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Honda CR-V AC Compressor Problems

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  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 40,555
    I do wonder why some dealers are giving partial compensations to some and full warranties to others?

    I've always heard that the manufacturers don't reimburse warranty work at the same rate as retail work. So if the customer pays for the work (or some of the work), that's more money for the dealer. If the customer pays for the whole thing, that's one less warranty claim to submit, maybe less paperwork and maybe fewer dealer warranty claims that the manufacturer may reject in an audit. Maybe a Honda tech can comment?

    Toyota is still living down their engine gel problem and lots of owners weren't happy about how they handled the issue (Toyota Engine Sludge).

    Moderator
    Need help navigating? stever@edmunds.com - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

  • You are NOT the first older one to have the problem either. I have read every single post since the beginning, and have seen many different years, although the majority are around '02-'04. Mine (also an '01) went out sometime last year (maybe November?maybe before)and I am still driving it around without anything (Texas, where it was in the 80's outside in December and way hotter than that since then; and it only takes 30 mins to get to 120 inside when the temp out is in the 80s, not to mention the difficulties from the inability to de-fog when it rains,...).
    I have been extremely polite, nice, and everything else I could think of in all my dealings will Honda (HA phone, snail mail letters, fax, and dealer); but I simply could not and still cannot afford to pay for anything (not even the estimate. I am a single mom who's been unemployed waaaay too long).
    After following every post= The decision on whether to pay and how much simply has Nothing To Do With Anything! Not the year, not your loyalty or disloyalty, not your mileage, not your dealer, not your manners, not your maintenance records or lack thereof, not your gender, not the amount of your estimate (total system damage/partial damage), not whether you ever had a warranty at any time, nor whether you are the original owner. Not ANYTHING! It's random. May God go with us, that's all we can hope for.
  • My husband and I are going through this ordeal with Honda following the blow out of our 2003 CR-V's compressor. Same type of stuff that is being said in every page of this forum. We bought it in May, two days before our daughter was born, we live in Florida, it went out in early August and we were quoted $3200 from our local Honda dealership, Honda of Ocala, and were told that if we had bought our Honda at the dealership we could have had it fixed at no charge to us, but since we didn't, the best they could offer is 60%. We contacted Honda America and were cheerfully offered 50% which is still about $1000 more than we can afford so we are driving our newborn baby around in Florida with no A/C in a car we've had just over four months. It had about 56,000 miles when the compressor blew. We cannot afford this. The regional rep from Honda that my husband has been speaking with said that loyalty is the determining factor in who gets how much covered. My thinking is treat the customers you have well and they will be customers for life. We may never buy another Honda after have this type of major problem in a vehicle with such low mileage, and them knowing about it and compensating for it in such an arbitrary manner.

    I'm going to be looking into a class action lawsuit, based on the information in this forum and in another thread I have found.
  • My 2003 Honda CR-V's A/C compressor also blew out a couple of weeks ago. Thanks to all the information on the Net, I went to my dealership with the diagnosis and information in hand.

    I have the 100,000 mile extended warranty (VSC) and it covered everything. I didn't have to pay anything and I got my vehicle back within a couple of days.

    My service dealer is Walnut Creek Honda in California and they did a great job. No hassle at all.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,794
    "I have read every single post since the beginning, and have seen many different years, although the majority are around '02-'04."

    I have also read every post. OK, so now I have seen two Gen 1s, although I didn't see your earlier post (or don't remember it).

    I think my point is still valid, this appears to be an issue with some of the A/C compressors shipped with Gen 2 CR-Vs from 2002-2004. Gen 1s failures are rare, and we must remember that any A/C compressor can fail and not necessarily be part of a larger problem with all A/C compressors.

    That is what I meant by my comments.
  • I have a '99 CR-V with almost 160,000 miles on it...after it's been running a while, when it sits at idle, the A/C makes a "clunking" sound. If you speed up the engine? the noise stops.

    The A/C belt has been tightened and it made a bit of a difference, but only for a short time. The air is cold enough...so any ideas as to why the noise? Thanks.
  • Honda has made good on my AC compressor. I'll stick with Honda for my next purchase.
  • I strongly feel to bring notice of the vehicle failure and seriousness of the matter to all Honda CRV user as the failure had LIFE RISK at stake.

