Got AC working with a simple fix -
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post #1 of 5 Old 09-05-2014, 03:27 PM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Simpsonville
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Got AC working with a simple fix

This may be old news but I thought I'd share just in case.


My AC wasn't working in my 97 TJ. While my Jeep was at the shop for an unrelated issue I asked them to check it. I was told I needed a new compressor. Due to cost I declined since I ride without doors most of the time anyway.

While I had my Jeep in my shop wrapping up another project on it I though I'd check out the AC. I jumped the switch on the dryer hoping the clutch would engage but it wouldn't. However I did notice that it moved towards the compressor ever so slightly. It kinda flexed maybe you'd call it. Now I do t know exactly how the compressor works but it's something along the lines of a magnet in the compressor energizes and pulls the clutch in to engage.

At this point I thought I'd try an old trick that I learned on my F350.

I removed the nut on the front of the compressor and pulled the clutch off. Just like on the Ford there were washers that act as spacers keeping the clutch off the compressor. In my case there were 3. I removed all 3 washers and reinstalled the clutch. What do you know...the clutch engaged when I turned on the AC. There was a little grinding so I removed the clutch again and put 1 washer back. Voila! I had a clutch that would engage and was able to check the freon charge. It was a little low so I added some and now have ice cold air. New compressor my foot.

Unfortunately this brought up a new issue for me that I'll put off for another day. Running on high my fan cuts out sometimes for a few seconds and then comes back. Doesn't do it on any lower speed so I'll look into that another day. I think it's a faulty fan as the speed control resistor and harness was replaced over the winter.

Hope this helps someone.

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post #2 of 5 Old 09-05-2014, 07:11 PM
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Location: Sioux Falls
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Thanks, good way to nurse a failing clutch for a while. As for the fan issue, when you are running on high speed, the resistor is bypassed. It is only in the circuit while running one of the other speeds. I suspect that you have a bad connection at the speed switch or it is melted like most TJ's.
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post #3 of 5 Old 09-05-2014, 07:30 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the info Bob. I'll pull the switch and see what I see.
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post #4 of 5 Old 09-05-2014, 09:27 PM
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1999 TJ Wrangler 
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Location: York, PA
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Just to verify when you say fan you mean your interior blower?

Just fyi my blower motor switch quit working on 2/3/4...when I pulled it there was nothing visibly wrong with the switch...maybe check it with a multimeter if nothing stands out.

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post #5 of 5 Old 09-06-2014, 11:28 AM
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2010 JK Wrangler 
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This is a good observation! I'll check mine out when it comes time to put the top back on. (I have to order a new one My Rampage didn't survive the winter, I didn't think and rolled the back window when it was 30 degrees out to put something in the back.)

1998 TJ Wrangler SE - Stone White, 2.5Ls of screaming lifter clacking power, AX5, 31" BFGoodrich All Terrain T/A KOs

2010 Wrangler Unlimited Sahara - Deep Water Blue, 3.8Ls of oil consuming fury, NSG-370, Michelin LTX A/T2 265/70/R18s
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air , air conditioner , air conditioning , clutch , compressor

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