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Old 06-11-2014, 03:26 PM   #1
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Default A.C won't Turn on Above 90F Degrees

Wondering if anyone else has been having trouble with there a/c not blowing cold air in Hot weather usually around 90 degree temps and above when you first start the car after its been sitting for a while in the heat, usually takes about 15 minutes of driving before it starts to blow cold and sometimes longer after driving for a longer distance. I have taken it to the dealer several times and of course they haven't been able to replicate it, it has never done it when I "first" start it in the morning, it mostly happens only after its been driven and on warm days.

My Regal has 74000 miles and has never had anything go wrong on it YET....LOL till now. When the air decides to work, it works great and gets cold as if new. It just all of a sudden started doing this problem a couple weeks ago on our first hot day in the 90'* here in Calif.

I recycle the auto climate control many different ways as suggested by the dealer and other techie advisor'* and I used the manual mode as suggested as well but none made it work any better or kick into cold air.

The Condenser was cleaned by the dealer,the Compressor and Refrigerant and all fluids were at Factory specs checked by the Buick Dealer and nothing was found out by their testing as it worked fine when I take it in to them in mornings. So not sure how they are checking this as they don't really let you see or get into the work area'* but I did tell them its when things are hot outside its occurs 99% of the time.

One thing I noticed my wife drives car to work in morning at end of day drives it home. We got and placed a Windshield SCREEN inside car above dash and it cooled down the inside some what and now the car A/C works more often and has less trouble getting the A/C to start working after sitting all day in sun.

Also if you turn the A/C on and have the Auto control module center setting at max high and dial down a couple degrees at a time wait a few seconds then dial down some more the air usually kicks in cold at about anything under 80f degrees or below.....but at 72 degrees if in auto the fans shut off like its reached the temperature selected but its still hotter than heck inside and 90 degrees outside, then dialing down to 70f degrees it kicks in under Auto mode then as cold air starts blowing instead of hot air. Its very confusing details I know but this climate control GM/BUICK uses has many quirks I am finding out from the many owners of the newer vehicles past few years.

Hopefully someone has had some experience with this or similar problem. I've ordered some detailed owners manuals for the vehicle so I can check things since the dealer is not coming up with any answers other than change the climate control module in the car for a start. I needed some (books)anyway as I have always had some detailed books on all my prior vehicles for sooner or later one will need to do some type of maint. on their car and its helps to know what goes where and how it works and to just keep in ones mind to know what the dealer is really doing when they try talking some jargon to you if you get my drift. Thanks for an help or comments.
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Old 06-11-2014, 05:05 PM   #2
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i dont have one but it sounds like the pressure is too high or something tripping the safety for that and then when the air circulates a while the pressure comes down to low enough were it will let the compressor kick on then its fine. i dont know if they have a setting wrong or a bad pressure sensor or reading it through the pcm and not regular a\c gauges. something like that
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Old 06-11-2014, 05:42 PM   #3
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I had a situation similar to this on the park ave, where the compressor would always spin up the and clutch when cold. However once things warmed up under the hood & around the engine, the clutch would stop spinning. One day when it was not working when it should have been, I decided to carefully grab a hold of the wire going into the clutch coil and move the wires around with car running, ...and suddenly the compressor clutch kicks back in.
I had to obtain the correct pigtail connector and solder it in. Now it works right.
Hope this may be helpful..worth checking out..bad connector, clutch coil and or & wire going onto or above clutch intermittent= eeek.

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Old 06-11-2014, 11:51 PM   #4
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I don't think there is anything wrong with your car.....

Also if you turn the A/C on and have the Auto control module center setting at max high and dial down a couple degrees at a time wait a few seconds then dial down some more the air usually kicks in cold at about anything under 80f degrees or below.....but at 72 degrees if in auto the fans shut off like its reached the temperature selected but its still hotter than heck inside and 90 degrees outside, then dialing down to 70f degrees it kicks in under Auto mode then as cold air starts blowing instead of hot air. Its very confusing details I know but this climate control GM/BUICK uses has many quirks I am finding out from the many owners of the newer vehicles past few years.

If you want cold air, why in the world would you have the numerical setting on 72 or above? Especially on a hot day?

Think about this....your coldest numerical setting is 60, your hottest setting is 90(both ends are extremes, when on 60, that air could get below 50F...when on 90, you can have upwards of 150F coming out)......If you had an old system with the manual sliding lever, all the way to the left would correspond to the 60, and all the way to the right would be the 90......if you had the lever in the middle, that would correspond to about 75.......

