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Honda CR-V AC Compressor Problems

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  • Just got ours fixed. We had 51k miles on a 2004. They initially quoted $3200. The dealer then talked to their Honda rep and they did a goodwill warranty for what they said was 50%, although we only paid $1265+tax. Still too much, in my opinion, but it's better than $3200.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,593
    Not too many car companies would have done anything on a six year old car.

    I just can't understand why these jobs are so damm expensive?

    Not that many years ago when some of the Civics didn't come with A/C, we would install a complete Honda unit for 1295.00 which included everything!
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    edited August 2010
    Every one of your posts suggests that you are still on Honda's payroll. Oh, you attempt to make them sound objective at times. Other times not at all. I could pull those ones up for other recent CRV owners to see for themselves if you would like?

    It is like you are on a crusade to pooh pooh people who are here looking for help, and yet statistically, victims are gaining in number every single day! Yet the regulars here can now count on you to pop in with your Honda-defending remarks like the one above "Not too many car companies would have done anything on a six year old car."
    Am I the only one here who feels these types of remarks by you is getting old long ago?

    How about these points below to consider?

    - a consumer has a reasonable presumed value and life-expectancy built into a product we use our hard earned money to purchase. Warranties are in place because history has found that some products fail prematurely due to any number of variables. Often because a bidder/supplier of a subbed out part, decides to alter quality content in that part, hedging that that will ultimately get away with it, or even by discovering a very honest defect in a mold that doesn't surface right away. A consumer out in the real world may not discover that their car has this same defective part in their car, but either because of their climate or (lack of) number of miles driven, the problem doesn't surface in time for it to make it obvious this is a design defect or part defect. And huge corporations being what they are, (trying to stay huge) they sometimes (usually) use less than straight-up means to defer customers who have legitimate claims. Stalling/stonewalling/....the infamous "Good Will" cr&p gestures and any other assorted practices that leave the customer out in pocket.

    - and because of this presumed value and life-expectancy there are patterns or statistics that SHOW a trend. And even though you incessantly keep maintaining your old dealer/employer insists there is no problem, it is all too painfully obvious that literally HUNDREDS of posters here do NOT agree with you!

    - whether you care to admit it or not (we know by now of course that you would attempt to call black- white if you say it enough times) there is a problem with certain A/C systems in certain cars and configurations. And as we are seeing, there are many that are not being caught under wty. Usually it is the time that expires before the miles. See? That in itself suggests that MILES of use is an important element in determining a legitimate claim even perhaps long after the time/wty expired. The point being, just because a customer drives less in any given period of time, does not make their car immune to a defective component! Read that over enough times till you get it please.

    Now....as we ALL KNOW the excuse you (isellhondas) are quick to load your typing hand with...it always goes something like... "You expect a "x" # of year old car to perform flawlessly indefinitely! That's ridiculous." But don't assume we are all stupid here. It is an insult to us! Many are here for answers/help. Not some Honda-paid poster to defend and try to call black white, with the conviction that if you say it enough times, maybe you can get a few more victims on board and influence them to quell their voice.

    But I do want to give you credit for at least one thing. By your own admission the first-price dealers are telling customers is almost 3 x's the cost of an A/C installed at the dealer level still in many cars today. A recent example I have first hand knowledge with is a base model of the Hyundai Accent. Dealer installed at around 1200 or 1300 bucks. And there is nothing overly uniquely different in principle in a manual A/C system other than design flaws (i.e. not enough air getting to a condenser causing it to run hot and therefore strain the compressor...as only one of many many examples) so costs should all be around that figure, and has been for 2 decades. Simple increased sales figures and manufacturing numbers have offset inflation, to hold that price of 1000 to 1500 bucks per unit.
    And on that same vein, this is another detail that sticks in my craw. When a dealer says, ok ok, out of Good Will (roll eyes) we will charge you half the usual price. Well DUH, just because they attempted to OVERCHARGE in the first place, does not leave me feeling like i been the recipient of much good will when i STILL had to pay for what the unit should have cost full on, in the FIRST place! Again...they treat us like we are stupid. The problem is though, too many fold like wet napkin. I commend those here who opt NOT to fold.

