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Elise MY17.5 Air conditioning woes - Interior/Exterior/Lights/Glass/Alarms/ICE/HVAC/Other - The Lotus Forums #ForTheOwners Jump to content


Elise MY17.5 Air conditioning woes


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Hi guys,

6 months ago I bought a new Elise 220 my17.5.

The first time I turned on the air conditioning, I realized it wasn't working. I brought the car back to the dealer for the 10k km service and got the gas circuit filled up. The mechanic who worked on it assured me that no leakage was detected. 

Fast forward a few weeks, the gas circuit is empty again.

It's been in service for over a month now and the dealer has no clue whatsoever of where the gas is leaking from.

According to the guys who have been working on it the reasons they cannot identify the leakage are the following:

- the new r1234 gas that is being used in the system does not allow for tracing gases to be added, so they have to use an electronic instrument that should trace the leakage, but it is not possible to use it in a packed environment such as the underbody of the Elise

- Lotus provides little to no support to them. They say the issue might be caused by some O-rings which have the wrong diameter, but they don't specify which ones. 

Long story short: the Elise is my only car so I will have to take it back from the dealer with the air conditioning still not working (or working for the next 3 or 4 weeks, if they filled up the circuit) and do without it during a scorching hot Italian summer. 

Anyone here who has the same issue and/or some advice?

Thanks in advance

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They are wrong to say that R1234yf is not suitable for use with leak detection fluid:

https://www.errecom.com/en/function/look-for-refrigerant-gas-leaks/

https://www.amazon.co.uk/BRILLIANT-detector-systems-Electric-Vehicles/dp/B01JAJ1EUG

I would suggest you take the car to a vehicle air con specialist who will be able to identify the leak location fairly easily. Alternatively give the dealer the leak detection fluid and instructions.

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Chances are it's the pad connector near the ac compressor. You can use leak detector dye, no problem.

The actually filled with 1234YF gas by the way. 

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Thanks guys,

I don't want to bring the car to a specialist, since all the work should be covered by the warranty. 

I will gladly send the link to this discussion to the dealer, though. 

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Good point. The dealer must have the correct equipment to deal with R1234yf. They can't use R134 equipment unless its been modified. In that case it can no longer be used for R134. Maybe its the dealer who should call in a specialist?

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18 hours ago, S2111S said:

Good point. The dealer must have the correct equipment to deal with R1234yf. They can't use R134 equipment unless its been modified. In that case it can no longer be used for R134. Maybe its the dealer who should call in a specialist?

They told me they have the equipment for the r1234yf... but I'm starting to wonder if they know what they're doing...

I frankly don't understand why they claimed that the gas is not suitable to use with the leak tracing fluid.

Anyway, I'm moving to Switzerland for work and the Elise is coming with me. I'll probably have it repaired here instead.

Edited by GMdV
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  • 3 weeks later...

My 111r spent the summer to the same problem and after 2 months they discovered a leak from an O-ring located at the exit of the chassy.

I've blamed mine because is 14 years old but i see that things go worse even with new cars...

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