A/C compressor(?) clicking sound, loud rumble


Old 07-15-10, 07:32 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 930
A/C compressor(?) clicking sound, loud rumble

96 Acura Integra.

A/C was not cooling well, was making a clickng sound when engaged, and the car ran rough with A/C engaged.

I added some refrigerant and now the clicking has lessened, but every so often there's a loud rumble, this started after adding refrigerant.

Have an appointment to have it looked at but curious what the problem may be so I can know if I am paying for the correct repair.

My guess is I overfilled the A/C.
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Old 07-15-10, 08:10 AM
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 1,312
Sounds like the compressor is going out.

Then I don't know what would happen if there was too much refrigerant in the system? (Because I always use gauges and the factory service information and fill to the specified pressure...)

But I do know an A/C compressor can't compress liquids, only gases. And a properly filled A/C system would convert the refrigerant to a gas before it enters the compressor.

So the question is... Would an overfilled A/C system prevent gas from forming and send liquid into the compressor? (and wreck it)

How an air conditioner works...
HowStuffWorks "Air-conditioning Basics"
Old 07-18-10, 02:31 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: USA/ Pacific NW
Posts: 3,301
i have learned the hard way several things:
1. do not overfill a/c, as it shuts down system due to pressure overload, and takes more power from engine.
2. never ever just "add freon". always add freon/oil mix. otherwise, compressor goes kaput. well, not kaput, but seizes, which is fixable, but major headache.
3. newer vehicles have freon measured by weight, and it is very hard to DIY

as of rumbling noise - if it's 100% compressor - i am leaning towards lack of oil in the system. but from my experiences, i'd rather say that compressor clutch is going bad. it's magnetic clutch and can make helluva noise if it starts skipping. also, clutch bearing goes bad, and makes ton of noise.
in general, you have 2 issues. your engine is losing power and does not have enough to run both car and compressor, and your compressor is either overloaded or under lubricated.
try adding a bit of a/c oil and see what happens. just keep in mind, too much stuff in the system will trip pressure switch and it will shut down a/c completely. been there.

also, we had several seized compressors brought back to life. took them off car, added some oil and hand cranked, until it loosened up and was spinning nice and easy. as they are oh so fast to charge big bucks for a new compressor.
Old 08-05-10, 11:36 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 930
Turns out the compressor is gone, as well as other components of the A/C system. Got 200,000+ miles out of it!

Repair costs more than the vehicle is worth. Now I have an excuse to shop for a C.P.O. Acura TL...


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