Now with that old system, when you wanted cooling on a hot day, would you ever have that lever in the middle at 75? of course not........you would have it all the way to the left......and then when the car was too cold, you might bump it slightly to the right......it'* the same for this system, put that sucker on 60 and MAX or RECIRC, and that system should freeze you out of the car......

Most people look at the 60 to 90 like a thermostat....but it'* not...it'* just a range for the air mix temp....think of it this way.....you can have 50F air coming out of a register on a 90 degree day.......if you put your hand on the register, does it not feel cold? Now hold that hand about 2 feet away.....does it feel as cold? No, because it'* mixing with the air in the cab.....

So when you are in AUTO mode and set the temp for 70, you are probably getting close to 70 degree air coming out of the register, and when return air is getting close to the temp, the blower motor will start to slow down, because the control head has achieved it'* goal......if you were in your house, and set your thermostat to 70, would you be cool or warm? Warm of course......but you want cold air in this hot car....that temp setting should be set for 60 on a hot car at startup.......60 is max cold, and will not adjust as the car cools down.....then when it gets too cool for comfort, raise it up to 65-69.......you will never get a cool car at 70 or above on a hot day.....you want that car to get as cold as it can, as soon as possible....only way to do that is start it off at 60, in RECIRC......
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Old 08-17-2014, 12:09 AM   #5
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I thought I would get back to you here to let you know the car is fixed been several weeks working the air everyday and a few thousand miles later has ensured the problem is fixed. Showing 84,125 miles now. Made some trips to Vegas in hot days worked great NEVER failed once.
First thing I did was check this was done REMEMBER I had no codes but checked anyway:
Quote:
This bulletin was out:

Doc# ID 2740960


Code #PI06611: Poor A.C performance, A/C Intermittently Blow Warm Air, Lack of or reduced Air Flow-(Nov 22,2011)

Models:
2011 Buick Lacrosse
2011 Buick Regal
2011 Cadillac SRX
2011 GMC Terrain

Condition/Concern:

Some customers may complain about intermittent A/C performance issues. Symptons may include:

- Intermittently th A/C stops blowing cold air
- A/C only blows warm or hoy air
- Lack of air flow or reduced flow from A/C vents

Recommendation/instructions

Perform the A/C System Performance Testing to verify the system is properly functioning and/or repir accordingly. If no issues are found, reprogram the BCM with latest software update.
My car was up to date and passed test go figure...now to the fix

The problem was solved by checking the car in morning when the air worked great when things were at lower temperatures outside between 70-80 degrees. Wife drive to work comes out in afternoon at 4:30pm pst around 100 plus degrees constantly around here in central calif. Turn air on and it comes on blowing hot air right away, and it stays hot after 10 minutes or so and no work. When and if it does work at all, if lucky in a spurt, manual or auto makes no difference, it works pretty good for a few but still seems like it'* not as cold as during last year in the hot days, then it shuts down to hot air rest of drive home from work. Another note here: when the cars AC stopped blowing cold air I would stop car leave it running and you could see the AC compressor still turning so the compressor is not being turned off by anything that'* a good sign.

Week end roles around get up in morning (8:00 am) take care to an old time mechanic racing car friend and we check the AC pressure both low and High side with engine off not running. All is right in specs for car. We check the car when running all is in specs.

I drive the car for a bit it works for a round trip of 20 miles then back home park car outside in the sun. I wait till afternoon Now its 2:00 pm afternoon...outside temp is at 103 degrees. Get in car inside hotter than hell since my car is jet black paint and jet black interior it does keep it hot in and out side on hot days. Start car air on ,tried manual and auto, and it blows nothing but hot air for five minutes check compressor .. it'* on and turning fine but no cold air, no weird noises all appears normal.

Now drive car to friend again he hooks stuff and gauges ect again. He check the AC low and high side again while running and while engine off. He finds there'* an imbalance between the low and high side when running that'* out of car specs. Its not much but enough to cause the car not to have cold air come out the Evaporator side into the cars vents..it just stays hot air period.

He set the balance for low and high side pressures, naturally while engine running, keeping with in specs till it started working great.. cold air flowed best ever like new again. Once he found its happy place he checked specs we were still in specs but showed it was balanced and all was working well. I drove the car to a local store to buy some stuff that was 60 mile round trip. All worked great matter of fact I set the auto to 72 degrees and it kept it there great. The car now gets cold so that you don't want to set to low of an inside temp but the auto and manual work like the day I bought the car over two years ago.