    My vehicle moving at 40 km/hr suddenly came to a complete halt with full loss of all controls on the power steering and brake system.(refer my earlier posting in the same forum in Nov.2006)
    Once AC Compressor fails I could understand the problem is to do with the air-conditioning system which is loading the engine and instead of any safety circuit breaker getting engaged which should cut power to the A/C system the whole engine would get stalled in fraction’s of second.

    Imagine the seriousness of this incidence and possible life risk if such a failure happens at very high speed on a highway..In light of this major incidence I suggest a complete "FMEA" analysis be conducted on the vehicle by Honda and a report be submitted to to all users assuring no such incidence can ever re-occur in this vehicle or for that matter any other vehicle of Honda
    I have been proud owner of HONDA as a BRAND and this incidence has shaken me totally when I recall the experience.
    Honda new about such failure in the past & was required to recall all the CRV units to set right such chance of failure AS THIS RELATES TO BASIC SAFETY DESIGN FAILURE AND COULD BE A MATTER OF LIFE AND DEATH OF A HONDA USER.

    VISIT google search"CRV compressor failure "and see hundreds of similar failure.Also google search "Honda recall" and know how many failures in Honda vehicle.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,794
    "My vehicle moving at 40 km/hr suddenly came to a complete halt with full loss of all controls on the power steering and brake system.(refer my earlier posting in the same forum in Nov.2006)"

    I don't understand your post. Are you saying that the A/C compressor failed on your CR-V and that caused the vehicle to stall? This is the first I've heard of such an occurrance. Most reports simply indicate the A/C blows hot air.

    Not to disagree, but did you also do a Google on other cars and problems? Honda has sold a LOT of CR-Vs, and it is at least evident that not every one has a failed compressor.
  • I have a 2001 CRV with 84,000 miles/NO warranty. The air compressor blew out. The day prior, there was a rattling, like a piece of plastic stuck in the air duct, coming from behind the glove compartment. The next day, which was 105 degrees, it sounded like a bag of bolts stuck in a garbage disposal.
    I immediately Googled CRV air compressor and found this forum. The next day I took it in to my local honda dealership for a checkup. At first, the service manager said he couldn't do anything. Then I told him I did my research on this forum. Still nothing because he said that it was the 02-04 models that they were replacing, but not the '01.
    As it turns out, my crv was purchased in late '01 about a month before the '02s came out. The compressor on the '02 that has failed so often could have been used on my car. That was my defense when I called American Honda.
    The next day the service manager called back and said American Honda would cover 50%. The dealership and American Honda are two separate businesses, so the dealership will not make a deal with you like AH will.
    So end of story, the new AC system cost me around $700.
  • We may be interested in a class action suit also, because Honda didn't give us a satisfactory answer either - offered half. Said the decision was based on owner loyalty to Honda. So instead of letting my husband do the maintenance, brakes, oil, hoses, etc. which he is entirely capable of, I am supposed to take it to my local dealership so they can charge me $475, $380 of which is labor. So that they then can still "choose" whether or not to fix an issue of faulty manufacturing on their part. Corporate america as we know it.
  • Not to disagree, but did you also do a Google on other cars and problems? Honda has sold a LOT of CR-Vs, and it is at least evident that not every one has a failed compressor.

    I know this is true, but when there are this many issues out there with the same models and years of a car, a responsible manufacturer would issue a recall or would cover all of the complaints, not just pick and choose.
  • blueiedgodblueiedgod Posts: 2,797
    I strongly feel to bring notice of the vehicle failure and seriousness of the matter to all Honda CRV user as the failure had LIFE RISK at stake.

    My vehicle moving at 40 km/hr suddenly came to a complete halt with full loss of all controls on the power steering and brake system.(refer my earlier posting in the same forum in Nov.2006)
    Once AC Compressor fails I could understand the problem is to do with the air-conditioning system which is loading the engine and instead of any safety circuit breaker getting engaged which should cut power to the A/C system the whole engine would get stalled in fraction’s of second.


