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 Post subject: Strange fault with air conditioning, 2005 Colt Plus
PostPosted: November 4th, 2017, 8:28 am 
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Joined: November 4th, 2017, 8:13 am
Posts: 2
Location: New Zealand
Model: CZT (2005 - Present)
I have a strange fault with my air conditioning system that the service centre hasn't been able to fix.

This only occurs in summer when I'm trying to use the A/C to cool the car down - no problem with heating in winter.

Basically what happens is that I can start the car up and it doesn't matter how hot the inside of the car is, the air conditioner will work 100% fine - I can boost it all the way up to 4 for the airflow and it will keep running this way for 20+ minutes without any issues at all.

Until I stop the engine, and the inside of the cabin is hot (which is typical on a hot day of course).

Then, next time I start the engine, even if it's only 2 minutes after I had stopped the engine (eg drive to a shop, park car, quickly complete purchase and jump back in car to drive home), the air conditioner won't work at all. The little green light will show on the A/C button, and then after about 2 minutes it will flash, indicating that there's a fault with the system and that it isn't working. During this time, standard fan system to recirculate the air will be working, but there's no actual cooling going on.

Recently I've kept track of a few interesting observations, as I'm trying to get a better idea of what is happening. The first, is that there was one occasion where the A/C was working fine, parked the car at the dentist for some work, then 40 minutes later get back in the car and the A/C wouldn't work (as usual). I drove home and had lunch etc, and then went back to work 90 minutes later. This 3rd time getting in the car, the A/C still didn't work, even after having the car sit in the garage for 90 minutes doing nothing. The cabin was still kind of warm (warmer than outside air temp), so I think this fault has something to do with the cabin temperature being high (which, of course, is when you actually want to use the A/C after all).

The other interesting data point was today, I drove across town for 30 minutes. It was quite a warm day so I had the A/C on, and conscious of this annoying problem, I put the airflow at 3 in an effort to get the cabin nice and cool. When I arrived at my destination I parked and did my business, and got back to the car within about 5 minutes. It was parked in the shade. This time (first time in a LONG time), the A/C actually worked straight away when I started the engine! I then drove back into the city on my way home and stopped off at a supermarket for about 15 minutes. Then sure enough, the A/C didn't work, and didn't work again for the next stop and subsequent journey home.

I've had the car in with the service people once a year for the past 3 years and have complained of this problem, but they've been unable to fix it - they've sent it to a "specialist" air conditioning place, who have obviously never encountered the problem and despite my description seem to be mystified as to what is wrong, because they say they "can't fault it" and so apparently can't even attempt to fix it. So I was hoping that someone on this forum might have a guestimate as to what is wrong with my car, so I can tell them "it might be xxx problem" and maybe I can get this annoying fault fixed.

The oddest thing about this, to me, is that the A/C can work fine, and works at full blast for a long time, with no issues. So it's obviously not a lack of refrigerant or low charge or anything like that. The fault only occurs after I stop the engine, and apparently when the cabin is warm/hot - I haven't tried measuring how hot it needs to be to occur, but I'd say I put the A/C on when the temperature inside is anything above 18C and it's a sunny day.

This is a 2005 Mitsubishi Colt Plus, 2nd hand Japanese import to New Zealand.

Edit:
I now see that there's a CZ specific technical issues forum - if a mod could move this thread to there, that'd be great. I did look to see if there was a technical faults forum when I initially signed up, but expected those forums to be much higher up the index list than they are, so didn't see them.


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 Post subject: Re: Strange fault with air conditioning, 2005 Colt Plus
PostPosted: November 6th, 2017, 8:15 pm 
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Joined: October 8th, 2007, 10:23 pm
Posts: 4749
Location: Coventry, UK
Model: CJ (1996 - 2004)
: CJ RS EvoBorg 99% Complete
I must say I've never heard of that issue before! It sounds like it could be a faulty relay, which then isn't activating the clutch mechanism in the A/C compressor, therefore not getting any cooling. That would be my guess anyway!


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 Post subject: Re: Strange fault with air conditioning, 2005 Colt Plus
PostPosted: November 8th, 2017, 9:30 pm 
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Joined: November 4th, 2017, 8:13 am
Posts: 2
Location: New Zealand
Model: CZT (2005 - Present)
Right, but wouldn't it be possible for that to fail sometimes when the car is first started?

I've never had it fail the first time the car is started. But it pretty much 100% fails on subsequent engine starts.


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 Post subject: Re: Strange fault with air conditioning, 2005 Colt Plus
PostPosted: November 10th, 2017, 12:28 pm 
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The Allrounder
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Joined: October 8th, 2007, 10:23 pm
Posts: 4749
Location: Coventry, UK
Model: CJ (1996 - 2004)
: CJ RS EvoBorg 99% Complete
Ok. It could be that the system has overheated. I'd suggest before finishing your first journey, to turn the A/C off a couple of minutes before you stop driving, to give the A/C rad chance to cool down. Give that a try, if it works that it may be a case that the A/C rad isn't getting enough air/is damaged etc.


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 Post subject: Re: Strange fault with air conditioning, 2005 Colt Plus
PostPosted: November 12th, 2017, 9:39 am 
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New to this Colt stuff
New to this Colt stuff

Joined: August 21st, 2017, 2:12 pm
Posts: 18
Location: Brighton
Model: CZ (2004 - Present)
: Colt 09 CZ2 1.3l 5dr.
11.08.17
Some years ago I had a Peugeot 406 V6 with a very similar problem. After year of no-one being able to find the reason I bought the workshop manual and started on the system one Good Friday, checking every contact, relay and cable connection. After a day and a half I had stripped out the front interior. And there it was - a cable connector had not been clipped together and had half worked its way out. The effect was that when it was warm, expansion made the connections intermittent. When cold it was fine which is not what aircon is for! Clipped it properly and it worked perfectly for the next ten years.
On research I discovered that the previous owner had had a problem with the OAT indicator and his Peugeot garage had tried to find out why. They didn't but in the process of searching they failed to lock the main aircon control cable under the bulkhead.
I had earlier found the bad connector for the OAT which was in the passenger wingmirror. I shudder to think how much they charged the previous owner for inserting a fault and not curing the original problem. And that's why I do it all myself.


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