AC Clutch question
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Cadillac Catera and Cimarron Forum Discussion, AC Clutch question in Past Cadillac Vehicle Discussion; Hi folks, I'm curious to know if the AC clutch always stays on (spins) when the compressor is turned on ...
  1. #1
    retho78 is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    AC Clutch question

    Hi folks,

    I'm curious to know if the AC clutch always stays on (spins) when the compressor is turned on or does it quit in the middle and turn on back when it's time to recycle the refrigerant? My AC compressor clutch keeps running with the AC on, never stops. I'm not sure if the clutch gap might be too close to the pulley or maybe that's how it works. The AC works fine, nice and cool.


    Thanks.

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  3. #2
    investor74 is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: AC Clutch question

    This is all computer controlled these days to keep the AC going while removing the load of the compressor when it is not needed. Usually, the complaint is the compressor cycling too fast - that is usually caused by low refrigerant pressure.

    Amusingly, my father in law always turns the AC off when he stops the car so that it doesn't put a load on the starter when he starts it again. Maybe in the old days, but car computers do that for you now.

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    retho78 is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: AC Clutch question

    I can turn the AC off and on, but not sure why the clutch always run with the AC on. I thought clutch should disengage when it has too. Also, I do the same, turn the AC off before turning off / on the car....reduces the load to the battery and alternator. My battery has lasted at least five years with no problems.


    Thanks.

  5. #4
    MoistCabbage's Avatar
    MoistCabbage is online now Cadillac Owners 10000+ Posts
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    The compressor clutch should be cycling on and off. The point of this is to maintain a particular pressure. If it's cycling quickly, or remaining engaged, you most likely have a slightly low refrigerant charge.

    There is no need to turn the A/C off, the compressor is not engaged during cranking, nor is the blower fan.

  6. #5
    retho78 is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: AC Clutch question

    The AC blows nice and cool 40 deg at the vents and checked with the refrigerant hand pump showed in the filled zone. Well if the climate control is kept on with AC option on and starting the car I can hear the compressor kick in right away. My in laws car does the same too. I always off the climate control before turning off the car....just to be on the safe side.

  7. #6
    jupiter57 is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: AC Clutch question

    Quote Originally Posted by MoistCabbage View Post
    The compressor clutch should be cycling on and off. The point of this is to maintain a particular pressure. If it's cycling quickly, or remaining engaged, you most likely have a slightly low refrigerant charge.

    There is no need to turn the A/C off, the compressor is not engaged during cranking, nor is the blower fan.
    If I may, I would like to correct you:
    The A/C compressor on a Catera is a V5 variable displacement pump, it is designed to be engaged at all times, with the pressures adjusted internally via a "wobble plate".
    The compressor automatically adjusts the pressures as needed, thereby reducing wear on the clutch.

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