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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All

I bought the above just under a year ago and have had issues with the aircon ever since. The dealer that I bought it from took it in and re-gassed it under warranty back in March this year and I didn't even turn it on until the beginning of July, only to find that it still wasn't working. They've now had it back in and are telling me that there is a leak on the compressor that would have shown up on the diagnostics if it had been there when they re-gassed it and this is therefore a "new" issue that will not be covered by their limited warranty. My question is, are they throwing me a line of bs?

1. Would a leaking compressor fault even show on whatever "diagnostic" they claim to have been using when they re-gassed or are they just ducking the cost of compressor replacement?
2. Should the compressor be failing on an 2018 car (I have a 12 year old Insignia sat on the drive which has never had any aircon issues!)?
3. Is it possible to "over gas" the aircon and effectively damage the compressor seals?
4. I'm not that "techie" when it comes to this sort of stuff but if I took it to an aircon specialist would they be able to tell me whether the dealer is spouting crap to get out from under a chunky repair bill?
5. Is there somewhere in the UK that's good at this sort of investigation or am I just going to have to bite the bullet and front up for the cost?

All answers/help greatly appreciated.
 

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Yep, they just left the warranty building! And trying to get out of it.

The leak was there still as that's why it wasn't working in July as the gas had escaped. You 'should' use your aircon for about 30mins every month. You can increase the temp so you're not full cold in the winter.

1. No a leak is only detected by putting a UV dye, so it can be identified where the leak is in the system.
2. No, they are saying there is a leak on the compressor, but don't specify whether it is a joint on the compressor. I seriously doubt it would be a leak on the casing.
3. It is possible to over gas, but the air con machines will show readings and the operator should know what values it should be. But my experience of Audi technicians, is they are liars (As Davide would say) and incompetent. :)
4. Yes you can get a 2nd opinion.
5. there are plenty of places, you would need to state whereabouts you are.

As dealer has acknowledged the fault by attempting repair back in March, this will be recorded and you could argue an unresolved fault since buying the car. If you go armed with the info like unresolved fault and say there is obviously a leak you haven't fixed and mention taking it further (not sure if you bought from an Audi dealer) with Audi UK. The fact that they re gassed it in March proves there was a leak back in March!

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Many thanks Dave, it's looking like I was right to suspect they're just trying to wriggle out of this (FYI, it's not an Audi dealer, it's Arnold Clark). Just looking at your reply to my point 3; they claim that if there was an issue with the compressor it would have shown up when they did a re-gas as it would have been highlighted on their "diagnostic" at the time. Do you have any idea what it is they are talking about and should there be some sort of read out/report I can get from them from that time, I mean, presumably it will be on the work ticket at the point of re-gas? I very much appreciate your thoughts on this.

3. It is possible to over gas, but the air con machines will show readings and the operator should know what values it should be. But my experience of Audi technicians, is they are liars (As Davide would say) and incompetent. :)
 

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So did they put a UV dye in last time? This is the only way they would be able to spot a leak in the system/compressor. My bet is they just regassed it and gave it back to you. A leak will not show on diagnostics as this only reads sensors and components. The only way it will highlight a leak on the diagnostics is by showing a low pressure value in the system. And yes, if they did it properly as a warranty claim, it should have notes on what was done so Arnold Clark get the money back from the warranty company. If you start asking the questions of the UV dye when they re gassed it and for the warranty report, it might put them on the back foot and tell the truth. Air cons can have very small leaks that can't be tested or checked for in a day. What they should have done is put a UV dye in, re gassed and told you to return after a week or 2 as then they can check for leaks with a UV torch as this will show where the leak is if any. If you just had it regassed and you never went back, they could not have checked for tiny leaks, it's impossible to do in a day, unless it is a big leak!

The machine will do a vacuum test on the system to check for leaks, but very small leaks will not be apparent by this method unless you leave it hooked up for possibly days.

Basically they regassed and sent you on your way and because you didn't use it, it just leaked out again from I guess the same 'hole/seal' that is why it wasn't working when you bought it and wasn't working again in July. They didn't fix it, they just refilled it as it's cheaper. Ask them to prove what they 'fixed' back in March and as that would be the reason why it wasn't working when you bought it. If they had fixed it in the summer, you would have been using it and noticed it stopped working not long after they 'fixed it'. just a pity you didn't use it so they are trying to claim, becuase of the time period you have come back again, that it is a separate issue, when it clearly isn't as the problem hasn't been fixed from when you bought the car. I'm sure if you push, as it has been recorded as a fault previously, you can get them to fix it, unless they really are a dodgy company!? :)

I think it would be a big coincidence that they fixed it in March, then the compressor started leaking 4 months later!

I had mine re-gassed recently, just to check the level as it's 8 years old and don't think it's been done before, certainly not whilst I've owned it for the last 3 years, it was definitely working though and they gave me a print out from the machine to say how much it was topped up by in grams.
 
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Ps, another bit of info, all manufacturers by EU law in 2016 had to start using a new gas called R1234YF for environmentally friendly purposes. It used to be R134a.

My step daughter's 2018 Polo's air con stopped working, but it was topped up a few weeks ago and this also uses this newer gas. My bet is it isn't as good as the old stuff and more prone to leaking? I will need to check with her to see if it's still working! I've never had to have a top up done, even going back to a '96 BMW! I only had mine checked as I'm a bit pedantic with my car. :)
 
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You're welcome!
That's the issue with being fobbed off by a garage, they rely on the customer not knowing about cars, so they can fob you off! :)
 
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WHAT a sad but not unusual story guys and well done Dave, for me that is what this forum is ALL about. Blain mate you need to use the aircon system ALWAYS when you drive the car, otherwise the system will dry out and leave you more prone to leaks when you switch it on again. Set it to 22 degrees or whatever you prefer and it will simply remove the moisture in the air inside the car so this will demist the windscreen very quickly, for instance. AND the aircon system needs to be serviced every few years, they change the gas and the oil as well as the cabin filter so you keep the car smelling sweet.

GOOD LUCK with the warrany dodging Arnold Clark!!!
 
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