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Honda CR-V AC Compressor Problems



  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    edited July 2010
    Seems a bit harsh.

    I fall into the pre A/C car ownership class quite handily thank you. But today we have more cars on the road, and cars themselves create extra heat in our vicinity. Furthermore we have more pavement lanes and that also creates more heat. And also, years ago we simply didn't commute as far as we do today. Many larger cities have more than quadrupled in distance from one outskirt line to the next! And because of that increase in size, we have more congestion which means more stopping and starting with no air flow through your 'open windows'.

    And there have been numerous studies that have proven beyond any doubt that drivers are more alert and less prone to road rage and just simply have more patience and better judgement behind the wheel when vehicles are equipped with a working A/C. That is why most transport company trucks all have A/C now compared to even 20 years ago.

    There have also been many tests involving aerodynamic wind drag with windows open vs closed once up to highway speed. In most tests, the car gets better economy with the windows up.

    And as for the specific issue of CRV compressors and entire A/C systems, I think that in some cases (this one especially) an acknowledged nationwide recall is in order. This would help address the mass unfairness in pricing for one thing. Some customers (the ones who negotiate better than certain others) pay 1500 bucks while others end up paying 3000! Like, come on..

    I do NOT agree that a good-will gesture of a dealership should hinge on how many bucks they have extracted from me in the past for 70 and 90 and even 110 ! dollar oil changes, when I can do my own quite handily for 20 doallrs AND not be in as big a rush to insert the drain plug so quickly, which by basic default, lets the vast majority of worse contaminates and microscopic metal shavings flow out of the engine for a more thorough re and re result. And with notably longer engine longevity for my troubles. That entire scenario notwithstanding, the A/C system they put in these CRV's are so painfully obviously faulty. And it does not take a rocket scientist degree to come to that conclusion.

    And finally, just because we managed to keep our meats and dairy on ice underneath sawdust many years ago, does not mean we should blindly resist using a 120 volt refrigerator/freezer today.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    "And as for the specific issue of CRV compressors and entire A/C systems, I think that in some cases (this one especially) an acknowledged nationwide recall is in order. This would help address the mass unfairness in pricing for one thing. Some customers (the ones who negotiate better than certain others) pay 1500 bucks while others end up paying 3000! Like, come on.. "

    The NTSB issues safety related recalls. I don't think they have any authority to issue a recall simply because a part fails, regardless of the cause, unless it directly relates to a safety issue.
  • zgreat1zgreat1 Posts: 11
    Oh My God! We are confusing COMFORT with SAFETY.

    Having AC is not a necessity, it is a luxury. Regardless where you live. How did people live just 10-20 years ago when A/C's were not standard on cars?

    Yes, it is uncomfortable driving without A/C, but I guess, to someone who grew up pampered, and never had the pleasure of owning a beater when they were 16, they have no memories with driving with windows down and drinking gatorade.....

    YES, IT DOES MATTER WHERE ONE LIVES!! I guess you must not have lived, worked or commuted on a daily basis in the south in 100+F temperatures (HEAT INDICES of 105+F or more). Or you have not realized that things have changed in the last 20 years. When you grew up, your mother probably tended and cared for you and your siblings in your home, most likely a/c-ed. Today, most families like ours have to earn 2 incomes to support our children.,,I have 2 toddlers in day care whom I would love to be able to suddenly turn 16 and drive themselves in cars without a/c in the blazing heat. ... and drink themselves silly with gatorade. WHEN IT COMES TO SMALL CHILDREN AND ELDERLY FOLKS, riding in a car without a/c in 100+F heat is NOT A LUXURY OR COMFORT, IT IS A SAFETY ISSUE. Go check your facts with a medical professional before you put your 2 cents in this forum. THANK YOU!!!
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    If a person is transporting their elderly loved one across the desert a few hundred miles for a family reunion in 115 degree heat and the A/C goes out after the vehicle hasn't even reached halfway to wty end, that is most certainly a safety issue. If at first it seems too convoluted to see it that way, consider then that it 'becomes' a safety issue when it is a known weak part by design, and this is proven by the number of failures with not necessarily very many miles use.
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    edited July 2010
    that is most certainly a safety issue

    That may be but I think that the NHTSA's definition of safety may not coincide with what the rest of us might regard it to be. They are concerned with safety related to the functioning of the vehicle and not the driver. For example, driving drunk is a safety issue but that is not in the purview of NHTSA while tires that may fall off at highway speeds is a safety matter independent of the driver and, therefore, a concern to NHTSA. IMHO, air conditioning falls into the former category.

