Understanding How Automotive Air Conditioning System Works


Automotive air conditioning, more commonly referred to as auto AC, is standard equipment on modern vehicles.  And why wouldn’t it? Our climate is changing in ways beyond our imagination. One moment it’s humid, the next it’s freezing. Having a way to control the temperature inside our vehicles is therefore not a luxury; it is a need.

And because auto AC is an important part of our cars, AC repair should also be a staple service in our vehicle’s annual check-up. Aside from this, AC repair should also be given attention as it is one of the auto parts that can often lead to very high repair bills if left untended.

As car owners, it will be a lot easier for us to diagnose and do auto AC repair if we have some basic knowledge of how it works. Auto AC’s are closed pressurized systems. Each unit consists of five parts namely compressor, condenser, accumulator or receiver dryer, expansion valve or orifice tube, and evaporator. These five components work together to create an output air temperature cold enough to make us feel comfortable.

Auto AC’s have two sides: the high side of the system and its low side. The former refers to the parts that are under high pressure and high temperature. Its components are identified by smaller diameter tubing and are very hot to the touch. Meanwhile, the latter refers to low pressure components. Its components are larger in diameter and are ice cold to the touch. These two sides, however, are important in that they are very handy for diagnosis. If we have a high-pressure line that is warm and then turns cold in line or even a frozen spot, then it indicates that there is a clog in this component. It signals us to head to the nearest auto AC repair shop and have our units checked. Other common auto AC repair problems include corrosion due to moisture as well as compressor damage due to the accumulation of particles like metal flakes, sand, or grit.

It is highly recommended that professional repairmen fix our auto AC’s whenever problems occur. Working on an air-conditioning system entails us to have the right tools and skills and not all of us have those.


Clarke Automotive Systems – Brandon
131 Central Drive Brandon, FL 33510

About Kapitan Bill

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