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Air Conditioner Stop Leak - Does it Work?

I bought my 2007 2WD LX last spring (April) and it served me well all summer and fall. I drove it very little through the winter (I drove my rusty 1987 Nissan pickup instead). Come spring 2008, and I noticed that the A/C compressor in my Element wouldn't engage. I took it to the dealer in May, and he said all the Freon had leaked out. He charged it up with Freon/dye, but couldn't find the leak. So far (end of June), the A/C is working fine, but I'm worried that I have a super-slow leak somewhere and the A/C will be empty again next spring. I see that the auto parts stores sell cans of R134A with "stop leak" in them, has anyone tried it? Does it work without clogging up the expansion valve or other parts of the sytem?:confused:
 

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To deactivate automatic a/c feature:

1. Turn vehicle off.
2. Turn fan knob off.
3. Turn temperature knob all the way to the left (blue area..
4. Turn vent knob to panel only setting (next to max. a/c..
5. Hold down both air re-circulation button and a/c button while turning the key to the "run" position (one short of starting..
6. Continue holding for 7 seconds until air re-circulation button stops flashing.
7. Anytime you engage defrost or defrost/heat positions, the A/C will automatically turn on. Press the A/C button to turn the A/C compressor OFF, the light will go out.

NOTE: If the climate control computer is disconnected from battery power, it will likely revert to factory settings.

To reactivate automatic a/c feature:

1. Turn vehicle off.
2. Turn fan knob off.
3. Turn temperature knob all the way to the left (blue area..
4. Turn vent knob all the way to the right (defrost position..
5. Hold down both air re-circulation button and a/c button while turning the key to the "run" position (one short of starting..
6. Continue holding for 7 seconds until air re-circulation button stops flashing.
7. After the 7 seconds described in step 6, the re-circulation button will start to flash. Continue to hold the button for another 7 seconds. After this, the a/c light will turn to green and it's finished!
Is this anywhere in the Owners Manual?

My main complaint is I do not like that the a/c can be on or off and it doesnt matter if the light is on or off.

For example if you go to defrost it turns on the a/c but not the light. When you switch back the the vent does it keep the a/c on or go back to off?

I noticed if you go to max a/c it will turn on recirculate and a/c and when you go back to vent it will shut both of them back off.

I would assume thats how it works for the a/c defroster. It turns on the a/c when you go to defroster and then shuts it off when you go back to vent.

If you do this mod will the light then show the actual status of the a/c compressor or will it still do whatever it wants?
 

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Is this anywhere in the Owners Manual?

My main complaint is I do not like that the a/c can be on or off and it doesnt matter if the light is on or off.

For example if you go to defrost it turns on the a/c but not the light. When you switch back the the vent does it keep the a/c on or go back to off?

I noticed if you go to max a/c it will turn on recirculate and a/c and when you go back to vent it will shut both of them back off.

I would assume thats how it works for the a/c defroster. It turns on the a/c when you go to defroster and then shuts it off when you go back to vent.

If you do this mod will the light then show the actual status of the a/c compressor or will it still do whatever it wants?
I am not sure about the answer, but agree with the frustration in your question. imo there should be two modes, automatic, and manual. Manual mode shows and DOES what you ask it to. A/C on, A/C off, (one of the voices in my head says, "car stop trying to think for me"). The climate I live in is so dry, that even slight interior fogging is removed quickly with heat, and never needs A/C.
 

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Ok I just did this. Thanks everyone. I just have a couple of questions.

I understand you want the a/c on for defrost and max a/c is a/c on and recirc on.

Here is were I get confused with the OEM settings...

When you switch to floor it automatically shuts off recirculate. Reason? Is it because it takes the recirculated air from the floor so if you have the floor and recirculate on it is just sucking in the air it just blew out before it goes anywhere in the cabin?

When you go to max a/c it puts the a/c on and recirc on. When you go to just the panel it leaves the a/c on and shuts off recirc. Any reason why it doesnt shut both off? Is it for convenience?

