Mick F

Hybrid Air Conditioning

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We never turn ours off.  Never did with the previous cars either.  Leave it on permanently.  Aircon is just that - air conditioning - you can have it cold or hot or any temp in between.

I'm off out on a bike ride this morning, and I'll be calling in at a local independent who advertise their re-gassing price on a big sandwich board outside.  Can't remember what they say they'll charge, but I will go in and ask them regarding the R134a gas as well as the ND11 Oil.  Specifically the ND11.

Meanwhile, I'll be phoning Snows Toyota at Plympton to ask how much they'll charge if they were to do it during the intermediate service.

Thanks guys, and I'll get back to this later today with some numbers.

Mick.

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Interesting to see 'sight glass' mentioned on those images of the stickers. I thought they disappeared back in the the days of R12, and very useful they were in diagnosing problems. 

Very little Oil is added during a regas as most of the Oil in the system resides and remains in the compressor... at least  in conventional compressors... and its a rather precisely imprecise science to add about the right amount back to the system. A/C specialists know what to do and get it right so don't worry.

 

  

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Just come off the phone to Snows Toyota Plymouth.  The chap says because it's R134a it's much cheaper than 1234a.

The 1234a would be £130, and the 134a (only) £69.95.

Off out soon on the bike and I'll be asking locally.  I doubt the price difference will be worth it, as Toyota can do it (properly?) when doing the service.

Mick.

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Whether Toyota recommend similar but in addition to what Kingo wrote re testing, Peugeot/Citroen also ran the engine at 2000 rpm when completing the vent output temperature check? That was non hybrids of course. Does the compessor run at one speed or varies with a hybrid?

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17 hours ago, Mick F said:

Thanks.  Looks like the next service could be more expensive then!  Last one at 30,000miles plus MOT was £330 as a full service.  I expected the next one at 40,000miles would be cheaper as it's an interim service (plus MOT).  Looks like another bit of dosh to pay out on top as it's best that it's done properly.

I said years ago, that I would never have another car without aircon.  Auto Climate Control is even better. Leave it on permanently and the car internals feel fresh and clean and at the right temperature.

Mick.

What are the yaris hybrids like on auto climate? how does it effect the fuel economy running it all the time.

 

Alan

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20 minutes ago, AL21784 said:

What are the yaris hybrids like on auto climate? how does it effect the fuel economy running it all the time.

ACC is just the same as a manual system, but you set the temperature you want and it controls the flaps and vents for you.  You can turn off the AAC but still have aircon on, but do what you want with the vent controls.  As for fuel consumption, I have no records for what it's like when it's off, and neither have I for the previous two cars with aircon.  They were left on all the time.  As far as I understand it, once the car is at the temp you want, the system ticks over and is far less fuel-hungry than leaving a window or two open.  False economy turning it off and opening a window.

Remember, aircon is just air conditioning.  It conditions the air by removing humidity, and then you can have what ever temperature you want it at.

 

Back to my investigations ..............

Local place has a sandwich board outside, and it says "From £65" ........ so therefore it's better to go to Toyota at £69.95 as the car is still under warranty and Toyota will have the correct equipment and knowledge.

I'll be booking a service in the next week or two.

Mick.

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37 minutes ago, Mick F said:

ACC is just the same as a manual system, but you set the temperature you want and it controls the flaps and vents for you.  You can turn off the AAC but still have aircon on, but do what you want with the vent controls.  As for fuel consumption, I have no records for what it's like when it's off, and neither have I for the previous two cars with aircon.  They were left on all the time.  As far as I understand it, once the car is at the temp you want, the system ticks over and is far less fuel-hungry than leaving a window or two open.  False economy turning it off and opening a window.

Remember, aircon is just air conditioning.  It conditions the air by removing humidity, and then you can have what ever temperature you want it at.

 

Mick.

I've had a couple of cars with dual zone climate, my old vectra Elite had it but the air con didn't work as there was a 1"x1" hole thought the condenser.

we get a GR-Sport in a couple of months and that has it, it'll be my first hybrid.

 

Alan

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£69 for an R134a regas sounds very expensive to me. Its up to you but don't be pressured into having a 'full aircon service' if you feel you don't want or need that. Such a 'service' may include use of a sanitiser on the evaporator (those aerosol do-dahs you set off inside the car with the AC on recirculate to fumigate everything).