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 19,600
    You can call the NHTSA all you want to and they won't care.

    Like someone else said, it has nothing to do with safety and THAT is what the NHTSA get's involved in!
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 19,600
    Wow, after reading your post, I'm wondering how I ever survived my childhood growing up in Southern California in a non airconditioned house and non air conditioned cars?

    Guess I got lucky!
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 19,600
    I don't want to be misunderstood.

    It's not a matter of a car company taking care of a loyal customer vs. a customer they have never seen before. when it comes to making a "goodwill" repair.

    But, if a store is pleading your case to have a long out of warranty component replaced for free or at a reduced cost, I'm sure it could very well sway a decision.

    We are seeing a dogpile effect as often happens in "problems" forums. They are NOT "painfully obviously faulty" as much as the people that have had troubles are claiming.

    I was in my old store today, having the oil changes in our 2003 CRV and once again, I asked several key peoplle about this and, once again, all I got were blank looks. Failures are rare and no more common than on any other Honda. my CRV's compressor fail tomorrow! That would be my luck! :)
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    Well I hope it doesn't of course.

    But I have viewed other Honda model forums and the frequency of A/C woes is pretty noticeable here on this CRV forum.

    Just like the frequency of automatic tranny troubles seem to be greater in number on the Civic forum.

    Believe me, I so hope you are right, but what I find as pretty compelling stats, are the number of failures at mileage figures well under the wty period. And the issue I have with this is those of us who take longer to crank up the miles, all of sudden we (who have just as prone a compressor to failure as the next guy, only he/she drives more) would like some consideration at the same number of miles but has been out of date of wty for many years. Then you get the response..."You want us to wty your part 10 years later?!" Even though your odometer might still be sitting there at 42000 miles lets say. So the time period sounds bad and makes it look like your request is unreasonable, yet if you showed up with the same car, same 42k miles, same compressor issue, just 3 mo out of wty and your chances of goodwill are greater. But let's remember something crucial here in this example, ok? The faulty compressor design, combined with failures at far less than reasonable expected fair use, is still the same compressor! Still a faulty part. Still realize the odds or number of faulty units, being high in number. Sure, some people's units failed at 132000 miles, but others (many more) failed at 45 or 50k miles. This strongly suggests that if the part wasn't an inferior design, then the majority would be failing at 132k miles, not 50k miles. You see my/our point?
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 19,600
    I retired in May. I no longer sell Hondas and even when I did, I didn't blindly defend them. I have no dog in this fight. I am only trying to reduce some of the anxiety that springs form forums like this one.

    Two things have an effect on how long a part lasts. Time and miles. No, I wouldn't expect ANY car company to replace a ten year old AC compressor even if the car had 42,000 miles.

    As I said before, sooner or later, every AC compressor will fail. Some may last 300,000 miles and some may last 50,000 miles.

    Our 2003 CRV is seven years old with only 51,000 miles. It has been flawless.

    If the AC compressor blew tomorrow, yes, I wouldn't be happy and I would call Honda to see if they would foot part of the bill. If the answer was no, I would lick my wounds and get it fixed.

    I would not get on a forum and complain about how I was wronged and about how I would never buy another Honda.

    But, this is what forums like this are for and sometimes it's a good thing to vent and ask others about their experiences.

    I'm just trying to calm people down that own CRV's that they will mre than likely not have a failed compressor. They just don't go bad all that often.
  • shima1shima1 Posts: 19
    By now we should all know it's a waste of energy to pay much attention to anything blueiedgod or isellhondas has to say.
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    edited July 2010
    Gosh ain't it the truth, talk about blatant blind denial. And how (the one anyway) doesn't see his defending Honda as being every bit as vocal as others complaining is beyond me.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 19,600
    edited July 2010
    Sorry for trying to calm things down by telling it like it REALLY is.

