Push AUTO and OFF until it goes "bong" and zero appears on the left. No need to keep it held. It is sensitive to having the two buttons pressed simultaneously. If one is pressed too late you will get the command from that button i.e. it will switch off or go into Auto mode. Hopefully it will stay zero with no fault codes on the right, until its done the test and gone back to normal display. If codes found, it will show the number of codes on the left, and the most recent code on the right. If more than one, you have to be watching it to catch them as only the last is shown on test completion.I tried it again with engine and recir both on. Kept both depressed beyond when 'off' showed in the window. Left side reads 0, right side nothing at all
I think the 9-5 compressor is variable displacement with a swashplate, i.e. it is engaged continuously, output being varied according to demand.If you have warmer setting (say 78F, it will cycle and turn-on and off as required.
Is fluorescent die available at auto stores?Push AUTO and OFF until it goes "bong" and zero appears on the left. No need to keep it held. It is sensitive to having the two buttons pressed simultaneously. If one is pressed too late you will get the command from that button i.e. it will switch off or go into Auto mode. Hopefully it will stay zero with no fault codes on the right, until its done the test and gone back to normal display. If codes found, it will show the number of codes on the left, and the most recent code on the right. If more than one, you have to be watching it to catch them as only the last is shown on test completion.
I think the 9-5 compressor is variable displacement with a swashplate, i.e. it is engaged continuously, output being varied according to demand.
However you can still hear the compressor clutch engaging without getting underneath etc. etc. Select a low temp, ensure the fan is running slow, and select ECON to disable the compressor. You should hear something, and there will probably be a tiny rpm drop/recovery.
In my limited experience (of car AC systems) the 9-5 design is strange. Air comes through the evaporator (i.e. cold) and either goes through the heater matrix (to warm it up a bit) or around the top and bottom of the matrix (theoretically avoiding it). Mixing flaps top and bottom achieve this. However even if full cold is selected, i.e. the air is directed around the matrix without being forced through it, the cold air still has to travel across the face of the heater matrix, with the inevitable consequence that it heats up a bit. Ridiculous.
When mine runs out of refrigerant but is still partially cooling, I can see for example 10˚C air at the right centre vent and extreme excursions to 40˚C (yes, forty!) at the side left side outer vent. The cold gas enters the evaporator on the right side, and hasn't got the oomph to cool all the way over to the left side of the evaporator (I know this by placing my hand on the evaporator face) so the left side of the HVAC unit doesn't get cool. Note that I'm in UK and left/right may be reversed compared to the LHD version, which is a mirror image. May be, because I think the evaporator plumbing might be the same. But you get the idea. I've seen a cross-sectional diagram of the HVAC unit which makes it clear.
So this is why you can still get air out the vents which is hotter then ambient.
Anyway - Priority one for me would be to get it gassed up with fluorescent dye, and find the leaks with a UV light. I wonder whether a chain store place that happens to offer AC top ups will be able to diagnose/analyse. I don't trust 'em, and use a mobile AC specialist. Marginally more $$ but infinitely more expertise/knowledge.
It's available everywhere, Amazon, ebay, parts stores.....Is fluorescent die available at auto stores?
Im on social security, and my credit card is close to maxed out. Need to try less expensive things firstIt's available everywhere, Amazon, ebay, parts stores.....
Just curious, why don't you take your car to a shop and have it professionally assessed and get an estimate to have it repaired?
Have you checked that the actuator arm for the recirculation flap (above the cabin air filter housing) hasn't broken? Very common failure.
The unfortunate thing is the system is too complicated to try less expensive things yourself and you will most likely end up in a scenario where you increase the cost of the inevitable repair by "trying less expensive things".Im on social security, and my credit card is close to maxed out. Need to try less expensive things first
IMO, the least expensive thing I can do is die + recharge. Beyond that I will have to suffer with the heat until the weather changesThe unfortunate thing is the system is too complicated to try less expensive things yourself and you will most likely end up in a scenario where you increase the cost of the inevitable repair by "trying less expensive things".
As soon as you crack into the DIY stuff you are seriously complicating things for a professional that might be able to help you.
I would consult a shop, ask them how much a diagnosis would cost and then go from there.
I'm sorry, was there anything in my questions that would indicate that I have a clue? Anyway, you could have asked, but I got lots of great advice, especially after Gidner's last post which points out the problem when there is a leak. I'm retired on social security, and need to do what 'I' can. What I have learned, from Gidner, is I'm above my depth. The guy who put some Freon in a couple months ago, simply added some, and me being ignorant, I was simply following his lead.That would have been nice to know over a week and over thirty posts ago!
What a huge waste of time spent by everyone that has tried to help, that tid bit basically nullifies this whole thread and our time spent.
Thanks again for your concern and help.@5X...