So be advised your car may need some TLC after its gets a few miles doesn't mean it'* bad just need some TLC in some of its setting at times. I had to many dealers that couldn't get the problem to happen or didn't spend the time like I did to see the probelm and No leaks of the AC system its been checked by dealer and others more than once. Car has 84,125 miles now on it wife'* driven car to and from work for a few weeks now still temps in the 100 to 108 in afternoons around here and the car has not failed to provide cold air even once in all that time.

Now one would have thought the dealers should have caught this yet then again no codes were thrown in the AC computer modules or any of the cars systems for that matter. But the dealers were looking at it and taking a hammer, and to them, all problem looked like a nail, it seemed to me.

Anyway I wasn't going to get into the technical stuff with my race car friend who tears this stuff down with his eyes closed, I just wanted to get it fixed using some old time common things approach and some logical thinking to it and now its fixed. I have so many dealers and non owners of this type car say that couldn't have fixed it...where and how many time have I and others heard such things before.

The cars today have some logic from yesterday yet they do have lots of added parts just to control some thing like air conditioning. Sometimes what works in the "box" will be something working out side the "box". That'* life my friends and the way of our cars today as well as yesterday. I know one thing, I know where and what every part is and does on my car now in the Air Condition system. HVAC Module and BCM are just some key players for a start.

And it all turns out to be a little pressure problem with temps..I won't forget this one that'* for sure. Well, I hope this helps someone else, seems after I had my problem I ran into some other Buick owners of newer cars with a like problem and so far they did the check of Compressor the way I did and have all had the same fix done and fixed there problems as well. Seems this is a problem among more than a few Buick owners I ran across in other places now. Once thing for sure...dealer labor is $103 an hour here and when certain warranties are over just testing for something can get expensive. I know my car I know how it works and when its not working correctly I know it. I got the books and some test gear but I also know when its time to get some real help. I'm lucky to have my race car friend, he'* got more tech gear than the dealer just hope I don't have to need him again.

Hell just went down last week with my car and they did a recall had to reprogram the firmware of the BCM (Body Control Module) so it would give correct display when a turn signal lamp was out in driver/passenger side front.

Quote:
2011-2013 model year Buick Regal and 2013 model year Chevrolet Malibus equipped with front turn signals that use two bulbs in each front turn signal. If one of the two bulbs burns out in either signal, the turn-signal indicator on the instrument panel still will flash normally, giving the driver no warning of the problem.

Dealers will reprogram the body control module to fix the condition. GM knows of no crashes, injuries or complaints related to this issue.
Dam ain't life great...LOL Well that'* my story hope one here never has to have any weird problems but they are out there that for sure.

Also found out this from Gm site during my hunt into AC problem.
Quote:

Do not swap control modules. It'* a word of caution that bears repeating as more new GM models are introduced with the Global Architecture electrical system.

These models now include:

•2012-2014 Sonic and Verano (and, in Canada, Orlando)
•2011-2014 Cruze and Volt
•2010-2014 LaCrosse, Regal, SRX, Camaro, Equinox and Terrain

The Global Architecture electrical system does not allow control modules to be swapped between vehicles. Swapping control modules will result in a no start condition on both vehicles and will damage both modules due to the new vehicle security code protocol (environment).

Do not swap the following control modules:

•Engine Control Module (ECM)
•Radio
•Body Control Module (BCM)
•Electronic Brake Control Module (EBCM)
•Sensing and Diagnostic Module (SDM)
•Transmission Control Module (TCM)
•Electronic Climate Control (HVAC)
•Electric Power Steering
•Hybrid Powertrain Control Module
•Vehicle Communication Interface Module
•Instrument Panel Cluster

List may be updated in the future adding more vehicles
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Old 08-17-2014, 11:32 AM   #6
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Glad your race car friend was able to figure it out, thank you very much for taking the time to write out the long post on how he figured it out, that may help others in the future!
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Old 08-19-2014, 12:08 PM   #7
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"I drive the car for a bit it works for a round trip of 20 miles then back home park car outside in the sun. I wait till afternoon Now its 2:00 pm afternoon...outside temp is at 103 degrees. Get in car inside hotter than hell since my car is jet black paint and jet black interior it does keep it hot in and out side on hot days. Start car air on ,tried manual and auto, and it blows nothing but hot air for five minutes check compressor .. it'* on and turning fine but no cold air, no weird noises all appears normal.

