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sprinkles08, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Chrysler
Satisfied Customers: 22827
Experience:  ASE Master & Advanced level certified, Chrysler Master Certified, Trans and Hybrid Specialist
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2005 PT Cruiser: dies..I put it in park/neutral and speed..vapor..hood

Resolved Question:

I have a 2005 PT Cruiser. At stoplights, while the A/C is on, the car shakes and almost dies. If I put it in park/neutral and speed up the engine I get a very loud noise almost like the fan blade is hitting something then there is a cloud or vapor that comes out from under the hood. In the meantime the A/C blows out hot air. Once the car gets going again the A/C will eventually get cooler and cooler. If I turn off the A/C everything works fine while at a stoplight. I read online that I needed to replace the low pressure sensor. I did and the car still acts the same way. This problem seems to be one that affects the PT Cruiser. Any ideas?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Chrysler
Expert:  sprinkles08 replied 5 years ago.

Hello and welcome to JustAnswer!


Your problems are coming from a cooling fan that is inoperative. When you are stopped the cooling fan has to come on to pull air through the a/c condensor to keep high side pressure down and cool the condensor. If the fan doesn't operate then high side pressure will become very high. This puts a large load on the engine and will cause the idle to be intermittently drug down.


When this happens and the high side pressure becomes high enough it will vent refrigerant out of the high pressure relief on the compressor.


What you will need to do is check for power and ground at the fan at the time it should be running. If there is power and ground but the fan won't run then it will need to be replaced. Cooling fan failures aren't uncommon on these.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Is this the same as the radiator fan? That fan does come on and off whenever the engine gets warm. The temp gauge is always normal.
Expert:  sprinkles08 replied 5 years ago.
Yes, the fan behind the radiator is called the cooling fan. It has two separate circuits through it, if you are seeing it work when the engine gets warm then you are seeing the low speed circuit. When the a/c is on it commands the high speed circuit on, not related to the low speed circuit. High and low speed use two totally separate sets of brushes and electrical circuits in the motor. Your high speed circuit is most likely burnt out, which is what normally happens on these. What you'll need to do is turn the /c on and check for power and ground at the fan when it's not running, if there is power and ground then it will need to be replaced.
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