    But it is these DESIGN or COMPONENT FLAWS - that customers both in and out of wty are disputing here, and rightfully so whether you think so or not.
  • blueiedgodblueiedgod Posts: 2,803
    But I do want to give you credit for at least one thing. By your own admission the first-price dealers are telling customers is almost 3 x's the cost of an A/C installed at the dealer level still in many cars today. A recent example I have first hand knowledge with is a base model of the Hyundai Accent. Dealer installed at around 1200 or 1300 bucks. And there is nothing overly uniquely different in principle in a manual A/C system other than design flaws (i.e. not enough air getting to a condenser causing it to run hot and therefore strain the compressor...as only one of many many examples) so costs should all be around that figure, and has been for 2 decades. Simple increased sales figures and manufacturing numbers have offset inflation, to hold that price of 1000 to 1500 bucks per unit.
    And on that same vein, this is another detail that sticks in my craw. When a dealer says, ok ok, out of Good Will (roll eyes) we will charge you half the usual price. Well DUH, just because they attempted to OVERCHARGE in the first place, does not leave me feeling like i been the recipient of much good will when i STILL had to pay for what the unit should have cost full on, in the FIRST place! Again...they treat us like we are stupid. The problem is though, too many fold like wet napkin. I commend those here who opt NOT to fold.


    I think if you ever worked on the house, or a car would realize that it is much easier to do a fresh install than a retrofit. During a retrofit, or repair you always have to spend twice as much time removing the old components as it takes to install new.

    I don't know what you do a for a living, but imagine someone coming to you and stating that they think you chagre/get paid too much for what you do. How would you feel about it?
  • shima1shima1 Posts: 19
    "Am I the only one here who feels these types of remarks by you is getting old long ago?" No, you aren't. As I said a while ago, best to ignore all his posts.

    The fact that Honda replaces the flawed comp. with another flawed one, over and over again, is more than dishonest, it's immoral.
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    edited August 2010
    You are confusing issues. First of all, what would you be removing in order to install a dealer-installed kit A/C besides a few components that are in the identical area that you have to access anyway?
    In order to be environmentally conscious you would have to evacuate the system, but you work on someone else's car while that is going on.

    You could add (some time) for rusted fasteners on a used vs new car. And (some) time to pull the old stuff out of the way.

    But TWICE? You can justify twice the costs? See, don't give me that..

    I am a mechanic and a contractor and have built my own house and done renovations on others. I have also worked in sales, so I have and can see both sides of the coin here. I also have a conscience and the ability to determine right from wrong treatment of a person/customer. It is often as simple as that. It isn't rocket science. I have read posts in other threads on this site, and the attitude is often self-attempted-justification of how much can you extract out of the other person. And sales people seem to think that as long as they are in 'sales'....anything goes. Well...again...that's not true, not rocket science.

    And to keep us on track here, Honda knows full well what they have on their hands here with the CRV A/C systems. They have nickel counters who are weighing how little can this whole thing cost them, yet not risk losing a customer forever.

    As for your question:
    "I don't know what you do a for a living, but imagine someone coming to you and stating that they think you chagre/get paid too much for what you do. How would you feel about it?"

    In answering your question but keeping it within context with this thread/problem, I would expect the company, who I represent every day day in and day out, to back me in keeping OUR (reasonable) customers happy.
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    Yes that's true. I've been trying and have managed to ignore the last 10 or so, but today I caved.

    And I caved because it is my hope that new posters don't be made to feel like they are complaining over nothing or have their concerns pooh pooh'd. So my hope is that my post offsets his irrationale, and re-instills confidence in those who gently force their dealer to do the 'right thing'.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,593
    edited August 2010
    I deleted the first response to you and it's probably a good thing I did.

    First of all, I don't need you to teach me about how a car runs. I've been in the automotive industry all of my life and I once ran a large shop.

    I heve been around these forums since they started and I have watched minor grass fires rage into infernos as more and more people with problems flock to the "problems" forums. Some are real and others have been blown way out of proportion. A lot of people have neen needlessly frightened into thinking they better not take their car on vacation lest some component such as an A/C pump could suddenly fail.

    I'm not sure just how many miles or how many years you think an A/C compressor should last but given enough time, sooner or later, they will fail providing the car itself has a very long life.

    Life isn't even and some people will have much better luck than others.

    I am no longer am involved with Honda...I really don't care!

    I only passed on the info that I got from several key people at the store where I worked and that is (and still is) that they have not experienced this on CRV's any more so than on any other model Honda and that A/C pump failures aren't very common.

    Now, having said that, I do feel for the people who have been hit with these huge repair bills. My wife drives a CRV and it's seven years old with 50,000 miles.