Now drive car to friend again he hooks stuff and gauges ect again. He check the AC low and high side again while running and while engine off. He finds there'* an imbalance between the low and high side when running that'* out of car specs. Its not much but enough to cause the car not to have cold air come out the Evaporator side into the cars vents..it just stays hot air period.

He set the balance for low and high side pressures, naturally while engine running, keeping with in specs till it started working great.. cold air flowed best ever like new again. Once he found its happy place he checked specs we were still in specs but showed it was balanced and all was working well. I drove the car to a local store to buy some stuff that was 60 mile round trip. All worked great matter of fact I set the auto to 72 degrees and it kept it there great. The car now gets cold so that you don't want to set to low of an inside temp but the auto and manual work like the day I bought the car over two years ago."

Not sure what you mean by set the balance......did he add refrigerant to the car?
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Old 08-19-2014, 04:34 PM   #8
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Some cars, he explained can be in specs but at high outside ambient temps the system, like mine, that'* got over 80,000 plus miles on it, may be just the upper and lower side of specs so close to the limits yet with in the limits its still fall in specs, yet can cause a system to act nuts like mine. So that'* why he needed to see the car when its doing it actual thing at its worst. He did and he fixed in right away.

Many cars get touchy these days and he'* seeing things like this in more than one system have some strange effects on cars built in last few years. Dealers changing or shotgunning parts is an answer to many times when they really aren't sure about what is wrong. When dealing with noises and intermittent so called problems they call the owner nuts its his mind its out to lunch. But I know how my car has worked from day one and when anything is not right I tell right away a problem has or is developing.

I'll try to explain it as my friend did to me when I asked him but he used a lot more techie terms of his trade as well so bear with me. No refrigerant was added to the car. A term you may be more familiar with here is pressures are "equalized" he told me for some see it that way.

The term "balancing" is a term sometimes used in or by the A/C repair persons that refers to adjusting the level of charge. It'* a pretty arcane term, but it'* more accurate than "charging" since sometimes the system is overcharged or appears to be overcharged when outside ambient temptures are in 90 plus degrees of heat and a car has been sitting in it for a few hours. A refrigeration system is properly charged by adjusting the referigerant level so that the evaporator is producing the correct amount of superheat for the particular referigerant and expansion valve. Reminder "Superheat" is the measure of how much heat is being transferred.

It has all the bearing, because it'* going to try to maintain a constant evaporator condition regardless of the charge. Its all relevant to what low and high side pressures are correct because they are affected by more factors, such as outdoor ambient temps and evaporator return air temp, then they are refrigerant quanity. Technically, the amount of heat absorbed into the system after the evaporator before entering the compressor is the only truly accurate way to charge it, which is exactly what the expansion valve maintains or try'* to. Expansion valve was and is good after testing it by his gear.

The expansion valve is a key player in that it removes pressure from the liquid refrigerant to allow expansion or change of state from a liquid to a vapor in the evaporator.

The high-pressure liquid refrigerant entering the expansion valve is quite warm. This may be verified by feeling the liquid line at its connection to the expansion valve. The liquid refrigerant leaving the expansion valve is quite cold. The orifice within the valve does not remove heat, but only reduces pressure. Heat molecules contained in the liquid refrigerant are thus allowed to spread as the refrigerant moves out of the orifice. Under a greatly reduced pressure the liquid refrigerant is at its coldest as it leaves the expansion valve and enters the evaporator.

Pressures at the inlet and outlet of the expansion valve will closely approximate gauge pressures at the inlet and outlet of the compressor in most systems. The similarity of pressures is caused by the closeness of the components to each other. The slight variation in pressure readings of a very few pounds is due to resistance, causing a pressure drop in the lines and coils of the evaporator and condenser.

Quote:
The tech bullet GM put out in 2011 shows just how much many things in modern cars can effect things just like an A/C system that is no longer a simple system anymore. It can be effected just by "Buggy" firmware (Software) in any of the "Programmable" modules,which in essence are most all just glorified computers in a smaller way but yet very powerfu, and can cause similiar conditions as my problem. The reprograming of the BCM ,as shown from data bullet below info, can have great effects on the A/C since the A/C is something also under its control in a large partt during the cars operation.

