Volvos are known for being exceptionally-reliable vehicles. They can still suffer from one particularly annoying problem, especially if it happens during the summertime, and that is HVAC compressor failure.
If the HVAC compressor isn’t working right, you won’t be able to use your air conditioning and have cool air come through the vents. This lack of cool air will occur even if you turn the dial to the coldest setting and the fans on high. You’re likely to still have air moving through them, but it’ll be warm, making driving your Volvo on hot days very unpleasant.
Your Volvo’s air conditioning system relies on refrigerated gas/refrigerant to provide cooling. The HVAC compressor’s job is to compress the refrigerant, hence the name. Once compressed, the refrigerant is pumped through the HVAC system. This is what allows the air that blows through the vents in your Volvo’s cabin to be cool.
There are some symptoms that point to a problem with the HVAC compressor, although it can be difficult to pinpoint the exact cause based on these signs alone, which is why having your Volvo inspected by a reputable service center is a good idea to remedy the issue as quickly as possible and get you back to driving comfortably.
How to Tell Whether Your Volvo Has HVAC Compressor Failure
- Blowing warm air: An obvious sign that the compressor is failing is that when you turn on the AC, the air is warm instead of isn’t cool. This will persist and won’t cool down the longer you run the car. It’s normal for the AC to be a little warm when you first start your car and turn the AC on for the first time, but should cool relatively quickly.
- Whirring/louder sound: If you turn on your AC and hear a whirring noise, or feel that the system seems to be running louder than it used to, and you aren’t receiving cool air, the compressor might be failing.
- The HVAC compressor is always running: If the compressor is constantly running, it’ll wear out much more quickly. The compressor relies on a clutch to turn it on and off, and if this clutch fails, your compressor might run all the time, leading to inefficiency and possible failure.
- If your Volvo is around 10-15 years old: An HVAC compressor might naturally fail after 10-15 years, so keep this in mind if you own an older model year.
Causes of HVAC Compressor Failure
As noted above, age itself can lead to HVAC compressor failure, but there are other possible causes as well, including dirt/debris leading to dirty coils. The cooling process depends on multiple coils, and if they’re contaminated with substances, they won’t be able to work as efficiently. Blocked suction lines can also be caused by debris build up, preventing proper refrigerant circulation.
For example, refrigerant absorbs heat via what is known as the evaporator coil. If this becomes blocked by dirt or grime or debris, it won’t be able to remove heat as designed, leading to warmer air flowing through your vents. Another possible concern is problems with the vehicle’s electrical system. So, there are multiple potential culprits as to why your air conditioning isn’t working right, and it can be confusing to try to determine which one it is. This is why it’s important to have your Volvo serviced by experts who know how to properly diagnose and inspect your HVAC system.
World Class Auto Repairs for Your Volvo’s HVAC Compressor Failure Service
We are located in Boca Raton, Florida. World Class Auto Repairs has ASE certified mechanics that specialize in European vehicles, including Volvos. We provide our customers with a high quality and personal experience to ensure you and your vehicle are treated well. The common problem of having your Volvo serviced at a local dealership without expertise in European vehicles is avoided by choosing our business where we ensure specialized knowledge in your particular make and model.
Call to schedule an appointment at (561) 451-0502 or fill out our form online. We are open Monday through Friday 7:30AM to 5:30PM and Saturday from 8:00AM to 3:00PM at 9787 Glades Road, Boca Raton, FL 33434. We look forward to helping you resolve your Volvo’s HVAC issues.