    Unless you drive stick, stalling the engine will not stop the vehicle. Also, stalling the engine does not cut off your ability to steer or brake, unless you suffer from muscular distrophy.

    Even if you drive stick and the engine stalls, you don't stop as if you hit a cement wall, you just slow down, and by that time you should release the clutch and shift into neutral anyway.

    How did people steer and brake before power steering and power brakes were invented? Sheesh.
  • Remember that you have a legal obligation to mitigate your damages. Honda can't be held responsible for the well-being of your child.
  • I bought a used 2003 CRV with about 46,000 miles on it. I was driving up to New Jersey from North Carolina and while in New Jersey, my car made a funny ratteling sound, stuttered a little and then completely died on me (engine, power steering, electricity, everything). When I turned the engine back on, the ac was not blowing out cold air. A few weeks later I took it to the Honda dealership in North Carolina. They took a look at it and told me my compressor was shot and that metal shards had been thrown around the system. They appealed to American Honda to have it fixed under warrantee and it was. I got a new compressor, new hoses, basically a brand new system all fixed for free. Excellent work on Honda to recognize the problem and then do something about it for people. Now my ac runs like a champ.
  • Does the cost of fixing the AC count as mitigating my damages?
  • I am in Norman OK also. I took my daughter's '02 CRV to a private mechanic who verified the blown compressor. I decided to Google the problem, and found this forum. Unbelievable. I have an appt with Fowler Honda this afternoon, but after extensively reading this forum, I wonder if I should just go ahead and call HA first.
    How was your problem resolved? What is your recommendation?
  • Quick version - Honda was great and fixed blown compressor only charging me $250 instead of $1200 because I read the discussion group your reading now.

    Long version - Driving the 2004 CRV in Orange County, CA last week with the AC on and suddenly there's a whooshing noise for about 15 seconds, slight vibration, then the car runs normally but AC blows hot air. When I get home that night, I look under the hood down where the compressor lives and see oily residue sprayed over everything in the area.

    I was going to take it to my regular mechanic next day, but thought I'd check online for a recall notice or service campaign since 58000 miles seemed pretty young for a compressor failure. After I found this discussion thread, I did the following;

    1. Called my local Honda dealer, asked for service. I told the service writer I had a CRV I thought had a blown AC compressor, and asked if he had heard of any service campaign. I told him I had seen information indicating they had more than usual failures. He said he knew of no campaign, but advised if I wanted to try and get Honda to help out, I should get a case number, and he gave me the 800 number to call.

    2. Called the 800 number, explained my case to information input person who opened a case number and said my case manager would call in a day or two. She advised that I should go ahead and get the dealer to diagnose the failure so matters could proceed.

    3. Called back Honda dealer, got the same service writer and told him I had a case number and was bringing it in for diagnosis. Left it that night at the dealership.

    4. Next morning, Honda case manager calls and asks me questions before contacting dealer. He is curious as to why I opened a case number as the car is out of warranty, I bought it used from a private party, and I basically don't have a leg to stand on (my words not his). I just old him I had seen a thread on Edmunds that indicated that they might have a premature failure problem with AC compressors, I and my immediate family had owned 4 Hondas it the last decade, I just wondered if they could help me out with this. I was just as nice as I could be, because that's just the kind of guy I am.

    5. Later that day, my service writer at the dealer calls and says he found a blown compressor, talked with my case manager, and they are willing to pay for the $1200 repair except for a $250 deductible charge to me. I know a good deal when I hear it, so I thank him profusely and he tells me it should be done tomorrow.