    I still don't think that it's a DESIGN or COMPONENT flaw whe something breaks that is many thousands of miles or many years beyond it's warranty.
  • old_redold_red Posts: 6
    I have 105,000 on my 2003 CR-V. After writing to Honda and speaking to the district rep, I got nothing from Honda for the repair. Honda dealers in town wanted $3800 to replace the system. I drove 2 hours to a dealer I bought a Civic from in 1997. Their estimate was $2800 and they gave me 10% off that. I had the entire system replaced. I told the Honda rep that they had a customer for life. After this, they don't.

    As for the notion from isellhondas that parts fail, get over it, I'll list some other vehicles I've owned that didn't have the A/C compressor crap out at 105,000 miles and was still working when I sold the vehicle: 1984 Ford Mustang, 168,000 miles; 1985 Honda Prelude, 225,000 miles; 1993 Ford Ranger, 135,000 miles; 2000 Ford Ranger, 127,000 miles; 1992 Ford F-150, 136,000 miles; 1991 Jeep Wrangler, 141,000 miles. My 1997 Honda Civic compressor failed this summer at 275,000 miles.

    It appears that A/C systems are one of the more durable components in a vehicle, except for the 2002-2004 CR-Vs. Why did Honda write up that TSB and put together part-specific repair kits if this was all just a normal failure rate?
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,110
    We have removed a number of posting where the discussion turned personal (you know who you are) and distractive. We insist that the discussion remain civil and respectful and will remove any further discourse that is incompatible with our terms of use.

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • murphydogmurphydog Posts: 491
    um...Isell...you are only playing with fire here - come on back to the frontlines forums.

    :shades:
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,593
    Yeah, and I knew better when I jumped in.
  • zgreat1zgreat1 Posts: 11
    edited August 2010
    Thank you. It is stressful and vexing enough for those of us to have to deal with an a/c system that American Honda (AH) knows is a poorly-designed and "bordering" defective system :lemon: and yet we as loyal customers (at least before we had to deal with this a/c issue) mostly get the short end of the stick :mad: from AH. Those of us who have to work for a living to support our young ones and elderly would all want AH to own up to protect the well-being of our loved ones and ours :sick: to suffer the driving/riding without a/c in 100+F heat (105+F heat indices) AND to not continually get personal and disrespectful "insults to injuries" from those whose agendas are blatantly OBVIOUS!

    Thanks again, tidester, for intervening!!
  • Hmm-well my daughter and son in laws 2003 CR-V just blew the compressor according to the dealer and my son in laws father had the same exact problem, same year car and their best friends ALSO has the same exact thing happen. Way too many occurrences to be a coincidence but the dealer today quoted $3400 to do the whole replacement!!!--WOW---the gave us the name of someone in Headquarters to contact and they are relaying it to the District person so we are waiting to see what they offer for help as they say. She has 106K on the car. also, they were suppossed to fix the tumbler on the lock today and instead they replaced the actuator solenoid and window channel which there was nothing wrong with it so they fixed the lock fianlly-no one seems to listen to what they are told to do. The service agent didi write down it was the lock cyclinder itself and goods thign we checked it BEFORE we left the dealer. ARGHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!
  • well that is great they stepped up and helped out wiht an obvious problem. I know of three people right now wiht 2003's that have the same exact problem happen to them-the compressor blew on ALL of them. Too much of a coincidence to be just luck from the same year and not bought at the same location either. All parts from the same factory i would bele :lemon: ive. oh well-
  • belacquabelacqua Posts: 15
    '02 CR-V Ex--88,000 miles, well-maintained, AC went out early July, picked up my car yesterday--I originally took my car to a dealer in Knoxville, TN, where I live. I don't believe they did anything more than eyeball it, if that. Took them a week to get back to me and said it was the whole system (@ $3,000) and no good-will warranty.

    I drove to a dealership in Marietta, GA, (where I bought an Element EX), and left my car with them. The service rep, before the day was over, called and said it might just be a damaged condenser (and showed me the damage). Furthermore, he said that with luck maybe all I needed was a new condenser and freon, but he wouldn't know for sure until they fixed that.

    The next day he called with the news that it was more than the condenser, but not the whole AC system--the compressor was blown, and the car would need a new compressor, clutch, coil. (This dealer also was not going to extend a good-will warranty). At this point I had the option to pay for the compressor and freon and take my car somewhere else to complete the work. I left it, of course, because I was tired of the whole ordeal and by this time just wanted it done.

