A/C Clutch Stuck Engaged [Archive] - GrandAmGT.com Forum


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04-14-2006, 08:12 PM
Hey guys,

I took my 2001 GA / SE into the shop the other day, and the tech noticed that the AC Compressor clutch was stuck in place, even when my blower controls are in the off position, and the fan controls are on a non-AC setting, like the mid dash registers.

Apparently i've been driving like this for some time, and just didn't notice the compressor's sound. Now that I know, I can pick out the sound of the compressor whenever I drive.

Is there any way I can get the clutch to separate as it normally should when the A/C is not in use? Im burning likely 20% more fuel this way, and losing performance.

The replacement of the compressor clutch, and related costs was quoted at $350 CDN plus labour. I would really appreciate any suggestions about how I can fix this myself, perhaps some way of freeing the mechanism of the clutch.

Thanks guys, looking forward to any suggestions...

04-14-2006, 10:22 PM
The clutch is a electromagnet. You could try disconnecting the wires but that would be the same as having the switch off. It has to be held together by some mechanical means such as rust. You could try prying it apart or some WD40.

Sorry not to be more help but I've never heard of a A/C clutch being stuck on. I doubt that you are losing 20%, the A/C doesn't draw that much power when on.

04-14-2006, 10:53 PM
You're pretty much screwed I think. You could have a short in the wiring or the switch causing it to stay engaged. Pop the plug off the clutch and see if it disengages if not try and pop it loose. Hope for a short somewhere other than the compressor.

Otherwise (I'm sure you're aware by now) you're stuck paying for a new (rebuilt most likely) compressor, new receiver dryer/accumulator (whatever one you have), "new" charge of refridgerant and the labor to recover the old stuff and get the system back to par before recharge. Best part is you pay for a "new" charge despite them recycling your old stuff. Gotta love A/C systems!

04-15-2006, 07:33 AM
thats actually a cheap price. I had to get a quote for a guy with a 97 astro who wanted a new compressor. came to almst $1000.

04-15-2006, 11:51 AM
For clarification purposes, I need a new clutch and some other assembly. The fix can be done without replacing the compressor or any other major A/C part.

I will disconnect the wire today to see if it dis-engages, if not i'll pry at it lightly when its disconnected, and try some WD-40 as mentioned.

I'll let you guys know what happens.

Thanks for the feedback, this forum usually saves me so much pain. :)

04-15-2006, 12:41 PM
sorry, but we hardly ever do something like that anymore. Its cheaper, and quicker to change the whole part.