Just like other parts of the car, it is difficult to predict how long a Porsche A/C compressor will last. Even if it is a luxury brand, many factors contribute to the wear and tear of the A/C unit. Basically, it depends on the car’s age and how frequent the A/C is used.
As the car ages, the A/C compressor have already sustained a lot of use thus parts start to malfunction. You then begin to feel that the vents do not blow cool air like before. Usually, this begins to happen within 8-10 years if the car is bought brand-new. Technically, this is the same with the usual life-span of the car before it starts to break down due to age.
Signs of An A/C Compressor Failure
The main purpose of a Porsche A/C compressor is to compress refrigerated air and send it to the condenser where a cooling gas chills the air before it leaves through the vent. Obviously, the first sign that the compressor is failing is when there is no enough cool air, or none at all, that is blowing from the vents.
An irritating noise as soon as you switch the A/C on is also a tell-tale sign of a compressor problem. Additionally, when there is a presence of coolants due to a leak is also an indication that there is something wrong not only with the compressor but the whole cooling system as well.
What Causes an A/C Compressor Failure?
Because the compressor has movable parts, sufficient lubrication is necessary for it to work well. Refrigerants or coolants contribute to the lubrication that the compressor needs. Once there is a refrigerant leak, the lubricant is reduced thereby excessively stressing the compressor parts. There will be metal abrasion on the components which will lead to a blockage of the inner control valve. Additionally, compressors are highly sensitive to low refrigerant or oil levels so being subjected to an insufficient amount for a long period will ultimately result to a complete failure.
Is a Replacement Necessary?
When diagnosing air conditioning problems, the Porsche A/C compressor is usually the first one to be checked by the mechanic. This is because it is rarely because of other reasons that the A/C unit fails. Even when the underlying problem is a leak, once the symptoms have started, then the compressor has been contaminated. This means that there is no other choice but to remove the compressor and replace it with a new one. Depending on which parts are affected, the condenser, expansion valve, or the drier should also be replaced.