Once a luxury feature, air conditioning is now considered essential in today’s cars and trucks. Try and imagine living through one of Arizona’s sizzling summers without it. Though most motorists pay little heed to their car or truck’s climate control, a modicum of care and maintenance is necessary to ensure the system doesn’t falter when it’s needed the most.
For starters, even if the weather is temperate, be sure to run the air conditioner for at least 10 minutes every week to help maintain the correct coolant pressure and ensure the system’s compressor is working properly.
Should your windshield fog up on a cooler day, switch on both the defroster and the A/C to quickly clear things up; in addition to cooling a car’s interior, the system removes moisture from the air, hence the “conditioner” part of the name. To that end, during periods of humidity levels, be sure to operate the defroster along with the A/C for five or ten minutes a day to draw excess moisture out the passenger compartment to prevent mildew and, in turn, unpleasant odors, from forming within the cabin.
If your car is newer and is equipped with a cabin air filter, be sure to change it every 12,000 to 15,000 miles, or as required by the automaker’s maintenance schedule. The cabin filter helps trap pollen, dust and exhaust gases and prevents leaves, bugs and assorted debris from becoming jammed in the climate control system. A dirty air filter with restricted flow can also cause damage to the system when operated over an extended period.
Check the vehicle’s owner’s manual to determine the filter’s location – it’s usually accessible via a panel in the heating/cooling system housing, either under the hood or inside the car. It may require hand tools to remove and replace, so if you’re not particularly handy, have a local technician do it for you.
The most prudent course of action is to bring your vehicle to an auto shop annually – ideally before summer’s heat begins to set in – to have the air conditioning system checked and serviced. The technician will usually start by checking the condition of hoses, lines, seals and other components for leaks, and inspect the system’s drive belt for the correct tension and any wear. He or she will also check the system’s pressure readings to test its operation, refrigerant charge and outlet temperatures.
If the system is low on refrigerant, a leak test will be performed to identify its source and recommend any necessary repairs. Leaking refrigerant is both detrimental to an air conditioning system’s performance and the environment. An astute do-it yourselfer can recharge a car’s refrigerant via an all-in-one service kit, though most drivers should choose to have the task performed by one of our specially trained technicians.
Avoid being left hot and bothered behind the wheel this summer by making an appointment at one of Jack Furrier Tire and Auto Care’s 14 locations for an A/C inspection.
For more than 55 years, the experts at Jack Furrier Tire and Auto Care have been serving the Tucson, Marana, Oro Valley and Sierra Vista communities. Whatever your auto problems, the team at Jack Furrier has the expertise to help. They were even voted “Best Auto Repair Shop,” “Best Tire Store,” “Best Locally Owned Business” and “Best Customer Service” in the Arizona Daily Star’s 2016 Reader’s Choice awards.
To find the Jack Furrier Tire and Auto Care location nearest you, visit JackFurriers.com.
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