Could Your A/C System Issues Be Caused by a Diminutive Sensor?

The modern-day automobile relies on a complicated array of sensors, switches, relays and other electronic devices. All of these components are connected to a central "brain" which helps to ensure that the vehicle is reliable, cost effective and safe. While many of these parts relate to engine performance and "on the road" drivability, others help to make life more comfortable for the occupants of the car. While these particular sensors will generally be reliable, issues can sometimes materialise, and if your A/C system is playing up, it could be down to a relatively diminutive component like the evaporator temperature sensor. What does this do, and how do you know if it is on its way out?

Understanding the Sensor

This sensor monitors and regulates the temperature of the evaporator, one of two crucial components within the A/C system. It is attached to the evaporator and keeps a close eye on its temperature during regular operation, to keep it within a narrow and ideal operating range.

If the sensor determines that the temperature is too high, it will send a message to the "brain," which will, in turn, increase flow through the system to augment the cooling effect. On the contrary, if the temperature falls below a certain level, then refrigerant flow will be curtailed to prevent the evaporator from freezing.

Erratic Performance

You may notice that your A/C system is behaving strangely. One minute, it seems to be too warm, and the next it is way too cold. This is a sign that the evaporator temperature sensor is failing, and you will need to take steps to fix this as soon as possible. Otherwise, it could cause significant strain on the compressor as well as the evaporator and lead to a costly repair bill.

Full System Failure

If the sensor were to fail altogether, it could incapacitate the entire system. Without an instruction from this switch, the system is rendered useless and will not be able to produce any cold air whatsoever.

Check Here First

Most people will look at the core component parts should a significant issue materialise with their A/C system. However, they should pay attention to the evaporator temperature sensor first, as while this is a simple and relatively cheap part, it can often be the cause of the problem.

Taking Action

If you suspect that this sensor and switch may be holding your system back, ask your air conditioning car service company to do a diagnostic check and fix the issue as necessary.