Sure, why not. But if you hooked-up the gauge properly last time and the reading was zero pressure, it will still be zero tomorrow so you will not learn anything new. A bit hard to guide you here since we don't know what the pressure readings were when your friend did the semi-charge and how much refrigerant you had in the system before it stopped working again after a week. So you don't know how long you would have cold air if you added, say, two 12-oz cans now. Suppose you could always try it and see how long it lasts this time. But like I said before, it would be a very temporary fix and a shame on the environment. Rather, you should probably let it go now and call-around some shops and find-out if any of them would do a free diagnosis for you. At least then you will know with certainly what you're up against and what it may cost you to fix this. The trick would be to find a honest and reputable shop that will give you honest answers. Sadly, shady shops may take you for a ride and say that the compressor, condenser and evaporator will all have to be changed and it will cost $2000+, even if the problem stemmed from rotted O-rings. Hard to argue against if you don't have the tools/knowledge to validate their claims and the SOB's know it. So just don't take one shops advise as gospel and get 2nd opinions. If they do the diagnosis for free, you got nothing to lose.
Sorry for your demise. It sucks being without AC (been there, done that) so I can feel your pain. Good luck and hopes for an easy and low-cost fix.
@5XSaab...On the stop-leak, could not really tell you if it is good or bad. Seen many opinions on it, some rave about it but some treats it like the plague. I suppose, if your demise is rotten O-rings, the stop-leak could help with that. But if it is a bigger leak, like a puncture in the condenser, puncture in one of the AC lines, shot compressor seal, etc., it would not do much to stop the leak I don't think.
But you still don't know what the pressure in the system is or isn't. If you're just low on refrigerant, I suppose you could give the stop-leak a try. What do you have to loose? But it is your car, your decision and will not advise you for or against.
I would still try to get somebody with real manifold gauges tell you what the LP and HP pressures are in the system (or confirm that it is zero). Not sure if those cans will really show your pressure, they typically just show the range. Do you know anybody with gauges? Or swing by the shop you mentioned or a Valvoline drive through (I know I sound like a broken record on this) and get the LP and HP pressures read and then report it back here (unless the shop can tell you right off the bat what the problem is). If you're lucky and you're just low on refrigerant due to a small leak, the refilling could be worth a try and you'd get dye into the system also. (but if you're not going to do the job yourself, what is the point of adding dye?). They would likely do that at a professional shop as port of their troubleshooting anyway.
Hissing noise - not sure what that is Could be a puncture in the radiator perhaps- have you had the coolant go low? I had a puncture in my radiator (actually it was KIA) at the top, where plastic and aluminum is joined. It was hissing for a while (5-10 seconds maybe?) after we turned the car off and then stopped as the pressure in the system was reduced. But there was no visible coolant leak, just hissing noise. But when i filled-up the system and pressure tested it, i could get coolant to spurt out from that joint. So I suspect it was only leaking under high load (i.e., when driving) and that's why I never got any tell-tale coolant puddles on the garage floor. While it could perhaps be a puncture in the condenser or the AC lines that run behind the radiator, it does not make sense to me if your clutch is not working and the compressor is not pumping. The pressure in the system is then static across the whole AC system and the same when the car is off or running. In other words, you're not building-up pressure so how could there by any hissing noise since the pressure is not really reducing (as it is static to begin with)? But if you decide to recharge and get the clutch to engage again (meaning compressor is pumping), and hear this hissing noise in that area again you could suspect a puncture in the condenser or possibly one of the AC lines. But you may want to visually inspect the condenser as it is prune to punctures due to its location. Usually there are tell-tale signs that PAG oil has leaked-out (and of course refrigerant as well) and you can see discolored (kinda whitish) areas on the condenser. If you see such spot or spots, then you can almost be certain that the radiator is the culprit (or one of the culprits).
Too bad about your situation. The world is upside down. I work in an industry that is serving the commercial airline industry (but also the military, which I support) and, as you can imagine, we are hurting a lot when the airlines are not operating. Revenues from spare parts sales and services are plummeting and that's where we make the money to pay the bills and salaries. We've laid-off more than 13,000 people since March...and not sure if they will take further action. So, I feel your pain in watching the good old dollar (I am too). This is a big reason why I try to do most of my own repairs, but I have to admit that I also enjoy it to some degree.
No ac long before the accident., caused by a trailor hitch ball whic did not penetrate beyond the grill area. There is no obvious physical damage to the condenser. The guy who put the ac in said the condenser was bent, not being aware that they are concave.Well Saab95X... I think maybe you know the answer to your demise. I was just cruising along on the forum and came across this post that you posted 28 days ago:
Here you indicate that "the damage to the front-end was minor" and then start asking questions about the condenser. Did your AC problems start after this "damage" that you incurred "to the front end" (you did not explain what happened- did you drive into something in front of you, another car, or?) ". But my guess is that your AC trouble started after this "incident")? Well if that is so, it is a strong possibility that you punctured the condenser or that some of the AC pipes that connect to the receiver drier (lives on the right hand side of the condenser) and the condenser may have been disturbed to the point that you have a leak. Could very well be that hissing sound you were talking about.The damage to my front end was minor, but I now see the condenser is concave, not holding Freon Im looking on ebay, but not sure which is which? My receiver/dryer is on the drivers side. Is there a different condenser for an estate...www.saabcentral.com
For the future, it is very important that you reveal all relevant facts when you post as it would make it a lot easier for the members to try to help you. But it is hard operate in darkness.