Drivers urged to make ‘simple fix’ to car which could save them thousands over summer

Drivers urged to make ‘simple fix’ to car which could save them thousands over summer

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Hemma Visavadia

By Hemma Visavadia

Published: 30/04/2024

- 14:02

Refrigerant levels control the temperature of the car

As the weather gets warmer, drivers have been urged to make vital checks to their vehicle to ensure refrigerant levels are working or could risk costly repair fees.

Refrigerant levels control the temperature of a car through air conditioning, but they sometimes get blocked resulting in warm air being blown out.

To tackle this problem, experts explained that by regularly cleaning out the condenser it can increase the lifespan of the function.

A condenser can become clogged with dirt, debris and insects which causes it to become defective and blow warm air.

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Aircon in car

Blocked refrigerants can cause warm air to blow


Graham Conway, motoring expert at Select Car Leasing, said: “One of the most common culprits behind warm air blowing from your car's air conditioning vents is low refrigerant levels.

“Refrigerant is essential for keeping your AC system running smoothly as it replaces warm air with cold air while ensuring the interior stays cool.

“However, over time, refrigerant levels can be depleted as the gas naturally permeates.

“When the refrigerant levels drop too low, your AC system won't be able to produce cool air effectively.”

Offering drivers a quick fix, Conway explained that if a driver suspects they have low refrigerant levels they can purchase a refrigerant recharge kit which is available at most auto parts stores.

Refilling refrigerant levels can, however be a tricky job he warned, with drivers needing to check their car manual to find out the right type of gas for specific cars.

Conway added: “When the condenser is blocked, it’s unable to properly cool the refrigerant, leading to warm air blowing into the car, rather than out. If you notice a foul smell coming from the aircon, that could also be a sign that the condenser is blocked.

“If you’re not confident in the task, it’s much better and potentially safer to take your car to your preferred garage and let a specialist take over.”

For more car savvy people, Conway said they may opt to clean the condenser themselves, but if they get it wrong and drivers could risk damaging the part.

The condenser is usually located in front of the radiator of the car, it’s responsible, among other things is to transport warm air out of the car.

Another cause of air conditioning blowing warm air flagged by Conway is if it has a clogged cabin air filter.

This filter is often located behind the glove box, if it’s blocked the air flow is compromised, Conway warned, which could result in the car smelling foul.


An air con system

A replacement air cabin filter costs around £15


Replacing the cabin air filter is also noted as a “simple fix” to ensure the AC is working. This filter helps remove blog dust, allergens and pollen that enters the cabin of the car.

A replacement air cabin filter costs around £15 and should be changed every year.

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