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Honda CR-V AC Compressor Problems



  • piglet22piglet22 Posts: 2
    What anomalies would one be looking for? From all the posts I've read the only warning (if any!) that people seem to get is 30 seconds of rattling under the hood followed by a popping noise. In a good number of the cases I've read about, the cold air just stop flowing.
    What I meant by preventive maintenance in my original question was something specific to the AC itself - not simply the scheduled routine maintenance for the car. I have to try and dig it up now again but I had found a post earlier somewhere on the net from an individual that claimed the problem could be avoided by having the system flushed and installing a filter of some sort in the line that could be changed/cleaned regularly. The theory was that something in the line is clogging causing excessive pressure to build resulting in the compressor blowing up. I'm not sure how that affects the issue of the cases where the clutch seizes. I'm still wondering if an aftermarket 3rd party replacement unit would eliminate these design flaws.
    Thanks for the info.
  • (my original post #722)
    Well, Honda America didn't call back within 1 day (as promised), so I called them on Jun 24th (original failure on the 7th, local dealer worked on car on the 18-19th). They said they left a voice mail (I didn't get it), but they did say that they worked out with the dealer that they would pay for 1/2 of parts (total was $822), and reduce the labor to the 'warranty' billing rate. They advised me to call and confirm with the local service manager, but I didn't get around to it for a few days, and he finally called and confirmed what my HA case manager told me. I have yet to get my refund check, but it hasn't been a week since we spoke. So I'm hoping to get out of this situation with an outlay of around $500 to 600.
    The funny thing was that when the dealer fixed the car, they told me the best they could do was a 10% (off labor & parts), and the next day in the mail I got one of the dealer's mailings that offers special pricing on oil change and 10% off of servicing. So the 10% they offered was nothing at all...
  • kisseypookisseypoo Posts: 29
    See my previous Posts #668, 670 and 679, They will give you some insight as to how to approach Honda America...and with a positive outcome. Good luck and keep us posted! KP
  • momac2499momac2499 Posts: 10
    This is my 5th Honda and after the experience with the Honda CRV and the way the people spoke to me at Honda of America this will be my LAST. I have a 2002 Honda CRV and my compressor has gone out 4 times since I bought the car 2003, 2004, 2006 and now 2008. Like everyone else I'm sure you feel that you shouldn't have to pay for something that honda knows they have a problem with. This past time that the compressor went Honda told me that "At some point the customers got to be responsible for paying for the fix". I explained to them that if it was fixed right the 1,2,and 3rd time that I really dont think the customer should have to pay AT ALL. After fighting and yelling they decided that they would pay for 1/2 the part and I would be responsible for the other 1/2 plus labor. I asked what my cost would be and they told me $956.00 I'd like to know where the big break is. This is a problem and they are well aware of the problem and it should have been recalled. To me fixing something doesn't mean that it keeps breaking it means that it was temporarily fixed. Right now I am in the process of retaining a lawyer because I don't feel Honda is right. I paid for alot of money for this HONDA and I feel that honda should stand by there vehicles and by there name especially if they want people to return. It's not like I bought an american car (which at this point they'd probably take care of their customers better just to keep them) I bought a HONDA. Thanks for listening to me complain. I'm just a little pissed at them!!!
  • kisseypookisseypoo Posts: 29
    Interesting how the a/c fails almost every two years. Maybe that's why Honda only guarantees the replacements for 1 yr/10-12K miles!!! The original,if I'm not mistaken, was guaranteed for 3 yrs./36K miles.