A basic regas should cost half that figure... in fact Vantage Toyota list just such a service for just under £40.

https://www.vantagemotorgroup.co.uk/toyota/servicing-offers/air-conditioning-/#QWlyIENvbmRpdGlvbmluZyBSZS1HYXM

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On 7/11/2019 at 12:16 PM, Mooly said:

£69 for an R134a regas sounds very expensive to me. Its up to you but don't be pressured into having a 'full aircon service' if you feel you don't want or need that. Such a 'service' may include use of a sanitiser on the evaporator (those aerosol do-dahs you set off inside the car with the AC on recirculate to fumigate everything).

A basic regas should cost half that figure... in fact Vantage Toyota list just such a service for just under £40.

https://www.vantagemotorgroup.co.uk/toyota/servicing-offers/air-conditioning-/#QWlyIENvbmRpdGlvbmluZyBSZS1HYXM

Clicking on that link it says "From £59".

Thanks for the advice re the "full aircon service".  I'll be phoning this morning to book the service and I'll book the aircon re-gas too.  I have been thinking that perhaps this heatwave has passed for this summer, so unless the outside temp goes above 23degC the system as it is seems to work fine ....................... so it could wait until next year!

However, the issue of having something not running as efficiently as it should is bound to impinge on the fuel economy.  It could possibly be a false economy NOT to have it re-gassed.

Lets say we lose 5mpg by not having it done.  Lets say that's 10% of the fuel cost wasted.  Extrapolate that over a year @ 10,000miles per annum = maybe £1,100 in petrol?  Plus 10% means £110 extra ie the cost of the aircon service is easily paid for!   Generalisations and approximations of costs I know, but the principle could still be valid.

Mick.

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Did you scroll down the page? £59 is for an 'air con service', £39 for just a regas. 

Personally I would be inclined to get it done because if it is slightly low on charge then it will only get even lower over the next 12 months. Published figures for 'natural' leakage for R134a A/C systems seem to vary from 5% to 20% annually so even at the lower end of that scale the loss adds up significantly over time.

  

Annotation 2019-07-15 074828.png

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Thanks.  No, silly me, I didn't look any further than the first figure.

As I've said, we had a Clio from brand new in 2001, and when we sold her in 2017 - sixteen years and 100,000miles later - the aircon had never been off and still worked perfectly and never had any re-gassing or maintenance other than changing the cabin filter a couple of times.

I'll be ringing Toyota in Plympton shortly for a chat etc ............... after a cuppa.  Been out in the garden hacking and slashing.  Not particularly sunny out there, but very warm, and it's hot work!

Mick.

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Your Clio was certainly a shining example of what can achieved. I've had the my A/C recharged twice, once at 4yrs and once at 8yrs, not because of issues but just as preventative maintenance. I felt after the first recharge that it was genuinely better and then didn't really notice any difference after the second. Like you I keep it on 24/7

I suppose we should all check the vent temperatures on our new and recently regassed cars and then keep that as a baseline to see if deterioration has occurred at any future point in time. 

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11 minutes ago, Mooly said:

I suppose we should all check the vent temperatures on our new and recently regassed cars and then keep that as a baseline to see if deterioration has occurred at any future point in time. 

This is a good point.

It has been said that it should be at 10degC when on full cold so I'll be checking ours after I collect it.   Booked in for Friday 26th July 10:30am.  Intermediate service, MOT and aircon sorting.  Chatted to them over the phone, and I'll chat again when I deliver it to them.

They say it could all take three or four hours, so I'll be taking a bike and going off for a good ride - maybe 40miles depending on the weather.

Mick.

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3-4 hours sounds about right for all of that. The A/C system will be discharged and the refrigerant recovered for recycling, then the system is pumped down to a vacuum to remove all traces of moisture (as pressure is reduced any water boils at lower temperatures... room temperature and below). Finally the system will be refilled with the correct weight of refrigerant together with a little Oil to replace the very small amount that will have carried out along with the old gas.

Then your good to go 🙂

 

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@Alan You will love the GR sport excellent on country roads and for town driving, use mine mainly for short trips to work with the odd few weekend long runs out getting 56.6 MPG at moment with approx 2900 miles on clock, my first hybrid too 😁

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5 hours ago, Eddie G said:

@Alan You will love the GR sport excellent on country roads and for town driving, use mine mainly for short trips to work with the odd few weekend long runs out getting 56.6 MPG at moment with approx 2900 miles on clock, my first hybrid too 😁

 I can’t wait for it to get here now, i’m Currently getting about 43.6 from my Aygo driving 90% city driving. The aygo was always supposed to be the 2nd car, but i scrapped my old vectra and used this as it was a lot cheaper to run.