    I know misery loves company.
  • tapone1tapone1 Posts: 8
    Not expecting much as I have 116K on my 2003 CR-V. Last week they advised me it would be $2900 for a new a/c system. Called American Honda, explained how they took care of us with our 2000 Odyssey (catalytic converter out at 82K when the warranty was 80K; doors kept sticking for almost the entire 8 years we owned it; tranny went at 80K - although Honda extended all Ody tranny warranties to 100K). Nor do I really expect Honda to do anything and should be happy that absent perhaps $300, I spent nothing on this car other than normal wear/tear items and oil changes. It just is disappointing to have to spend $ on this car that is about 50% or more of the value (in fact, the Subaru dealer was only willing to give me $3800 for a trade, so $3K for a repair is even more crazy). In any event, I will report back later. Has anyone had this issue fixed at a private repair shop for less than the dealer quote??
  • I have just spent approx $760 on parts alone for the third repair on my 02. Thankfully a very good friend did all the work but please do not tell me that this is normal for three compressors to fail in less than four years. I have under 165K on the car and this started long before i reached 100k. While others keep saying sell, i am not in any position to buy as i know what i have and will not go new --not in this economy.
    I really like this vehicle and only need it to live for another two years for treks to Vermont as my child is in college there but the AC impacts the defrost. I struggle with the concept of NORM as i have owned many cars -toyotas, hondas, VW and put high mileage on and no other vehicle ever had this issue.
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    There are lots of posts under different thread names and on other forums besides this one. And most people are paying around 1500. for the entire system to be replaced. (cuz the metal bits from the compressor self-destructing goes throughout the rest of the system. I have read that one guy had success flushing his original hoses, but even that repair was too new to know if has long lasting affects.

    Compressor and condenser I have seen at 435. and evaporator about 220. The labour is a big chunk too though, but many dealers are overcharging the labour rate by often twice the proper amount.

    Subes have their own host of problems later on down the road, so there is no free ride I'm sorry to say. And Mazda can still be on another planet with their parts pricing. So that leaves Honda, Toyota and Nissan as the other big 3 Asian builds.
    GM is still a trainwreck at times, Chrysler is about done, and Ford has been caught in many less than stellar practices what are ya gonna do.
  • blueiedgodblueiedgod Posts: 2,798
    Sounds like I touched a nerve ending here. However, this is where majority of the problems with this country start. People have this skewed view of what is right and what is wrong.

    I never said that A/C did not fail, or that it was not a problem. I simply argued that comfort of an air conditioned vehicle is luxury, not safety. And what do I get in response? It is a waste of energy to respond? Good job!!! Maybe it is a waste of energy running ai conditioning and contributing to the global warming? Ever thought of that? That the added heat, as has been pointed out, is ruining the planet.

    No one ever forced anyone to live where they don't want to live. Yes, I hate heat, there is no way I would ever move south, WAAAAYYY too hot. But, yes, I have lived in a major metropolitan area, NYC for many many years. And guess what, drove stick and with out the air conditioner. If one is stuck in traffic, and there is no air flow, there is no reason to ride the bumper of the car infront. Simply leave enough buffer zone and you will be crusing at 5 mph through the thickest of the jams. And guess what, driving stick, you can do a 5 mph crawl without having to clutch, apply brakes, just by simply modulating the throttle.

    People are free to choose where they live and what they do. I did not like the weather in NYC. Even NYC is too hot for me, so I moved to where I am comfortable.

    As to not being able to drive safely without A/C, I say BUNK!!! I ride from April through October, there is no A/C on a bike!!!

    To whoever pointed out that my mother stayed at home, they were right. But, no one is forcing both parents to work these days, either. You just have to make sacrifices. My sister and I grew up in a small apartment, without air conditioning. We had one old black and white TV (in the 1980's and 90's!!!!) and went to public schools. Went to public universities, and paid for our own education with loans and grants.

    No one needs a 4,000 ft² house and a nanny to raise 2 children. Once again, not a

    But this whole conversation has been off topic. The main point is that A/C is a luxury, not necessity. If it is a necessity, i.e. elderly, sick, weak... they are living in a climate they are not meant to live. Example, there areplenty of people south of the US, where it is even hotter than here, and they have no A/C's and, they do have major metropolitan areas (Mexico City is larger than NYC).