    6. Next day I get the car back, AC works good and has been working fine for a week now.

    Summary: It would seem that this discussion group has saved me about $1K, and that Honda did step up and stand behind their product - even though I was not the original owner, didn't buy it new, and it was 22k miles past warranty. It did say "one time goodwill discount" on the receipt, so I suppose if this compressor goes out at 120K miles, I'm on my own, but 'till then I'm cool like the breeze.
  • I just went through this, but I am in NJ. It does seem to vary from case to case. However, in reading dozens of similar situations on this thread, and more importantly, going through it on my own, I can say that I think the best route to take is to contact HA first. To me, it immediately separates from you from the mokes who simply go into the dealership and follow the bouncing ball right to the 3000 dollar invoice. It implies that you did your homework, and are not going to go quietly. But you dont have to be a jerk about it either. Polite yet firm.
  • I also have a 2001 CRV. Mine has 88,000 miles and no warranty. My compressor let go one day when I started my car. Like soldoncrvs said it sounded like "a bag of bolts stuck in a garbage disposal". Horrible sound to say the least.
    Also like soldoncrvs's car, mine was one of the last built in 2001. So, I am hoping the my fix will also be at least partially covered by American Honda.
    I will post back with results.

    James
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,794
    "I know this is true, but when there are this many issues out there with the same models and years of a car, a responsible manufacturer would issue a recall or would cover all of the complaints, not just pick and choose."

    I have to agree with you there. I certainly wish I knew what criteria were being used by Honda to determine which cases to fund...
  • I took my 2002 CRV into the Honda dealer yesterday. It has 89,000 miles on it, no warranty. I explained to the service manager that I have owned 6 Hondas, but did not purchase them at his dealership (as I had lived out of state).
    He called Honda America and they are covering 2/3 the cost of the repair. The entire system was contaminated when the air compressor blew, and the total estimate for a complete new system came in @ $1700.00.
    Apparently, Honda "owner Loyalty" is a BIG part of the decision when Honda decides how much, if any, to pay.
    While I am thrilled that they are paying $1150.00, I feel sorry for new Honda owners as they may not get ANYTHING paid for.....maybe their attorney should call Honda America.
  • That's great, the amount of my complete system was $3,100 so when I paid half it was nearly the same as if you would have had to pay your entire amount. I'm seeing this huge price difference is quite common when I read these posts.
  • Yep, I am glad I bought the extended warranty with my '04 crv (the EX model). The first time the a/c blew it sounded like I ran over about 3 full garbage cans.... and the a/c quit. The dealer called it "BLACK DEATH." The compressor and hoses were replaced and price to the warranty company was $1300 (and I got a rental car for the day). It is now about 6 weeks LATER and the car sounded like 50,000 mice were in the engine and the a/c quit. At the dealers the next day, BLACK DEATH was again confirmed. The repair will be the ENTIRE unit at about $2000+ and a rental car -- cost to me $0. While this isn't costing me much except for time, I have now called American Honda to report the problem. While they don't admit to a problem, they are assisting many people with the repair of the a/c units. They reassured me by saying the new a/c units are re-designed. We'll see.

    This is my 4th Honda since 1972... and first problem. Yes the VIN # starts with a "J." AND the mileage is now less than 29,000. Problem seems more related to calendar age than miles. My Mom has a 2003 crv 2 wheel and I am waiting for her a/c to blow (LOOK OUT: might be any minute!)

    ALL: should you have this problem REPORT IT TO AMERICAN HONDA before you go to the dealer for repairs! Have the larger fix done if you can: My dealer said that pieces remained in the a/c system after the original repair causing the 2nd failure. AND keep your records in case it happens again.

    Now may we all have good luck with our new a/c units!
  • I have and 03' CRV-EX with 70k miles and my a/c compressor just went bad. I purchased the vehicle brand new and have done all of the scheduled maintenences.

    I just called Curry Honda and they said it will cost 2800.00 to fix the entire A/C unit.

    Just called Honda and open of a ticket. Will keep you guys posted.
  • Same issue. Compressor goes clunk. Take it to the dealer, first technician immediately tells me the whole a/c system is ruined and costs $3000 to replace, but they will contact American Honda and it can usually be fixed for $600. Same tech calls me back and says Honda will pay 50% and it will cost me $1200. I told them that wasn't good enough and he then has the service manager call me. Service Manager gets a little testy when I mention this and other websites and that they clearly have a defective part and he finally agrees to call his regional representative back. Another call from the service manager and he says they will pay 75% leaving me with a $700-$800 bill (yes, their percentages don't add up - 25% should mean a $600 bill). I ask for the case number so that I can contact American Honda myself and..."we didn't open a case." Followed with a very threatening tone of "If you contact American Honda we can retract our offer." I simply said "ok" and contacted American Honda myself to open a case. American Honda basically said they would not override the current offer and of course they would stand behind that offer (unless I sued which is interesting since I never once mentioned anything about legal action), and finally that I should take responsibility for not having an extended warranty. I asked if there were any guidelines as to who has to pay what since some posters don't have to pay anything, some pay 50%, some pay 25%, some pay an arbitrary amount. And am basically told it is an arbitrary decision as to who pays what and as for this and other forums "it's the internet, anybody can say anything."

