AC Dead today - need some help before I head to the dealer

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by Bluesman78, Apr 19, 2019.

  1. Bluesman78

    Bluesman78 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2017
    153
    45
    0
    Location:
    Boston
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    First time turning on the AC after winter. No cold air coming after driving around for 10 minutes. Cabin air filter is clean, anything I'm missing here before I have to dig deeper?

    Thanks.
     
  2. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    86,171
    38,085
    0
    Location:
    boston
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    temp set to 'low'?
     
  3. Bluesman78

    Bluesman78 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2017
    153
    45
    0
    Location:
    Boston
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    No I put it on 68 degrees. I will try low and see what happens.
     
  4. Bluesman78

    Bluesman78 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2017
    153
    45
    0
    Location:
    Boston
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    Couple things:

    I recently had the inverter coolant pump changed.

    AC Light doesn't come on unless I hit AUTO.

    Temp set to LOW

    Still ran warm. Checked the codes per this website got a 12, 21, 23 flashing
     
    #4 Bluesman78, Apr 19, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2019
  5. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    86,171
    38,085
    0
    Location:
    boston
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    i don't know the blink codes, do you?

    can you hear the compressor?
     
  6. Bluesman78

    Bluesman78 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2017
    153
    45
    0
    Location:
    Boston
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    I don't know what the compressor sounds like but I don't hear anything when the car is on except the engine.

    I hope its just the refrigerant.
     
  7. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    86,171
    38,085
    0
    Location:
    boston
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    when the engine shuts off, you can usually hear a pretty good sound coming from the compressor if you turn it on and off.
     
  8. Bluesman78

    Bluesman78 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2017
    153
    45
    0
    Location:
    Boston
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    I hear dead silence... What are the possibilities. I don't know if I want to spend $1200 on a compressor for a 2006 car even if the miles are low.
     
  9. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    86,171
    38,085
    0
    Location:
    boston
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    it could just be a wiring issue. rodents? that said, it will take some investigation. you should get the service manual for the blink codes to start, or maybe google can find them.

    if you do need a compressor, salvage may be the way to go.
     
  10. ChapmanF

    ChapmanF Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    8,474
    6,104
    0
    Location:
    Indiana, USA
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    IV
    Codes are listed in the repair manual.

    21 is the solar sensor code. You'll always have that code, unless strong light is shining on the sensor at the time you read the codes. So it's never a problem (unless strong light is shining and you still have the code).

    12 has to do with the ambient temperature sensor (the one behind the front bumper). That reading gets back to the A/C ECU by a bit of a twisty path: the sensor is connected to the engine ECU, which takes readings and then sends the data over to the A/C ECU over the network. Troubleshooting hints in the manual run five pages.

    23 has to do with the refrigerant pressure switch. Causes could be actual refrigerant pressure too low or too high, switch problem, wiring problem. Troubleshooting steps, four pages.
     
  11. Bluesman78

    Bluesman78 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2017
    153
    45
    0
    Location:
    Boston
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    Thanks!!

    Would it make sense if there is insufficient refrigerant that the compressor wouldn't turn on. I read for other cars that the compressor won't run unless there is enough fluid.

    My car is 2006 Prius with 115K miles.

    Could a regular mechanic start by recharging the AC system?
     
  12. ChapmanF

    ChapmanF Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    8,474
    6,104
    0
    Location:
    Indiana, USA
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    IV
    I don't think I would call anybody a "regular mechanic" who would start by adding charge without first investigating to find out what the problem was.
     
  13. Bluesman78

    Bluesman78 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2017
    153
    45
    0
    Location:
    Boston
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    I think I mean do only dealers look at this and what kind of repairs could i expect. Old car just not sure what to Spend on this
     
  14. ChapmanF

    ChapmanF Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    8,474
    6,104
    0
    Location:
    Indiana, USA
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    IV
    Sure, independent A/C shoppes can do it. Some of them will be scared off because it's a hyyyybbbrrriiidddd. Some of them will not be scared off but should be (it is essential that they know not to use any conventional oil in the system, or even tools/hoses that have touched conventional oil).

    That's the main thing they have to know. Find a shop that knows that and isn't scared off, and it's just A/C work.
     
  15. Bluesman78

    Bluesman78 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2017
    153
    45
    0
    Location:
    Boston
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    A/C Recharge, $130 later and nice cool cabin!!! Lucky it wasn’t the compressor. Thanks priuschat friends for all the advice!!!
     
    bisco likes this.
  16. ChapmanF

    ChapmanF Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    8,474
    6,104
    0
    Location:
    Indiana, USA
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    IV
    Did they find where the leak was?
     
  17. Bluesman78

    Bluesman78 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2017
    153
    45
    0
    Location:
    Boston
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    Shop was closed when I went to pick up the car but will find out. They are a certified AC independent shop. Highly reputable. Maybe he was doing me a favor becuse the car is old and probably knew this would probably get me through the summer.
     
Loading...