    Here are the charges:
    134 Freon--$35.80
    Condenser--$390.69
    Clutch SE--$229.80
    Coil Set--$96.36
    Compressor--$547.28
    Belt.ACG--$54.48
    Labor--$650
    TOTAL= $2004.41

    What have I learned?

    1.) I was told that dealers are allotted so many dollars per month for good-will warranties; therefore, although the dealers act as if you are being turned down by AH, it indeed begins there at the dealership. That's why, if you are NOT loyal to their service department (where most of their money is made), they shrug you off. And it has nothing to do with purchasing a car, only service.

    2.) The purpose of the SB describing the problem and fix with the A, B, or C kit makes it easier for many dealer's just to say (without really looking at your particular situation), "you need the C kit"--which is the whole system-- again without really accessing your problem--and that is the $3,000+ job. Don't accept an overall assessment; make the dealer break it down by components.

    3.) Knowing what I know now, I would take my car to an independent auto repair shop that fixes A/Cs, never dealing with Honda and the resulting grief and despair I incurred. I added my name to the class action suit, but I don't expect anything to become of that--certainly not any compensatory dollars.

    4.) Lastly, I'm not going to cut off my nose to spite my face. I bought a new Element EX and will sell the CR-V. I believe that Toyota will have to improve their warranties considering their bad press (like Audi first, then BMW and Porche.) and Honda will have to follow suit...eventually.

    OK, overall, I think Honda's business practices suck. I think car dealerships in general suck. I hope everyone else dealing with this problem has better outcomes than mine.
  • I have a Honda CR-V 1999. I just replaced the Compressor with a rebuilt compressor and dryer. It worked fine the first two days and then it started fluctuating in temperature between 100° and 84° as I drive it down the road. It will fluctuate to 84° when its standing still and when Im going 65mph down the road. It will also go to 100° under the same conditions. I did not replace the expansion valve. We do see the clutch engaging and it looks like it is working properly when we have it sitting still and it will not disengage when we start it up. It's only after we start going down the road. Do you think replacing the expansion valve might solve the problem?
  • I went back to the dealer that I purchased the vehicle from to have them give me their assessment of the damages/costs. They did quote $2400--which was several hundred dollars cheaper. Plus, I asked the service advisor for a goodwill repair based on what I have read here and on other sites. He did acknowledge that there were problems with compressor since 2002. I was told that if they do agree to help me out, they will sell me the parts at cost, plus cover 25% of the bill. My family and I have purchased 4 Hondas and serviced them at this location over the last 15 years. Thanks to everyone for sharing information and experiences. We'll see what happens. I should get an answer on Monday.
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    Is it icing up? If so, try to confirm you have the correct qty of freon. Too much will cause as many malfunctions in operation as too little. It doesn't have to be exact, but see that it is within the range of grams as stated in your OM.

    You did a very thorough evacuation right? If your compressor grenaded, then usually comp, condenser and drier are affected. Did you confirm no shrapnel went up the lines to the evaporator?
  • alana50alana50 Posts: 12
    Three times my 2000 CRV was in the shop in the last two years to have the condenser replaced. The vehicle was 8 years old (128K miles) the first time it broke and I realized the first time that things break after awhile, but not three times in the two subsequent years.
    When the AC began clunking on Monday I knew what to expect. This time instead of taking the vehicle to my local mechanic, I went to the dealership. They diagnosed (for only $60 instead of the normal $125) that the car had a bad case of the Black Death, and quoted just over $4K to repair the entire system. They asked American Honda for assistance but because the car is so old, Honda America understandably would not give me any assistance. However the local shop got the price down to $3147. (The parts alone came to $2065). The local shop, according to their invoice had replaced the parts (compressor, clutch, condenser, and freon each time and belts once); the dealership did the same plus replaced numerous pipes and hoses. The dealership mechanic told me that there shards probably from the first time the condenser went out; he said they get caught in the pipes and hoses then recycle through to damage the replacement parts. So each time after the first 'fix' that the AC had problems, and it appears that the shards had broken loose from the old pipes and hoses and recontaminated the system. Though the small shop told me about the black death, they did not replace all the hoses and pipes, or at least did not put it on the invoice, and charged me about half what the dealership charged. They also used after market parts, which I assume are probably fine normally if the shards were not in the closed system.
    So, now the car's been fixed at the dealership. I have piece of mind that the problem is fixed and I will drive the Texas summers comfortably for the next 171K miles. What I have learned from this is that there are some things one MUST go to the dealership for.
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