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Matt, Mechanical Engineer
Category: Toyota
Satisfied Customers: 21707
Experience:  BEng, Repaired my own cars and others for 20 years, worked in Formula 1 for 10 years
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My Ac isn't working and I've been quoted 800 to 1500 to fix

Customer Question

My Ac isn't working and I've been quoted 800 to 1500 to fix it. I've been told they have to go I to the dash to fix it? 2003 Toyota matrix
JA: Have you checked the Freon level?
Customer: Yes I had it charged and serviced this summer a leak was suspected and dye was put in to see if it could be found
JA: Are you fixing your Matrix yourself? What have you tried so far?
Customer: No I take it to Firestone usually but took it somewhere else as well for a second opinion
JA: Anything else you want the mechanic to know before I connect you?
Customer: I don't think k so?
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Toyota
Expert:  Matt replied 10 months ago.


if the freon is up to pressure and the compressor is running but its still coming out hot then yes is possible a blend door or other air flap is stuck so the dash would have to come apart

however if its a lack of cold air then the following should be checked 1st

1st thing to check is that the AC rad / condenser is clear of any debris and there's nothing in front of the air flow to it, next ensure that the AC pump drive belt isn't slipping and if any doubt replace it.

Also check that if there's a pollen filter to the cabin air inlet that this is clean and free flowing

Next you can test components simply by checking the temperatures by touching them with the system running. with the engine at operating temperature and the AC turned on it should be as follows:

A hot compressor / pump

A hot high pressure refrigerant line from the compressor to the condenser

A hot condenser on the inlet

A warm condenser on the outlet

A warm liquid line from the condenser to the evaporator (before the expansion valve or orifice tube)

A cold evaporator outlet line

A cold low pressure refrigerant line to the compressor

If you get a different result from the above then suspect a blockage in the line or the component whose temperature is abnormal, this can be confirmed with a pressure test

Then if you're happy the temperature control is OK ( does it do hot as well as cold?) I'd take the car to an garage that can read the pressure levels of the system so the level of gas can be checked hopefully all it needs is a re-gas

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
I appreciate the response and the prompt response. However I am an older woman and believe this information is outside my capabilities. I do know what is explained her is not what the two mechanics have mentioned when I took it in for an estimate. I am concerned because fifteen hundred dollars is ALOT of money to me.
Expert:  Matt replied 10 months ago.


you're right to be concerned as $1500 is a quite a sum for anyone

I'd suggest to take the car to an AC specialist who will just look at the AC system to confirm is the dash really does need to come apart and like I said does the system do hot air and cold OK but not chilled / AC air?

if you can tell me your location / zip code I'll try and find someone in your area

Expert:  Matt replied 10 months ago.


do you still need help?

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