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Help! Air conditioning fault stops car working after dealer service

Posted: Mon May 14, 2018 3:32 am
by nikki
I have a Peugeot ion I bought second hand 3 years ago. I love the car, and have used it for all my local journeys.

Owing to the shortage of qualified electric car mechanics hereabouts, I entered into a 3 year service contract with the Peugeot main dealer in Chester (20 miles away).

Last year when they serviced the car they put 4 new tyres on, and I have had problems with them ever since (2 gradually lose pressure, and the car jumps sideways when it hits a bump).

However it is this year's service that has caused the real problem. During the service they also did the air bag recall, which involved dismantling the whole dashboard, as far as I can tell. When I picked up the car, the clock I had added didn't work - whoever had reassembled the dash had connected both power wires to earth. I also found the headlight auto sensor didn't work - they hadn't reconnected it. I mention all this to give some idea of the competence of the people who worked on the car.

I took it home, discovered the light problem a couple of days later, and arranged to take it back to have it fixed. I put it on charge the night before, but when I came to it in the morning it hadn't charged. A number of experiments later and I fou D t at putting it on charge appeared to work, but about a minute later it stopped charging, and the main electrical circuit light came on (the car with the ! on it).

When I tried to drive the car it was in turtle mode.

I rang the dealer and accused them of breaking my car. They sent a breakdown truck and picked it up. After a few days diagnosing the problem with the help of Peugeot, they said the fault was in the air conditioning compressor (when it is disconnected the car works normally, and will charge via the type 1 socket). They claim they did not cause the fault, and that a new compressor is £3000!

After much discussion, they are now looking for a second hand part. I saw another thread in this forum where someone had a similar problem, which was resolved the same way at a cost of over $1000.

Does anyone have any advice to give?

Is it possible or likely that they broke the air conditioning while messing with the dashboard?

Is there any way of fixing the compressor rather than replacing it?

I am in the UK, by the way.

Re: Help! Air conditioning fault stops car working after dealer service

Posted: Sun May 20, 2018 8:40 am
by justoneman
Probably you are referring to my AC fault situation. I had my AC compressor replaced by a used part. The protocol for the dealership is to replace the AC unit when it is faulting out. I do not see how their working on the dash would cause the AC compressor to fault out. You say it was not faulting out when you got the car from the dealer. Days later you had the problem. In my situation the car was running fine and then suddenly when accelerating on the highway it happened dash lights on and turtle mode. It happens with a snap of the fingers. I think the AC compressor is a ticking time bomb. My solution was my suggestion to the dealership mechanic that being a used part. They found a few online and the price was reasonable compared to the $4000 cost of a new unit. It has been now 6 months since the used unit went into the car. No problems but I drive around expecting this same fault to happen again.

Re: Help! Air conditioning fault stops car working after dealer service

Posted: Sun May 20, 2018 9:33 am
by nikki
Thank you for your reply.

We are looking for a used part, but all the ones we have found so far do not match - apparently there are 3 slightly different ones, and you have to have the right one.

I still hope for comments from a technical expert, as I wonder whether disconnecting and reconnecting all the electrics under the dash (including, presumably, the air conditioning controls) might trigger the fault, particularly if they did it wrong (like they did with two other items).

Although, to be fair, they have spent a lot of time diagnosing the fault, and looking for a spare part, without charging me.

Re: Help! Air conditioning fault stops car working after dealer service

Posted: Sat Jun 02, 2018 6:34 am
by nikki
Well, the news is good.

Mike Casson, the boss at Swansway Peugeot Chester, has spent the last month trying to get this sorted - both looking for a second hand part, and trying to get some help from Peugeot. I have also been on to Peugeot customer services.

Mike and Peugeot between them have finally come up trumps. They have supplied a brand new part, which has been fitted, and Swansway have fitted a new branded tyre to replace the bad one on the rear. I picked up the car today, and have had to pay nothing at all - not even the recovery vehicle who collected the car from my house.

So I am very relieved, and happy to have my car back in fully working order.

It still seems odd that something as apparently unnecessary as an air conditioning compressor should cause the whole car to fail when it goes wrong, and should have such an astronomical replacement cost. When I bought the car, I gambled that the fear and uncertainty in the press about the huge replacement cost of the main battery was just speculation, and the battery would last OK. It had never occurred to me to worry about the air conditioning compressor!

Anyway, I am now a happy customer.