    None of this info solves anyone's a/c problems, but it might be a good question to pose to Honda America!
  • killorhomekillorhome Posts: 13
    On advice of this forum I called corporate & told them I want to complain & told them to make a case # for me. When i told her that-- A case worker was assigned to me. Of course i had to call him to follow-up after 5 days, & just by his demeaner i knew my claim wasn't fufilled. I admit i didn't argue as strong as should (didn't want to lose 75% i had!) & guy seemed peeved by my knowledge of TSBs/this site & other A/C problems. I told him i think honda is hiding known problems & i'm being bought off! --The local dealer will just fix it, they may pay some (usually parts w/ you paying labor) & with honda corporate, you hope they pay the rest. At the very least your getting you name on a complaint list if there is ever a recall!! Good luck!
  • bedilbedil Posts: 11
    I called Honda America first but was redirected to my dealership. I spoke to the manager of the service department who was very nice and helpful. Per his instructions I took the car in and the estimate was for the cost of a diagnosis. The service tech said that it was proceeedure but that they would contact Honda America to cover the charge, which they did as well as covering the cost of the air conditioner. I had under 44,000 miles on my 2003 CRV. Good luck! :)
  • killorhomekillorhome Posts: 13
    You say your retaining a lawyer?? God i'd love to hear how that works out! I'd love to but i simply can't afford the cost if i come up short. I praying for ya.
  • killorhomekillorhome Posts: 13
    As for A/C anomolies to look for besides noises, On other vehicles & other stories I've heard of course; air stop working, intermittent hot/cold operation, unexplained leak spots on garage floor, road damage to parts, belt tension, flushing system periodically(what interval is usually a guess). As for oil servicing for bearings i just don't know the specifics. I suppose last but definately not least is a forum like this to stay in tune w/ the issue & hope for a recall.
  • kisseypookisseypoo Posts: 29
    I doubt there will be a recall because Honda does not view this a/c failure as a "safety issue." It's probably cheaper for them to deal individually with the relatively small number of us who eventually call Honda America looking for reimbursement than dealing with the expense of a recall.

    Stay cool.....KP
  • genhogenho Posts: 7
    Not a 'safety issue'? Bits and pieces of metal bouncing around on the road not a 'safety issue'? Being forced to drive around with your windows down on a hot day in an area crawling with carjackers not a 'safety issue'? I deliberately seek out vehicles with air conditioning because I have difficulty breathing when it is hot and humid. Honda took my money knowing FULL WELL their A/C system was defective?
  • kisseypookisseypoo Posts: 29
    I agree with you that not having a/c is a "safety issue" for lots of us....older folks, folks with heart and asthmatic conditions, those with certain allergies. Just riding around in 90+ weather + humidity can be life-threatening to some. But Honda probably doesn't view it that way....because they haven't had to (i.e., no lawsuit nor pressure from gov't agency obliging them to do so).

    Your point about carjackers is also well taken, too.

    Any suggestions as to how to affect a recall????
  • genhogenho Posts: 7 someone has to die first? Wouldn't it be nice to take responsiblity first before someone is hurt or killed? As for a recall..? I'm not sure how that works.
  • We live in Ontario, Canada. My wife drives this CR-V. It logged appr. 150K kilometers or about 85,000 miles. My wife is the type who don't like cold air blowing at her, so she uses the AC minimally; plus we have cold winters here, so it really is used only during May to Oct for about 6 months in a year. Two days ago, it starts blowing warm air, and then she heard the clunking sound.

    We have CAA to tow it back to the Honda dealership where we have been doing all services according to the book. They told us the compressor was damaged inside, and recommends us to replace the clutch and coil set at the same time. They also found out there is a leakage in the condenser, To replace all of them, parts and labor, the bill added up to $2995+tax!! I ask the dealer if there is manufacturing warranty left, whatever Honda can do to help, the answer is NO.

    This morning, I searched the internet and I found you guys. I called Honda Canada Customer Relations, the call agent insisted there is nothing Honda can/will do to help with my situation. He said the vehicle has past it's 3 years/60,000 Km warranty. Any Canadian CR-V owners had similar experience?
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    In order to bring visibility to this issue, everyone who has had a compressor failure should complain to the NHTSA. If they get enough complaints they may open an investigation. This is what happened with the engine fires in CR-V a few years ago.

    NHTSA Consumer Complaint form
  • genhogenho Posts: 7
    There is an 'Office of Defects Investigation' listed as part of the NHTSA...perhaps they are the ones that handle this type of situation.
  • killorhomekillorhome Posts: 13
    Good point. I called & made a complaint to the NHTSA just the other day. The number i used was 1-888-327-4236. Ironically i got the number off a TSB i downloaded off the honda service express site. Squeaky wheel gets the grease!!
  • richk6richk6 Posts: 87
    so she uses the AC minimally; plus we have cold winters here, so it really is used only during May to Oct for about 6 months in a year.

    Your AC is also running during winter because is on by default everytime a defroster mode is used.
  • Mine is a 2000 CRV. It's old, but I love it and don't want to let it go. But after reading all the posts about reoccurring AC issues and being how I live in Phoenix, AZ, I am thinking that the $1600 I need to pay for a new system might not be worth my old car.

