News Blog from Autospark

How Often Do You Need to Regas Car Air Conditioning?

FEBRUARY 2019

All Australian's know how essential a functioning car air conditioning unit is in order to survive the hot Australian summer. There's nothing more frustrating than getting into your vehicle on a hot summer's day only to be greeted by warm, stuffy air. Double-so when you crank your car air conditioning system at full blast and feel no difference!

You may be thinking – "what exactly do I need to do in order to get my car air conditioning operating at peak performance?" With a car regas service, your air conditioning can be turned into a super effective and reliable system – no matter what the outside temperature throws at you!

What is a Car Air Conditioning Regas?

Over time, a car air conditioning system can lose efficiency due to refrigerant leaks, clogged filters, and worn out seals. In order to maintain your car's air conditioning, it is highly recommended that you have it regassed annually. Regassing involves evacuating the refrigerant gas from your air conditioning, testing for leakages, then re-filling and pressurising the system.

How Often Should You Regas Your Car Air Conditioner?

It is recommended that you regas your car's air conditioning system every one to two years. Whilst some cars can last a good five years before needing a regas, it's best to put your car through a regular service in order to keep your car's compressor (the belt-driven device that transfers refrigerant gas into a condenser) in good shape. Even the best-designed vehicles will lose roughly 10% of the refrigerant gas in their air conditioning systems annually.

Your car's air conditioning system should be thought of like your car's engine and overall performance. You don't wait until your car dies before you get it fixed (well, at least you shouldn't!), so why wait for the air conditioning system to break before you have it regassed? How often you regas your car air conditioning will reduce the number of potential problems it may have further down the track.

How to Tell Your Car Air Conditioner Needs Regassing

  • The air being blown out your car vents doesn't feel as cold as it used to be. This is the most telltale sign you need your car air conditioner regassed.
  • On hot days your car air conditioning really struggles to bring the temperature of your vehicle down to a comfortable level.
  • Your car air conditioning emits a bad, musty odour. This smell is caused to the build-up of moisture, particles and dirt collected within the refrigerant gas.
  • You hear strange banging, rattling, or grinding noises coming from your car air conditioning system.

How Does a Car Air Conditioner Regas Work?

A cooling system that is leaking is a very good indicator that your unit is well overdue for a service. However, it can often be very difficult to detect a leak prior to a car air conditioning regas. This is why it's so important to have your car air conditioning regularly serviced.

During an air conditioning service of your car, the following will be performed:

  • Drive belts and pulleys, operation valves, thermostats and hoses inspected
  • System lines and components are tested for leaks with an electric leak detector
  • Air conditioning system is evacuated and the refrigerant is recovered
  • New refrigerant oil added to the system
  • Condenser temperature checked
  • A suction-line temperature reading
  • The vehicle will be run to check the air vent temperature

To protect your car's health, the environment and yourself, stay clear of cheap air conditioning regassing. Unqualified servicing workshops are infamous for replacing your vehicle's refrigerant with hydrocarbon gas called M30 – a highly flammable gas that can cause damage to your cooling system components and is a major fire risk. If your vehicle was to be involved in an accident, there is an incredibly high risk of this flammable gas being release inside the cabin. For this reason, always ensure that your air conditioning regas is performed by a qualified, reputable auto electrician like Autospark.

How Much Does Car Air Conditioner Regas Cost?

The cost of getting your car air conditioning regassed will vary based on the type of vehicle you own and the location of the workshop. Whilst a regular car service will check for obvious tests and faults that can be associated with the cooling system, it's a worthwhile and healthy practice to occasionally take your car to an auto electrician for a comprehensive air conditioning service.

How to Maintain Your Car Air Conditioner

Regular maintenance is incredibly important when it comes to keeping your car's air conditioning system in good health. A few ways you can take care of your car air conditioning after a regas service are:

  • Run your car air conditioning once a week. This is especially important in winter as regularly running your air conditioning will maintain your refrigerant gas pressure. Once summer comes along, your air conditioning won't have lost any pressure and will be ready for those blazing hot days.
  • Always keep your windows closed when the air conditioning is on. Open windows mean the air-conditioned air is being lost outside, so the fuel needed to power the air conditioning unit is being wasted.
  • Have your system professionally serviced every 2 years. Like every other area of your car, the air conditioning system needs to be serviced by experts in order to keep it running optimally.

Autospark are car air conditioning specialists in all vehicles, cars, vans, motor homes and trucks. Our certified and trained technicians auto electricians can diagnose and repair the air conditioning faults that generic mechanics cannot find. If you believe you have a problem with your cooling system or are ready for your annual air conditioning service, contact your local Autospark franchise today!

"You manage to make your customers feel important. I can't praise you highly enough for that and fixing my car in double quick time..."

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