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Evora 400 air-con broken again - annual event. - Interior/Exterior/Lights/Glass/Alarms/ICE/HVAC/Other - The Lotus Forums #ForTheOwners Jump to content


Evora 400 air-con broken again - annual event.


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It has never worked reliably on the car ever since I bought it new in March 2017 and it has stopped cooling once again. I'm beginning to think that working Evora 400 air-con is a subscription service.

I had it re-gassed twice, I think, at annual services during the 3 year warranty period and it would work well through the Summer, only to be no longer cooling come the following Spring.  Dealer did their best to find a leak but could not.

Then last Spring the air-con pump seized, just out of the car's warranty, and was replaced as a good will gesture by Lotus. Air-con was working fine through the summer but once again, I have come to use it on cold on the first warm day of the following year only to find absolutely no cooling at all.

Before anyone mentions that you should also use the air-con during the Winter to keep the system lubricated, I regularly used it blowing hot to de-mist the car during the Winter months. The Evora is my only car.

I'd like to have working air-con but having to pay for annual re-gassing seems a bit much. My main worry is that a lack of refrigerant and oil in the system could make the new air-con pump seize like the last one did, making the car un-drivable.

Any advice how to get it fixed once and for all?

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I can only tell you how the problem was eventually solved on my S after losing the gas 3 times in a month after picking it up.

Lotus Silverstone re-gassed it and put a dye in the system. The leak, a slow one, was eventually traced with the help of the dye to a split O ring on one of the pipes. After replacing that it was faultless for the 4 years I had it.

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You need to find someone who understands air con on cars. It is a pretty simple system but most 'mechanics' seem to think that chucking some more refrigerant will fix things.

You need someone with a vacuum pump to exhaust it, let it sit and see if it holds a vacuum over a few hours. If it does then suck it dry, refill with refrigerant, oil and a uv dye . Then every few days for a month or so check round all the connection points with a uv light. It may seal or it may not. Make sure whoever does the work also checks the air temp before and after the vacuum and refill exercise. It will give you a temp to check for as well. (meat thermometer stuck in the air vent).

Obviously if it doesn't hold a vacuum, then there is a leak that can be seen almost immediately. Techie should fill and check all joints, rad fins etc as above and tell you what is needed for a replacement.

 

 

 

 

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15 hours ago, Bruss said:

You need to find someone who understands air con on cars. It is a pretty simple system but most 'mechanics' seem to think that chucking some more refrigerant will fix things.

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That is so true, Bruss.  I solved my car's issues only after going to an air-con specialist garage.

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Absolutley agree with all the above. Also as I suspected mine had got a little low on gas as it would freeze up, I got a top up canister from halfords. Its simple enough and no more scientific than a pressure guage which you adjust depending on the ambient temperature, but it does allow you to top the system up without a dealer trip. It worked a treat, it also help my diagnose my mums car aircon which had been overgassed! 

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Thanks for the suggestions everybody.

I've looked back at my diary for last year and I picked up the car at the end of July 2020 after its compressor replacement, so it has lost enough gas to stop the air-con cooling in 8 months or less.

My understanding is that the dealer tried doing vacuum tests and putting in UV dye to try and find a leak, but had no luck. Are there sometimes leaks that only blow and don't suck, so a vacuum test will not find them?

It will be going in for its 4 year service soon so will ask them to look at it, but I don't want to be throwing money away on just re-gassing it again. I'm not sure what warranty Lotus will be prepared to offer on an just-out-of-warranty goodwill repair.

Failing that, can anyone recommend a good independent air-con specialist who could look at the car?

I don't want to have to be resorting to annual DIY recharges (expensive as my car uses the new R1234 gas) or air-con "stop leak", which I assume is total bodgery that could wreck the system!

 

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Yes you can have leaks that only leak under pressure and not loose a vacuum generally O rings can produce this syndrome but it's quite rare usually I find that a system will hold a pressure test but can leak after it's placed on a vacuum and it's always an O ring seal where the O ring has moved but again it's a rare occurrence.

 

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