    So I am wondering if it's worth it to put all this money down for a compressor, belt, receiver, expansion valve, flush and freon, or will I be paying for all this again sometime too soon?

    I bought the car used so I am not sure if the ac was replaced before, but I don't think so, so the fact that it lasted this long is reassuring.

    Also, my guy friend is saying that he doesn't believe this whole metal contaminate story and is telling me I am being taken. But if I am not the only one having this issue, I have a hard time believing it is such a big conspiracy. Has anyone ever checked the parts for the contaminates? Or is this all just taking the word of the dealer?
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    Most of the problem compressors were on the Gen 2 CR-V, with a couple of failures on VERY late model 2001 Gen 1. Yours would be the first I remember for the 2000 model year.

    It is most likely NOT the same issue; A/C compressors do die occasionally on all vehicles. If the car is mechanically sound, replacing the A/C is a viable option, IMHO.
  • fbitobefbitobe Posts: 2
    I have a 2004 CRV. It has just over 81k miles. Last week, I had just entered the freeway in the mid-afternoon when I heard what sounded like a loud rumbling for about 5 seconds. This was immediately followed by a white smoke coming out of the right side of my hood for about 2 seconds. Then the air from the AC became really warm. :mad:

    I pulled over at the nearest gas station and checked under the hood but couldn't find anything. I took the vehicle to my uncle's shop. He has over 30 years of experience and owns/operates a large engine/transmission/AC/brake shop.

    He couldn't see anything out of the ordinary at first. He suspected the high pressure line might have ruptured. He injected dye into the system and found all of the dye was coming from the compressor. The compressor had actually ruptured. He said that in all of his years in the business, he had never seen a compressor blow up. He has seen cracks, but nothing like this. His entire crew came over to take a look because they could not believe it either.

    I haven't contacted Honda yet. My uncle is going to try his contact at the dealership he usually deals with. I'm going to try the same with the service manager at my dealer. I've always had all of my maintenance done at the dealer and taken good care of my car. This is my 4th Honda and my 2nd CRV.

    The worst part about all of this is that 2 hours before all of this occurred, I had contacted American Honda Finance to extend my lease. If I cannot get the results I want from the dealer or American Honda, then I think I'll pitch my case to American Honda Finance as a condition of renewing my lease.
  • aedlaedl Posts: 4
    Thanks for all of your posts! We are facing our 2nd A/C compressor on our 2002 CRV. The first one was replaced in 2005 and was covered with the extended warranty. That was has blown, too. My dealer says because of the miles on my car (141K), Honda America will only cover 25% of the $2300 repair bill. I am fighting this because this A/C does not truely have 141K miles since it was replaced already AND because of info from this forum. Have submitted a complaint to NHTSA. Wish me luck!
  • momac2499momac2499 Posts: 10
    let me know how that goes, Honda of America has a bunch of worthless people working for them. They offered me the same dealer and this was my 4th time replacing it.
  • momac2499momac2499 Posts: 10
    Explain to me then, why I have a 2002 Honda CRV and the first and 2nd time mine blew honda said that it was a bad part but that they replace them with the newer models and then 39k miles later it blew for the 3rd time and they replaced it and now 39k miles again it blew again. I know air conditioners break but not every 40k miles. IT IS the same issue EVERY single time as per HONDA.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    "Explain to me then, why I have a 2002 Honda CRV and the first and 2nd time mine blew honda said that it was a bad part but that they replace them with the newer models and then 39k miles later it blew for the 3rd time and they replaced it and now 39k miles again it blew again. I know air conditioners break but not every 40k miles. IT IS the same issue EVERY single time as per HONDA. "

    Your model is a GEN 2, and my post referred to GEN 1.

    Did you read the post to which I was replying?

    I think one failure at 120K miles is probably not indicative of a bad compressor, which is what happened to the person writing the post, and to whom I was writing.

    I said that there have been very few problems with the GEN 1 CR-V. The original post had had a failed compressor on his 2000 CR-V. While there have been a couple of VERY late GEN 1 model compressor failures (including my father-in-law's 2001 Gen 1), there has not been a large number reported. Therefore my opinion was that it was OK to get his compressor repaired.

    You have a GEN 2, which had some defective compressors.
  • sonny2008sonny2008 Posts: 4
    I have bought a honda 2001 cr-v a week ago from Mears Mazda & Volvo in Lubbock, TX. The car was looking OK, they told me that I will need $200 to repair its wheel alignment and rotors. Well, it took $400 2 days ago..

