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Old 02-26-2011, 11:09 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Grinding noise from AC Compressor

2000 SEL Duratec, 171000 miles. California car.

Replaced AC clutch less than 2 years but almost 45K miles ago. The entire clutch assembly was replaced, including the pulley and the coil, after market from NAPA.

Now it is making a grinding noise again, even when the compressor is not engaged. So it appears the clutch, not the compressor, is going again.

What do you think? Should I replace the clutch again, or am I better off just replace the entire compressor?
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Old 02-26-2011, 11:42 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I've replaced the compressor since it usually isn't far behind, unless it has low miles. I believe the clutch has been redesigned, At least on the unit i purchased.
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Old 02-26-2011, 11:49 PM   #3 (permalink)
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The main reason I am reluctant to replace the compressor is I am unwilling to evacuate the AC system. How hard is it? What tools do I need?
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Old 02-27-2011, 12:10 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Does it sound liek this:
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Old 02-27-2011, 12:21 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Yes, is does. Only mine is sort of mixed with a clicking noise.

I used a long screw driver to check for the source of the noise. I am 100% sure it's from the compressor.

The compressor never engaged during the time I checked, so I am thinking the clutch is bad.

Curiously, on a few right turns, the noise became louder. Any idea why?

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Old 02-27-2011, 07:34 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I wonder if the shaft in the compressor has too much lateral play. If so putting new clutches on it won't really help.
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Old 02-27-2011, 01:52 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I took off the belt. There isn't much play on the clutch. When I turn the clutch pulley, it feels normal. There is some play on the magnetic plate (is that the right term?). Is this plate attached to the compressor shaft? If so, it appears that indeed the compressor shaft may be the problem.

On the other hand, the compressor never engaged -- it's been cold. Still there is this grinding, clicking, dinging noise. So I am thinking it has to be the pulley bearing. Any thoughts?
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Old 02-27-2011, 11:13 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hhu168 View Post
........... Is this plate attached to the compressor shaft? If so, it appears that indeed the compressor shaft may be the problem. ................
AC clutch has 2 plates. One is attached to the compressor shaft. It is stationary. The other is a part of the pulley that spins all the time.
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Old 02-27-2011, 11:22 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paker View Post
AC clutch has 2 plates. One is attached to the compressor shaft. It is stationary. The other is a part of the pulley that spins all the time.
Thanks.

I was referring to the outer plate that has a triangle thingy. I am fairly sure this plate is attached to the compressor shaft. I seem to remember that from 2 years ago, when I replaced the clutch.

This plate has some play that seems abnormal to me. The pulley appears normal.
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Old 02-27-2011, 11:38 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I agree. The plate should not be spinning.

I think it's your call. I replaced just the ac clutch at 110k miles. Some recommended replacing all (compressor and clutch). The only reason I didn't replace the compressor was the previous owner could have replaced the original already. If you are the original owner and you know it's original compressor......
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