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Summary
  • AC flush kits are used to flush out contaminants and debris in the air conditioning system.
  • AC flushing is done when the AC system is contaminated or clogged, is opened, or needs to be recharged. It’s also recommended when AC parts, like the compressor, need repairs or replacement.
  • Some ways to keep the AC in good condition include servicing the vehicle regularly, using defrost mode at least 10 minutes a week, and cleaning the cabin.

AC flush kits include tools that are used to perform AC flushing, which is the process of clearing out debris in a vehicle’s air conditioning system.

The kits usually include a flush gun, a canister, and an adapter and hose. Some AC flush kits come with cleaning solutions, while others require you to buy them separately.

When Should You Use An AC Flush Kit?

It’s recommended to use an AC flush kit or have your AC system professionally flushed if you had an AC compressor failure. If it failed internally, it could send out metal throughout the system, spreading contaminants and possibly forming blockages.

Why Do AC Systems Need Flushing?

AC systems need flushing to prevent the buildup of contaminants. Dirt and debris can coalesce into gunk that blocks the flow of refrigerant to various parts, preventing them from working properly. Components can also malfunction and eject debris that can contaminate the system.

The AC compressor becoming faulty almost always warrants an AC flushing. It’s the only moving part in the AC system, which is closed and self-contained.

Repairing or replacing the compressor would involve opening the system, which can let debris enter. Not to mention, the compressor can also release contaminants, which will circulate and later clog the system.

How Much Does It Cost to Flush a Car AC System?

Expect to spend an average of $150 to $500 for an AC flush, depending on the vehicle. AC flushing takes time and requires a lot of mechanical expertise, so it’s best to think twice about DIY-ing this task.

How to Flush an AC System

While AC flushing kits let vehicle owners do the flushing on their own, the job is mostly left to the pros because it requires a lot of technical know-how. If you’re a highly skilled DIYer with in-depth knowledge of car repair, you can use the kit to do it yourself.

Otherwise, it’s best to take your ride to an auto repair shop when it’s time to flush its AC system. If you’re curious about how mechanics perform AC system flushes, here’s how the process usually goes.

  1. The hose of the flush gun is inserted into a bucket filled with a cleaning solution. This lets it fire jets of cleaning solution into the AC system.
  2. The AC system is opened, and the flush gun is used to clean the evaporator.
  3. The same process is done on the AC condenser.
  4. The AC hoses are removed from the system before being cleaned.
  5. Apply oil to the components once again.
  6. The hoses are reattached afterward.

How to Keep Your Car AC in Good Condition

If you want to avoid the need to use AC flush kits, keep the AC in good condition. This can be done by changing the air filter regularly, dusting the cabin, servicing the vehicle, and using defrost mode once a week.

Avoid Pre-Cooling

Pre-cooling refers to when drivers let the air conditioner run before driving to try and cool the car down. Because your air conditioning works best when you’re driving your vehicle, pre-cooling your car can do more harm than good. If you have to keep your vehicle cool, lower the windows and drive around to let the air in.

Change the Air Filter Regularly

The filter prevents contaminants and pollutants from releasing into the cabin by the air conditioning system. Over time, the debris amasses and clogs the AC. To prevent this from happening, change the filters once every three months.

Dust and Clean Your Vehicle

Dust can accumulate and clog your air conditioning system. Regularly cleaning your vehicle can keep dust and dirt buildup to a minimum. You can use a duster or a vacuum cleaner to get dust out of hard-to-reach places in your vehicle.

Have Your Vehicle Serviced Regularly

It’s important to get your vehicle serviced by a professional at least once a year. This way, you’ll have an expert take a closer look at your vehicle and determine if anything is out of the ordinary. You’ll have an easier time pinpointing and solving problems with the air conditioning system.

Use Defrost Mode

It’s important to let your AC run in defrost mode for at least 10 minutes once a week. Do this at your AC’s coolest setting and maximum fan speed to maintain gas pressure. This also keeps the compressor running and cleans out moisture, preventing moss and fungus from growing.

About The Authors
Written By Automotive and Tech Writers

The CarParts.com Research Team is composed of experienced automotive and tech writers working with (ASE)-certified automobile technicians and automotive journalists to bring up-to-date, helpful information to car owners in the US. Guided by CarParts.com's thorough editorial process, our team strives to produce guides and resources DIYers and casual car owners can trust.

Reviewed By Technical Reviewer at CarParts.com

Tony Harlin is a Master Gas and Diesel Diagnostic Technician with over 18 years of experience. He works full-time at a large independent automotive shop as a driveability and repair technician working on all types of vehicles with a focus on diesels. ASE certifications include A1-A9, L1 and L2, as well as X1.

Any information provided on this Website is for informational purposes only and is not intended to replace consultation with a professional mechanic. The accuracy and timeliness of the information may change from the time of publication.

File Under : Air Conditioning and Heating , DIY Tagged With :
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