    And today, while running errands in a hot texas day, the A/C started to make noises, and blow warmer air. I began to use it sparingly, yet checking it from time to time. Then, at one point I turned it on, and "boom!", someting exploded in the engine compartment. I immediately pulled over, and saw large pieces of metal under the hood, with greenish liquid all over. I soon dicovered that HALF of the Compressor was gone! I am suspecting that it damaged some other parts, since that green liquid looked and smelled like coolant.. What else could this be?

    I called the dealer, and they tried to hide behind "AS IS" document they had made me sign. I have not even received a new title and plates, so was hoping that being this new, the dealer may still help me. Would they? Is there any state or federal law you know of that may cover me in this situation?

    I will call Honda, but this car is 2001 and has 102K miles on it, so I am not very optimistic.. Any additional advise will be appreciated. Thanks.
  • fbitobefbitobe Posts: 2
    So I called American Honda. The guy that I spoke with was not helpful at all. He heard me out, but insisted that there is no known issue with the Gen 2 CRV compressor. He also said that they would not offer any goodwill warranty. No matter what I said, he was trying to get me off the phone. I asked him for a case number 5 times to no avail. He would not give me his extension. He would only give me his first name. He mentioned at one point that he was noting my concerns, so I threw the ball back at him and said, "So if have been documenting this, then there must be some report or case number associated with it. I want that number." After some awkward silence, there was a sigh and then he gave me a case number.

    I called the service manager at the dealership. He was very helpful and understanding. He said to bring it in for a free inspection. I mentioned about the numerous issues listed here. He agreed that there may be something wrong, but that sometimes the message boards get a little carried away. He said that his service team needs to see how bad it is, then they would plead my case to American Honda based on my loyalty to the brand, dealership, service center, etc. From our conversation, my faith was restored in Honda (for now). I'll update after my appointment.
  • 2004 CRV Hondas are having problems with the AC system. I own one myself and a little over a year and a half ago the AC system had to be completely replaced. Honda paid for the parts and the labor (around $4,000). Now a year and a half later the same thing happens. Honda only paid for the parts arguing that they have only paid for it out of "good faith". This is not true. The dealership told me that they are seeing the 2004 CRVs coming in with the same problem on a regular basis, so did my local mechanic (non-dealer). You all need to write to Honda and complain and demand to be reimbursed for the cost. Write to:
    American Honda Motor Co., Inc.
    Honda Automobile Customer Service
    1919 Torrance Boulevard
    Mail Stop: 500 - 2N - 7D
    Torrance, CA 90501-2746
    Don't forget to include the VIN for reference
  • roccom67roccom67 Posts: 1
    Glad I found this site. Thanks for the help. Didn't know this was a wide-spread issue. I have a 2003 CR-V with about 121,000 miles. A/C seized up while my wife was driving last week. Loud whirring noise and then a loud pop! Luckily wasn't a safety issue but the A/C died. I took it in yesterday and they said the whole system had to be replaced for about $2,300! I almost agreed to it thinking I had no choice, but then balked. Can live a few weeks without it while I get other estimates. Luckily my wife found this blog before we fixed it. I will call Honda Corp and try to open a case. Worth a shot. Will let you know how it goes. It's unfortunate that the dealers aren't open with their customers. It's obviously a problem. The only reason we googled this problem online was because the sale person, upon my leaving, mentioned quietly that I should call Honda and ask about it to see what they could do. Obviously a common problem. Fortunately these blogs exist.
  • My ac just went on 7/5/08, so I figured that the ac just needed to be charged, since it was just working and stoped working while I was driving my car. Tood my car to a shop right by my employment, and they had told me that its my ac compresser and they dont handle this, so I had a personal friend mechanic look at this and he had said that same thing. SO I called honda and they had said that it would 1200.00 to start. I thought this was crazy. My CRV VIN starts with SHSR and I have been having all the problems that Ive read on this site, the condeser went, had no idea what the rubbing noise was on my car, to come and find out when I did research that the rear differental fluid just needs to be changed. This is my third honda, first CRV, I loved hondas till this point, I've had two CIVICS till now, and still have one, but this is crazy, I cant afford to keep spening all this money on things that honda knows that going on but just wont put a recall out on it!! I never had any problems with my civics. I just emailed My local honda dealer, but i doubt i will get any reponse. I want to get this taking care of but I cant afford to pay 1200.00 PLUS!!
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