The GR-Sport arrives mid October, when the aygo goes back. I tried getting a test drive in one, but Toyota have told me it’s quite a rare car and thy can’t get hold of one,

 

Alan

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A good tip is to lift off the accelerator a tad when your up to speed( around the 30mph mark, speeds higher and normal engine only is available to use) and it gets the electric motor to kick back in more quickly, took me a bit to get used to it and the auto gears, drive it smooth and it's fantastic, the GT86 steering wheel it comes with feels great and the sports seats are super too, build quality is excellent feels well put together 👍

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In central France yesterday afternoon I had to park the car in an unshaded car park for 4 hours.  The exterior temp gauge showed 38 C on my return. Switched engine on opened all windows and set aircon temp to 18 C drove off and in 5 minutes and was able to shut windows and drive home in comfort. The fan speed decreased to normal as I drove and I reset the aircon to 19.5c  where I usually leave it during summer months. The exterior air temp was actually 29C. Next week we will be probably over 40 C so what temp the gauge will record I don't know.

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I was out in North Cornwall yesterday afternoon.  Outside temp was 20degC, and the aircon couldn't cope with it being set to 18degC even though the fan was trying on full set to auto.  There's also a smell of stale air in the car.  Whatever is wrong with ours, is getting far worse and I can't wait for Friday when it goes in for service.  With a bit of luck there will be a solid hard defect that can be fixed under warranty rather than just a re-gas.

Mick.

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I thought my aircon was 'weak' and mentioned it during a service visit. They found a leak on the condenser and replaced it under warranty.

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Update:

Car has been serviced plus an MOT.  They also checked out the aircon.

It seems that the gas was down a bit so they've added more plus some dye.  They want me to go back in a week or two so they can shine an ultra violet(?) light on the pipes etc to see if there is a leak.

Meanwhile, they've replaced the cabin filter and cleaned out all the ducts and vents.  They've put some sort of clean smell in there too.

They made sure that I was leaving the aircon on permanently.  I assured them that I do. They added that it's what they ALWAYS recommend that owners should leave it on.  They are aware that we bought the car just before its third birthday and how we can never know what the previous owner did, and that the car was unused for a few months too.  These facts could very well have affected the aircon system as it loves to be used and dislikes being off.

Anyway, it'll be going back mid August for a check-up and meanwhile it works properly! 😀

Mick.

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Pleased to hear its working properly now, and tbh I doubt there is any underlying problem. Just leave it on 24/7. Cleaning the system is something you can do yourself... they probably use an aerosol canister of some kind of sanitiser that you set off from inside the car footwell while having the A/C on recirculate at a high flow rate. You can buy those things. Here is video showing one in action. 

Aerosol Sanitiser

 

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Another update:

Out yesterday a few times, and the weather became quite warm and very sunny.  The aircon - both me and my wife think - is far better than it's been in the two years we've owned the car. The airflow is far better and the cooling is better too.

I don't really know why the airflow should be better.  I know they've changed the cabin filter, but for much of the driving yesterday, the system was on recirc, so the cabin filter wouldn't be used.  Is this correct?

Any clues to why the airflow is better?

Mick.

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You would assume the filter wouldn't be in the air flow path on recirculate although I suppose technically there is no reason why not depending how the system was designed and where the changeover flaps for recirc/fresh are located in the air flow path. Based on other cars I've seen though I would have said 99% that it was not.

Maybe the flow just feels better because of the lower vent temperature.

 

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37 minutes ago, Mooly said:

Maybe the flow just feels better because of the lower vent temperature.

 

Possibly, but Mrs Mick F reports that the passenger footwell airflow is good now, and she didn't really notice there was any there before.

Generally, we leave the system in Auto, but she's always complained that she would like the flow differently directed - as a driver and as a passenger - so we have played about with the other controls to try it - not really successful.  Leaving it on Auto now, seems to be absolutely fine, though she's non committal at the moment until she's had a drive with it.

Give a week or so, and we will have more thoughts and experience.  Main thing though, it's a very different system now.

Mick.

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