Last post on Jun 23, 2012 at 9:34 AM
You are in the Subaru Forester
What is this discussion about?
Subaru Forester, SUV
#11 of 20 Re: 2010 Forester AC Sporadically Stops Working [gigoypotpot]
Mar 11, 2010 (1:05 pm)
It sounds as if the A/C cooling evaporator is freezing up and blocking all system airflow. Can you hear the blower motor running but no airflow..??
There should be a thermistor mounted near the outlet airflow side of the evaporator and if the airflow temperature is below ~35F the A/C compressor should be cycled off. Also, the A/C compressor should not run at all if the outside temperature is below about 35F.
The bad news is that this type of failure cannot be reliably replicated since climatic conditions, primarily relative humidity and dewpoint, are part of the cause.
"..on my way UP Big Bear..."
That would be one of the more common climatic conditions, driving from a warmer and relatively humid climate into a COLD and DRY (low humidity) climate.
#12 of 20 Re: 2010 Forester AC Sporadically Stops Working [gigoypotpot]
Mar 11, 2010 (1:20 pm)
"..So, I turned on the AC,..."
If you happened to have already had the system in any one of the windshield defrost/defog/demist modes, even just footwell and windshield combined, the A/C was already operating but not necessarily with the indicator on. Additionally some of the newer more modern climate control designs will automatically start the A/C in certain climatic conditions to help prevent cabin humdity buildup and the subsequent windshield fogging.
I have no question at this point as to what was happened, your evaporator was icing, freezing up, due to the A/C continuing to operate and chill the evaporator surfaces below freezing.
What I don't understand is why the dealer wouldn't recognize the problem given the systems you related here.
Most likely you have a shorted or faulty OAT sensor or evaporator outflow temperature sensor.
#13 of 20 Similar problem
Jun 25, 2010 (4:12 pm)
I bought a 2010 Subaru Forester 2.5X Premium in Feb and have had problems with the A/C ever since.
Basically what mine is doing is that it runs just fine and will blow cold air for about a 45 second interval and then the air temperature warms ever so slightly and the humidity increases for about 30 seconds... then it cycles back to cold. This happens over and over and over in cycles, slowly getting colder and less humid and then warmer and more humid.
I've taken it to the dealer 3 times... they've even kept it for 3 days... I've gotten Subaru of America involved and the dealer says "they can't find anything wrong." They acknowledge that it's doing that... but say this is normal. However, I have friends who have the same car and not the same problem. I even test drove another JUST LIKE mine the day I picked it up after they had it for 3 days and it didn't do it.
They're solution is to press the recirculate button. But that only slightly changes the cycle as it's not pulling in the humid air from outside but rather the slightly less humid (and decreasingly so) air from inside.
Anyway, the point of me tagging this onto this thread is to wonder if the "thermistor mounted near the outlet airflow side of the evaporator" mentioned two posts above this one might have something to do with it?
I've had a mechanic look at it (without undoing anything) and he thinks it's the clutch... but since it's brand new, I'm not having anyone but a Subaru authorized servicer touch it. Granted, there's only 1 in an hour of me.
I've already posted on the SubaruForester forums with no luck (just all the owners saying this is NOT normal).
#14 of 20 Re: Similar problem [ohmikeyoh]
Oct 04, 2010 (6:58 am)
Hello ohmikeyoh. Has this problem been resolved for you? I'm curious because I've test drove one 2010 Subaru Forester 2.5 X about 3 weeks ago with the exact same problem. The dealer said he didn't know if it was normal saying "I don't think that's normal." Obviously it isn't but a solution to this problem is something I'm still trying to look for.
#15 of 20 Re: 2010 Forester AC Sporadically Stops Working [gigoypotpot]
Oct 05, 2010 (9:29 am)
In my experiience most dealers will sub out AC repairs to a specialty shop and won't bother with this type of work since they are only parts changers and do not have any repair experience..
#16 of 20 Re: 2010 Forester AC Sporadically Stops Working [fnamowicz]
Oct 06, 2010 (7:30 pm)
Imaginary, yes, unfortunately. And you know what... I was having MORE problems. Every time I'd start the car cold (not having been run in over 3 or 4 hours), when the AC unit kicked on it would make a HORRIBLE grinding noise. My partner is a mechanic and said this was not normal and would eventually ruin the compressor. I took it to the dealer, they kept it for 4 days (FOUR DAYS) only to tell me nothing was wrong and that was usual operation.
I'm sorry but you don't have to keep something 4 days to say, "Oh yeah... that's normal operation!"
So, yes, I'm still having this issue. Should be interesting to see what winter brings!
I love my Forester... but I honestly think that they may be having some issues with their AC units. I've test driven over 10 of these and NONE of the others did this. None. But I know that sometimes things happen on the assembly lines and random parts might be substandard from a supplier...
fnamowicz... I wish they would send it out to someone because it needs to be fixed. Luckily I got the Subaru extended warranty, so I just hope it breaks within that and doesn't take anything else with it when it goes!
#17 of 20 Re: 2010 Forester AC Sporadically Stops Working [ohmikeyoh]
Oct 07, 2010 (9:43 am)
I wouldn't wait that long. If it makes the noise every time you run it, there is no reason why they shouldn't fix it. If that dealer is not helpful, I would elevate it to Subaru directly and recount your experience at the dealer. If you have a different dealer within reasonable distance, you could take it there, too.
#18 of 20 2007 Forester A/C works for a little while and stops.
Jun 22, 2012 (2:30 pm)
My Forester now has 129k and over the last year the ac has stopped working as it once did which was pretty good. I noticed last season that it was not staying on. Now this year I have a problem with it working intermittently. Sometimes it cools for a few minutes and sometimes it cools for a half hour. Eventually it always stops working. I shut it off and leave it off for a while but continue driving and then it starts working again for a brief time. Any ideas on what is happening?
#19 of 20 Similar Problem
Jun 23, 2012 (3:20 am)
I have a 2003 Outback 3.0 and two years ago my air conditioning stopped working. I had it checked twice and a dye test was done as well.
It works sometimes and doesn't at other time. My wife can tell as soon as it has stopped working because she can smell a difference in our car.
I have discovered that if I shut the car off and restart it while going down the road (not a great thing to do on the highway) but it almost always starts working immediately again. Air however always continues to pass through the vents and isn't blocked like the Forester problems described in this post. Any ideas?
#20 of 20 Re: 2007 Forester A/C works for a little while and stops. [mxyz1022]
Jun 23, 2012 (9:34 am)
"... problem with it working intermittently. Sometimes it cools for a few minutes and sometimes it cools for a half hour. Eventually it always stops working. I shut it off and leave it off for a while but continue driving and then it starts working again for a brief time. Any ideas on what is happening?"
It could be low on refrigerant. When the compressor loses suction on refrigerant, it has nothing to compress so cooling stops. The refrigerant also contains lubricant, so whenever you feel loss of cooling, the compressor is also being damaged.