[Condition/Concern]:

Some customers may complain about intermittent A/C performance issues. Symptons may include:

- Intermittently the A/C stops blowing cold air
- A/C only blows warm or hot air
- Lack of air flow or reduced flow from A/C vents

[Recommendation/instructions]

Perform the A/C System Performance Testing to verify the system is properly functioning and/or repair accordingly. If no issues are found, reprogram the BCM with latest software update.
The very technical details aren't important here my friend said just accept the fact it works, its still in specs, has the correct lubricant to refrgerant ratio levels,you can get the pressure/temperature charts from dealers factory manuals, the system must be running and stabilized before you will get an accurate reading and so on, and so on to much info coming out (LOL) was his answer to me when asked. AS a rule for him he always "Looks" for any restrictions like leaves, bugs or dirt that would keep air from passing over the condenser and also checks if there'* an inside "cabin air filter",mine does have such an animal,(it costs more than my engine air filter by the way),to ensure that it is not clogged,always just for a start since its a simple thing and to see just where he can tell if me,the owner,has been doing normal maintence in keeping up my vehilce since these things can have different effects on the cold air flow in the A/C system.

His equiptment he uses is quite eleborate and monitors computer modules and the "A/C low side/high side gases" and "low side/high side liquid pressures" during testing.

To me there'* just too much electronics in modern cars just inviting something sooner than later to go wrong. Its amazing with all the computer type modules one'* car has in newer vehilces now a days we don't have more problmes but we do get and have some very unique problems these days.

Interactive Drive Control System (IDCS)
Driving Control Module
Engine Control Module (ECM)
Radio Control Module
Body Control Module (BCM)
Electronic Brake Control Module (EBCM)
Sensing and Diagnostic Module (SDM)
Transmission Control Module (TCM)
Electronic Climate Control (HVAC)
Electric Power Steering Module
Hybrid Powertrain Control Module
Vehicle Communication Interface Module
Instrument Panel Cluster module

It has Bluetooth, XM satellite radio and OnStar. Includes a nine-speaker Harmon Kardon audio system, power sunroof, and Ultrasonic rear parking assist and backup warning system. two twelve-volt outlets, with the first at the base of the dash, and the second inside the center console. A 120-volt AC power outlet is included with and is located at the rear of the console. USB iPod and auxiliary audio/video inputs are also located inside the center console. It has eight-way power drivers seat and four-way power lumbar support for both the driver and passenger bucket seats. Three-level seat heaters and six speed auto tranny equipment with my car as well. Theres more to the car than I have mentioned but I no doubt haven't given all the modules and things that are there but that is just to show to ones eye these days of the things that can cause some strange things when and if they do decide to.

My first car with A/C was back in late 1969,new,a chevy camero with a 4-barrel holly dubble pumper. Had the Z28 option with the 302 cid small block. It was backed by Muncie four-speed with a standard Hurst shifter. Got this car when I just got back from Vietnam. Things were much simplier then except for the crazy war of course. Well enough talk, now I'm gonna enjoy my cars till the next problem for sooner or later in our lives they will no doubt pop up...just to much cramed into cars these days. Good luck to all with newer cars for its only gonna get more "things" into future now cars and hopefully they will troubleshoot themselves and maybe fix themselves as well..lets hope.

I'll be gone for sometime now moving to Australia in a couple days be a bit before Im back on the net. Thanks guys nice site here.
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Old 08-19-2014, 11:33 PM   #9
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It'* very possible it was low on refrigerant. Most modern vehicles have a variable displacement compressor. When low they can still pull pretty close to the same pressures that they should, but don't cool as well.

My dad'* 02 Jeep Grand Cherokee apparently has a setup like this too. His A/C was mediocre at best, but pressures were pretty much in spec. 2 cans of refrigerant later and the A/C is freaking cold, even with similar pressures to what it had when I started, only this time the computer was leaning on the radiator fans much harder. I could also hear a noise from the compressor which I suspect was the mechanism adjusting the pitch of the compressor.
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Old 08-20-2014, 12:25 AM   #10
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Sounds like he is saying he removed some of the refrigerant to me, as he says he did not add any, but "equalized the pressure".
To me that means he has to have done one or the other, add or removed some from the low, or high pressure lines to get that equalization.
I thought the hotter is was the higher the pressure needed to be, of course I am no AC expert, just going off of the fact that when you use a recharge kit, according to the dial when you adjust it for a higher ambient temp, then it requires a little more pressure.

I wonder what kind of unit he used, I'd love to have one of these, but they are expensive!
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