    This simple concept of living within your means has been lost on most people, and these are the people who can't differentiate between "needs" and "wants." Good luck going through life like that.
  • beyondoilbeyondoil Posts: 15
    I think you are on the edge of insanity and your opinions about your lifestyle and where you live have nothing to do with a technological problem that happens to exist in certain Honda AC units.

    These could be dangerous. Let's say you are using you defroster on a day when the road is really slippery. You AC could lock up and it could cause your CRV to go into a skid. This is a scenario that could really happen and in this case the AC would be a safety issue. It could happen to you living in your simple refrigerated climate. All you would have to do is turn on your defroster unless you don't use that either. :mad:
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 19,600

    Please explain to me how an AC unit could lock up and cause a car to go into a skid?

    I have been in the automotive industry all of my life and that just might be the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard!

    But, please explain. Maybe I'm missing something?
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    edited July 2010
    I didn't make that claim, but I will still reply with my take on that scenario and it is far more of an issue than you would attempt to have us believe.
    If the compressor seizes, it will burn and fry the serpentine belt, which powers such incidental things as power steering pumps, water pumps, alternators and other such engine mounted accessories. Now maybe an alternator loss does not create an immediate 'situation', but the loss of power steering sure does. Vehicles with pwr steering, have ratios in the steering box that are geared for feel (when under power assist) not power, so they are extremely tall gearing...meaning that in event of immediate power assist loss, could feel to the unknowing driver, like it was frozen and would not move at all. Surely I don't have to elaborate further describing what could happen in heavy freeway traffic at 70 mph, or going down some mountain road with marginal guard rails if that is when A/C compressor seized?

    I could elaborate with the loss of a water pump also etc, but I think/hope? you will get my/our point this time?
  • I have a 2004 CRV with 88K miles. My air conditioner compressor blew up. It is being repaired at a friend's non-Honda dealership because I'm at least getting a deal on the repair. He already called Honda to see if they can do anything for me considering this seems to be an ongoing problem with CRVs and was told no because I had so many miles on the car. My question is, Do you think I should pursue this further with Honda and will they shut me down because I am having it repaired at another dealership. Being a woman not the least bit interested in cars I don't want to waste my time chasing Honda if I'm going to get nowhere. I welcome any opinions. Thanks
  • lzclzc Posts: 483
    blueiedgod, you are a little quirky. Still, thanks for the many informative and valuable posts.

    Like many others, I too wish major car components lasted well past their warranty. I wish they lasted the life of the car. But they sometimes don't. For most of us, though, Hondas cost less to maintain and are more reliable. I had a Toyota tranny fail at 106k. Now I know that shouldn't have happened, not when it was serviced regularly and driven sensibly. Otherwise, the car was flawless.

    Bottom line, cars have become so much more reliable than a few decades ago that almost any flaw has now become unacceptable. That sounds to me like a perfect setup to be disappointed.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 19,600
    edited July 2010
    You have no idea what you are talking about.

    I do appreciate the laugh!

    Seriously, you are embarassing yourself.
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    edited July 2010
    Prove it. PROVE IT! Name one thing i said that was not entirely accurate and FACT! But don't make BS claims. If you rebut, PROVE IT! ALtho that will be a trick because you won't be able to. I have you dead to rights and that is the best you can come up with? YOU sir are the one who has embarrassed himself. Your best chance to save face here is admit that every single point I made hit nails squarely on heads. Don't forget, people here reading these replies can think and reason for themselves. If you want to retain some self-respect I'd quit before you pull the dirt in over yourself here. You *claim* that you want to be helpful, but no one is buying it here.

    I have been attempting to give you some benefit of doubt. Not any more though bud. Consider this my last reply to you. In fact I think you more closely resemble a troll and your last post just confirmed it.

    Glad you are retired from the business. Salesmen are notorious for not having a clue about what they are selling anyway. But you aren't selling anyone here anything.

    edit- friendly pc of is ok if you want to retract what you said and admit you stepped over the line. There is no shame in admitting you were...dare i say....wrong.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    This discussion is about Honda CR-V AC compressor problems, not each other.

