more importantly the lubricant gets a chance to be cycled and keep the o-rings and seals from drying out. If they dry out, you get a leak. Usually you need to replace the o-rings or seals to solve the problem and then refill it. A good tech shop can isolate the leak. You can too if you have a black-light and the right tools to refill your compressor and insert the dye. I've done it in the past, but nowadays I just take it to a specialist.
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Old 04-28-2013, 03:53 PM   #5
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Thanks for the help. I don't know any indies here so I guess the dealer will have a look. I hate giving them my money but I don't have experience in this area.
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Old 04-28-2013, 09:18 PM   #6
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Are these cars just prone to leaking freon, because I have had other cars for 20 years and they still blow cold air having never been recharged?
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Old 04-28-2013, 09:40 PM   #7
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Any good quality AC shop can do the necessary testing work. It's a two stage process.

First, they will fill the system with new refrigerant and a dye. If there is a gross leak, the shop's sniffer might be able to detect it right away. They'll need to be through though because there are many places where the refrigerant can escape.

Second, if there is no obvious leak, then you'll need to wait a few days or weeks until the AC system starts to blow warm air again. When this happens, the AC shop will use a UV light to look for dye throughout the system so it can find the source of the leak.

Here's a big diagnostic trick to keep in mind. If the evaporator is leaking from inside the sealed AC/heating box under the dash, have the AC shop peel back the passenger side carpet, pull the drain hose up and look for dye inside the hose. If it's there, the evaporator is leaking.

Good luck.

PS: My car started leaking when it hit the 10 year mark. I would not be surprised if that about the time people start seeing that the AC system needs repairs.

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Old 04-29-2013, 05:58 AM   #8
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Check with your local PCA for a good reference on a trusted A/C shop in your area. They know who the good guys are and who the snakes are. Here is a generic list:
Porsche Repair Shops & Mechanics in Utah | PCarShops.com

I damaged one of my radiators about 4 years ago and the process of replacing it put stress on the condenser o-rings. The refrigerant leaked out but a recharge was all that was needed. Still blows cold.

Other possibilities are a failed mix flap preventing air flow over the evaporator. Foam coming out the vents is the symptom of this.
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Old 04-29-2013, 07:59 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1olddude View Post
Are these cars just prone to leaking freon, because I have had other cars for 20 years and they still blow cold air having never been recharged?
Daily drivers not so much. Any garage queen will have a greater chance of seal failure...
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Old 04-29-2013, 08:52 PM   #10
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Topless: Thank you for the link. This forum is awesome.
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Old 04-30-2013, 10:08 AM   #11
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1olddude -

let's check some simple things before you take it into the shop.
FIRST
pop the hood and remove the battery cover. next to the battery on the passenger side, remove the black plastic cover. beneath this, you will see some aluminum AC lines. start the car & turn the AC on full blast. let it run for 5min and feel the larger of the AC lines. is it very cold? if so, the problem is not your compressor.

SECOND
if the line gets cold, you have a problem with the mixing flaps that control airflow inside the dashboard. they are all controlled by the climatronic unit (the one that says Manuel on the dashboard). the problem is usually this unit. pop the trim piece out from around the climatronic. remove the screws. pull out the unit. use a small wire brush to clean all the terminal. do the same with the plugs themselves. re-install. there is a TSB for this; condensation from the vents will drip water onto the plugs & cause corrosion & poor contact. this can cause the climatronic to act funny.

you can do both of these things in about 20min. let us know how it goes!

kev
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Old 04-30-2013, 06:24 PM   #12
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Thanks insite. I will give that a look on the weekend and let you know what I find. I appreciate the post and help.
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