Variable compressors are now one of the most common style of compressors fitted to current-day vehicles, regulated by either an Electronic or Mechanical control valve. Variable compressors were introduced to maximise the efficiency and economy of the A/C system whilst conserving power. However this also makes for a challenging A/C system to accurately diagnose.
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Apart from leaks, which are usually visible due to oily patches, most condenser problems are indicated by high head pressure. In a condenser, all types of blockages or restrictions, internal or external, will increase head pressure and cause a drop in performance.
As the condenser has no moving parts, the usual wear and tear rules don’t tend to apply. However, condenser complications are a common cause of system break-downs.
Oil is an essential component of a well performing A/C system, used to lubricate moving parts and enables heat to escape from the compressor.
TECH SUPPORT – Variable Swashplate Compressor
When a belt-driven Swashplate piston air conditioning compressor engages, a noticeable knock occurs and there is a reduction in engine power. This can be eliminated by keeping the compressor engaged all the time and controlling refrigerant flow by varying the displacement of the compressor. This is known as a Variable Swashplate Compressor - a variation of the swashplate compressor which incorporates a control valve.