    Thanks for sticking to the topic.
  • belacquabelacqua Posts: 15
    powder puff--As a female, I have found it in my best interest over the years to learn as much as I can about cars because some (not all) in the auto business see women as a target. If you got a deal on the repair, consider yourself lucky. Do not stress yourself out with American Honda. Let your friend keep servicing your car.

    I have an '02 Honda--88K--AC went out July 10. The first dealership said, "You are the second owner and haven't been having your car serviced here. No help from us." Yesterday, I purchased a new Honda Element from a different dealership and left the CR-V there for them look at. I requested that they call American Honda and ask for a goodwill warranty. I don't expect any help, though.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 19,600
    There is NO WAY a failed AC compressor can throw a car into a skid so it's probably time to move on.
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    edited July 2010
    I advise you to go back and reread my post #1604. Right at the beginning I state in clear black and white that i did not make that claim! Perhaps you intended to reply to the original poster who did claim what you are refuting here. I see you do that often on your other threads, so you are no stranger to dishing out grief, yet claiming you were trying to be 'helpful'.

    "Sell" it to someone else, ok?? Or better yet do a full retirement.

    I suggest to you HONDA, to slow down and be more sure where you are slinging your accusations.

    note to HOST - I mean no disrespect to your request to keep it about the A/C compressor on this thread by defending myself here, but I did ask nicely that he not put words in my mouth. And I feel it is important that others DO understand the risks of the loss of a serpentine belt. If you are mechanical yourself, you will know what I said is true in post #1604 and I would like you to quash these idiotic/incorrect posts/accusations by (the one who would have us believe he sold hondas) by feebly attempting to dispute my good and absolutely correct advice.
  • blueiedgodblueiedgod Posts: 2,798
    edited July 2010
    I think you are on the edge of insanity and your opinions about your lifestyle and where you live have nothing to do with a technological problem that happens to exist in certain Honda AC units.

    These could be dangerous. Let's say you are using you defroster on a day when the road is really slippery. You AC could lock up and it could cause your CRV to go into a skid. This is a scenario that could really happen and in this case the AC would be a safety issue. It could happen to you living in your simple refrigerated climate. All you would have to do is turn on your defroster unless you don't use that either

    a) I drive stick. Whatever happens to engine, I have full control over the connection between the engine and transmission. Whether the engine decides to rev out of control, or cuts out and siezes. I have full control of the clutch, the connection between the engine and transmission.

    b) I have actually re-programmed the de-fogger to have manual over ride over the compressor engagement. Simply because A/C is not always needed. Winter air is usually dried by the formation of snow crystals.

    c) Defroster has ABSOLUTELY nothing to do with the windshield. Defroster is thin wires that heat up when current is aplied. Most cars have them on the back window, but some, like subaru, have them at the base of the front windshield to keep the wipers from freezing.

    d) Applying brakes on a slick surface will cause the vehicle to go into a major skid more so than a siezed a/c compressor.

    e) Automatic transmission does not have a direct connection between the engine and transmission. Torque converter is just another form of viscous coupling. Which is what allows you to step on the brakes and stop the vehicle, while the engine is running. Shutting off engine at speed will just let the vehicle coast with some resistance. But, no where near the direct resitance that a manually operated clutch allows. Hence, one can't bump start a dead car with automatic. There is too much loss in the torque converter to turn the engine while the car is rolling.

    f)If you are caught in a humid location without the functioning A/C to dehumidify the windshield, turn on the heat. Hot airt will clear up the windshield just as well as A/C. Ever wonder why people with forced air heat have dry skin if they don't have a humidifier?

    I am not asking you, or anyone else to be an automotive expert, but common sense and 6th grade physics, as well as 4th grade earth science concepts apply to pretty much everything we encounter in every day life.

    Yes, Honda has a problem with compressors blowing up, but it is not a safety concern. It is simply a comfort concern, and as far as I know, there is no government agency to guarantee comfort.
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    Perhaps you intended to reply to the original poster who did claim what you are refuting here.

    I think that is correct. IMHO, Isell was simply asking that we all move on and didn't intend to imply you were responsible for the original statement. In any case, it IS time for all to tone it down and move on. :)

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
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