If you’ve noticed that your air conditioning unit has been on the fritz lately, we understand that it can sometimes be hard to properly diagnose the issue.
Is the fan broken, are you out of refrigerant, or is something else going on?
One part of the unit that many people neglect to understand as the source of an issue is the AC accumulator.
In this post, we’ll teach you four of the most obvious signs that there’s a problem within your accumulator air conditioning system.
We’ll also let you know where you can go online to shop for high-quality and affordable replacement parts and repair services so you can get things fixed before the problem becomes worse.
What is an Air Conditioning Accumulator?
Before we discuss the signs of a faulty AC accumulator, let’s make sure you know what the part does.
After all, you want to be certain that the problem is indeed with the car AC accumulator, and not with another aspect of the unit.
Essentially, the job of an air conditioning accumulator is to collect the coolant once it travels out of the evaporator in the AC unit as a whole. Once the refrigerant is inside the AC accumulator, it will then turn it into a gas.
Then, it will send it over to the compressor within the unit. Your accumulator also holds a special type of moisture, known as a desiccant. The desiccant is what quicken the overall conversion of the refrigerant into gas.
So, where can you find it within the unit itself?
Usually, the accumulator is right between the compressor and the evaporator — making it the “middle man” of your car’s AC unit. It will always be found on the side of your unit that handles the suction.
1. The AC Smells Awful
You’re ready to hit the road, you’ve created the perfect playlist, and your car’s passenger seat is filled with snacks for the ride.
The only problem?
You’ve noticed that your AC unit seriously stinks. In fact, it smells a whole lot like rotten eggs, or even just moldy bread.
In addition to this being a sign that there’s a problem with your AC accumulator, it’s also a potential health risks.
If, along with the smell, you’ve noticed an increase in coughing, watery eyes, and more when you get in the car and blast the AC?
You may be dealing with mold growth.
This means that your accumulator has stopped properly getting the moisture out of the AC unit and turning it into gas. Instead, that moisture turns into mildew and mold that has built up within your unit as a whole.
You may need to get in touch with a professional to make sure that you handle this issue properly and completely.
Your health may be at risk, as well as the overall functionality of your car’s AC.
2. You’ve Noticed Leaks
Of course, one of the most obvious signs that there’s a serious issue with your accumulator AC system is if you notice visible leaks, or even just pools of water on the flooring of your car.
If you suspect that this might be an issue, then you’ll need to take a look up underneath the car. You should also be sure to check within your engine bay for even more signs of coolant leakage.
If you know you have a leak on your hands, you’ll need to be sure to act quickly.
If you don’t, over time, the leak will empty out all of your coolant, and your air conditioning will stop working altogether.
3. You Hear Rattling Noises
Whenever you turn on the AC unit in your car, does it start to make loud and obnoxious rattling noises after only a few minutes of use?
If so, then it’s probably a sign that something isn’t quite right within your accumulator air conditioning system.
The likely culprit?
There’s too much corrosion on your accumulator, so much so that it’s actually caused the interior of the mechanism to stop working effectively.
In some cases, this noise could also indicate that a hose or even a fitting has gotten too lose. It could mean that the fitting are just worn out and in need of replacement.
4. Your AC just isn’t Working
Do you feel like that, no matter how high you crank up the air conditioning in your car, it’s still boiling hot?
If so, then it’s likely that a problem with your car AC accumulator could be at fault.
This is something that you need to take care of for many reasons. First and most obviously, you don’t want to be uncomfortable during long car rides on hot days.
But more importantly, a faulty accumulator means that your car will burn through gas much more quickly than usual. This is because your AC unit will need to use twice as much power to accomplish half as much.
This also wears down the overall AC unit much faster than is normal. This can lead to costly repairs or even replacements in the near future.
Need to Replace your AC Accumulator?
We hope that this post has helped you to recognize the four major signs of a faulty AC accumulator.
Remember that a rotten smell, a system that doesn’t work, rattling noises, or leaks are all indications that you need to repair or replace the accumulator system in your vehicle.
Looking for reliable replacement parts at a fair price?
We’ve got you covered.
With over 30 years of experience, we’re experts at helping you to find exactly what you need. We also offer free shipping.
Check out our online shop to start getting your car on the road to recovery today.