    So, it looks like I'm stuck with the last offer. I'll update this with the final cost to me for this repair when I get the bill in a day or two. Good luck to the rest of you.
  • Monday 24 September 2007, I hear pop in the engine area and a swishing sound and the A/C runs hot.

    Tuesday I took it to the Honda dealer for them to look at it. The service person calls me and tells me he has bad news and good news, the bad news was the compressor was shot and shot medal into the system and it will cost $3,500.00 to fix and the good news was that since I am a loyal Honda customer the service manager got American Honda to pick up the cost of labor and all I have to pay is $554.54. I told him to fix it.

    I was curious on why they would do that so I Google it and found this site. I called American Honda and filed a claim , explained to them what happened and ask if they can pick up the $554.54, she told me someone will get back to me.

    On Wednesday Darrell from American Honda called me and I explained that the CRV was repaired and awaiting pickup and ask him if they could pick up the balance, he informed me to have the service manager call him before the final bill. He just wanted to make sure the dealer made all the phone calls on my behalf.

    My wife picked up the auto and ask the service manager to call American Honda he ask her why do I need to call Darrell from American Honda, she explained why. The service manage got nasty with her and told her that I agreed with the price and out of the goodness of his heart I am only charging him for the compressor.

    Darrell called me back and informed me that is all Honda is willing to do for me.

    They left my wife waiting a half hour before my wife ask what is going on his reply was everything was settled and I don't know why you are still here. She paid the fee and left with the CRV.

    On the invoice Honda states one time goodwill repair. I have a 2005 CRV so what happens when that compressor goes?

    All CRV owners should call American Honda before they take it to be repaired. If I had known before maybe I would have saved a few more dollars.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,794
    "On the invoice Honda states one time goodwill repair. I have a 2005 CRV so what happens when that compressor goes? "

    If you have less than 36K miles, you are still eligible for a HondaCare extended warranty. You might want to investigate getting one just for security.
  • Had the same problem as all the others with a 2002 CRV. Honda paid for the parts but not the labor. Escalated to Bernardi Honda dealership owner, dealership service manager and as we have seen in other cases the buck ends up at Honda America rep - in this case Matt.

    Matt can't "do anything further" for me and I asked how what appears to be an endemic problem with CRVs (and the only significant problem being discussed in the forums I have seen) can be escalated within Honda. He said that if "a lot of people" call American Honda about their problem then it might get enough attention for them to consider addressing it more broadly.

    So, call 1-800-999-1009 and ask that this problem be escalated within Honda corporate. Also suggest telling every Honda CRV owner you encounter about this issue.

    I told the various service managers that there were approx 100 new posts a month on this site about this problem and that was just the people who took the time/effort to post. Wonder what the real incidence level is of this problem? I also told them that this was THE problem being reported for CRV's - not a lot of noise on any other problems which made it even more amazing that it wasn't being addressed at the corporate level.

    Take a few minutes and call Honda America (1-800-999-1009)and make sure they know of your problem - if there is enough noise made then perhaps they will do the right thing someday. Those of us who have already had it might benefit and it would help those who will have it in the future.
  • After paying to have my A/C fixed ($2,200), I was told last week that my catalytic converter had also gone & it would be $1,700 to replace. Needless to say, I nearly blew up. I got rid of my CR-V PRONTO & have purchased another vehicle - absolutely NOT a Honda, and I will never own another. Good job, Honda - way to loose a loyal customer!!!
    :lemon:
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