Asked by: Loise Wysocki
automotive auto repair

Should AC compressor pulley spin freely?

Last Updated: 8th April, 2021

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Your AC compressor should spin freely without the AC clutch engaged, for example with the defrost and A/C switches turned off. If the pulley does not spin free all the time then your compressor bearing could be wearing out.

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In this regard, is the AC pulley supposed to spin?

Yes the compressor pulley should spin at all times. If it did not then you would have a toasted belt. When the compressor engauges it uses a magnetic clutch mechanism which allows the compressor to pressurize the freon.

Subsequently, question is, will a bad AC compressor affect the engine? Without the AC on the clutch will not engage and the AC compressor will not turn an therefore have no effect on the engine.

Correspondingly, what causes AC compressor to lock up?

The compressor is a pump that attaches to the engine of a car. It has the task of pumping a refrigerant gas, which is typically freon. Some of the causes for an automotive air conditioner's compressor locking up are improper lubrication, low coolant levels, and low-quality or incorrect types of refrigerant.

Can you drive with a locked up AC compressor?

The clutch can seize, which permanently keeps the compressor activated; or it can break, which means the compressor will not be able to receive engine power. The only possible damage is when the pulley freezes it can cause the drive belt to break prematurely.

Related Question Answers

Jobita Chu

Explainer

Can you turn an AC compressor by hand?

Typically you can grip the clutch with your hand and turn the compressor, but it is not easy. You might try turning it more and see if it loosens up. Put a little oil in the intake port and turn until some oil might come out.

Ronny Espinho

Explainer

What happens when AC compressor clutch goes bad?

The clutch can seize, which permanently keeps the compressor activated; or it can break, which means the compressor will not be able to receive engine power. Sometimes the clutch itself can be replaced, but usually replacing the entire compressor turns out to be the most efficient repair.

Daida Drucker

Pundit

How much does it cost to replace an AC compressor clutch?

The average cost for an AC compressor clutch replacement is between $630 and $687. Labor costs are estimated between $185 and $235 while parts are priced between $445 and $452.

Eghosa Zheltov

Pundit

Why does AC clutch not engage?

If the clutch doesn't engage, the problem could be a blown fuse, an open in the wire to the clutch coil, a bad clutch coil, a poor ground, or a low pressure lockout. In some vehicles the compressor clutch relay is turned on and off by the low pressure switch and the evaporator temperature sensor.

Nairobi AlemaƱy

Pundit

How do you bypass AC clutch relay?

How Do I Check an AC Clutch Relay?
  1. Locate the Relay. Locate the air conditioner clutch relay by tracing the wire connection from the air conditioner compressor plug-in to the relay.
  2. Check Function. Using a 12-volt test light, connect the alligator clip to the negative terminal on the battery.
  3. Bypass the Relay. To bypass the relay, plug the A/C back in.

Lesia Younsi

Pundit

Why is my AC blowing hot air in my car?

Hot air coming from your car AC vents can mean that you have low levels of refrigerant. It can also be due to a problem in the condenser, the compressor, the cooling fan, or the electrical system of your car.

Haywood Valiente

Teacher

What causes AC clutch to burn out?

Compressor burnout is a very specific mode of failure that may be caused by high temperatures in the motor windings or discharge area of the compressor. High temperatures break down the motor winding insulation, which may cause a loss of electrical resistance and result in a short to the ground or even an open winding.

Sigurd Vaginoff

Teacher

Can I drive with a bad AC clutch?

You will be fine as long as you don't need or want AC in your car. If the clutch doesn't work properly, you will still be able to drive your car. I have seen it so many times on vehicles where they just don't use their AC; however, if your AC compressor doesn't work, you won't have cold air coming from your vents.

Chunyan Durantez

Teacher

What does a bad AC compressor sound like?

Loud noises when the compressor is running
Another potential symptom of a failing AC compressor is loud or unusual noises. A worn bearing will produce a high pitched squealing or grinding sound, while a seized bearing will produce a grinding noise or a noticeable belt squeal.

Fahad Colilla

Reviewer

Can AC compressor be repaired?

Can an AC Compressor Be Repaired? If you have received a professional confirmation that your AC compressor is in disrepair you now have to face a few options: replace the AC compressor, replace the entire condensing unit with or without the indoor evaporator coil, or replace the whole cooling and heating system.

Doralice Abalada

Reviewer

Can you replace AC compressor pulley?

Yes you can just replace the clutch pulley on the a/c compressor. The issue that you may have is the pulley bearing seized up and may have spun on the front of the compressor nose cone and will damage it. Have the pulley removed and then see the front of the compressor the shape it is in.

Inca Ansogorri

Reviewer

How do I test my car AC compressor?

Look under the hood at the AC compressor clutch.
  1. Your car should be running with the AC on to check the compressor clutch.
  2. The compressor looks like a small motor with a large wheel on the end. The wheel (which is the compressor clutch) should be spinning. If it is not spinning, you have a problem with your compressor.

Salahddine Karls

Beginner

How do you use AC oil injectors?

  1. Before adding any additive into the injector, the shut off valve must be off.
  2. Unscrew the cylinder to add desired amount of oil, dye, or Red Angel.
  3. Reconnect the end of the cylinder (secure tightly).
  4. Connect the R-134a coupler to the injector.
  5. Connect the other hose of the injector to the low side service port.

Otto Tenhaeff

Beginner

Can you use PAG 150 instead of PAG 46?

But their use is a recipe for potential problems. There is a difference in the viscosity (thickness) of PAG 46, PAG 100 and PAG 150. Plus, using anything other than the specified viscosity of PAG oil in systems that require it voids the warranty from many of those compressor manufacturers.