Anyway I did this "trick" so hopefully now the lights actually show what is going on. I like how the a/c light comes on with defroster now. like I said hopefully there isnt some other combination that would cause the lights to show the wrong thing.
 

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Can't I just hit the A/C button and turn it off?
 

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Can't I just hit the A/C button and turn it off?
Yes....but how will you know it is "on" so that you can turn it off? The light won't be lit (in auto mode). When you turn it from defrost to vent the a/c will still be running, but the light will be out....so you think it is alread "off."

Doing this mod dosn't take any features away....it just makes the indicator light "tell the truth."
 

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Now that this post has been out for years, and I just did mine last night- I am wondering if anyone has had any problems w/ their A/C? Just curious since there were concerns early on in posting of the seals??
 

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Discussion Starter #129
Now that this post has been out for years, and I just did mine last night- I am wondering if anyone has had any problems w/ their A/C? Just curious since there were concerns early on in posting of the seals??
No issues at all. Why would you expect there to be any issues? if anything it will help the compressor last longer because it isn't on as often.

Mine has been setup in this manner for 4 years without issue. I love it! Only turn the compressor on when needed.



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I don't have to cycle the A/C or use the wipers since the condensation is on the outside of the windshield.
I know this guy made this post about 4 years ago, but you can turn the heat up so you don't get condensation on the outside. This is actually what people do in the winter time (I see that the posted of the above comment is in Florida). Winter time, AC to defrost + full blast heat = super dry air

Actually it's a good thing to run the AC in the winter for a couple minutes once a week to keep the seals lubricated and to keep them from leaking. Even if you really don't need it.
 

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One of the reason's the defrost activates the AC is because the AC dries out the air, which assists with defrosting your windshield (at least, that is how it has been explained to me in the past).

So here is my question . . .

How well does the defrost work sans the AC assist? I can see real MPG benefit if I can run the defrost without the AC, but I still need my defrost to work.

Thanks in advance for the opinions about to flow . . .
I always was told ( living north of the border ) that the compressor came on in Defrost mode just to run it in the winter ( helps to dry ) but the heat blowing on the glass removes the fog ... a accessory that is used should last longer ? than one that sits idle ( idly by ) .. ?
 

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No worries about lack of use....

The condesor still operates as "normal"....the "mod" just lets the little green light come on so you know what is going on.

In factory for the light does not illuminate. In "tweaked" mode, the A/C turns on with defrost, and so does the light.
 

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No worries about lack of use....

The condesor still operates as "normal"....the "mod" just lets the little green light come on so you know what is going on.

In factory for the light does not illuminate. In "tweaked" mode, the A/C turns on with defrost, and so does the light.
Although it does light up the AC button now, the main reason for doing this is that it now give you the option of turning OFF the compressor when you're in defrost mode. Something you couldn't do before this "mod". You could hit the AC button all day long and the light never came on and the compressor never shut off either.

Comes in handy for those folks living in the south west where it never really gets humid, and just blowing air is more than enough to get rid of the moisture on the inside of the window.

Although like I previously stated, it's a good idea to run the AC for a few minutes every couple of weeks to keep the seals and o-rings lubed up and to keep them from leaking on you.
 

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Works great, thanks!
 

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Did anyone see the Mythbuster show about a/c on or off and gas mileage? They found that it didn't make a difference. I did a trip to Wis. this summer with the a/c on and I still got 24 mpg on the way up and 25 mpg on the way home. (downhill to Illinois) I still had great acceleration! I think this is an odd mode. I just turn off the a/c button.
 

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great! thanks!

Ah ha!! I just went on my first real trip in my '03 E and kept wondering why the A/C was operating even when I had the button (light) in off mode.

I just followed the directions and it worked just as described. This is much more logical now. when you switch to defrost, the green A/C light turns on automatically to let you know the A/C is ON... then you just press it to turn it off if you so desire.

thank you!
 

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Thanks again EOC!!!
 
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