How To Replace Your Air Conditioning Condenser

Got a problem, look here to see if its known or let others know of the issue
User avatar
Paul_S
Posts: 2469
Joined: Tue Jan 03, 2012 8:47 pm
Contact:

How To Replace Your Air Conditioning Condenser

Post by Paul_S » Mon Jun 16, 2014 8:04 pm

This guide shows how replace a faulty air conditioning condenser on a 2011 1.6 Acenta Premium. There may be differences between this an other years / models.When my A/C failed I took the car to my dealer as it is still in warranty. They diagnosed the fault as damage to the condenser - which is not covered by the warranty... They wanted over £800 to fix the A/C so I decided to do it myself.The condenser is the large aluminium thing mounted in front of the radiator. You can see it through the grille. If you put your fist through the wine rack you can punch it - a bit like a stone did to mine! The genuine Nissan condenser will set you back about £600. I bought a patent part from ebay for £84 delivered - more on that later...Just so you know what I am talking about, here is the old one and the new one together:In theory you need to take the front bumper off to replace the condenser, but I thought I knew better!I took a look, and had the idea that you just need to remove the lower bumper section (see this guide).You should have removed these fixings:So the Juke now looked like this:And here is a close up of the condenser:You can see how pitted it is with dead insects, and how the vanes have been bent as it's been hit by various bits of debris.


Paul_S2014-06-16 21:23:45
Always in 'Sport' because life's too short


User avatar
Paul_S
Posts: 2469
Joined: Tue Jan 03, 2012 8:47 pm
Contact:

How To Replace Your Air Conditioning Condenser

Post by Paul_S » Mon Jun 16, 2014 8:05 pm

Removing the old condenserI knew there was no gas left in my A/C system so I had no concerns about breaking any seals. The condenser has a pipe connected (from the A/C pump) at the top left side and another at the bottom left. Unscrew the 2 bolts and pull the pipes out. Be careful not to damage the connectors and O rings.Also, disconnect the wire to the pressure sensor near the bottom left pipe.If you look up in front of the condenser you will see a plastic shield each side and another along the top joining the two. Unclip these so there is nothing touching the condenser. I removed the clips at the top of the bumper to help gain access to the top clips.The condenser is held in place by a couple of rubber mounts at the top and needs to be lowered out of the car. A the bottom there is a metal beam which needs to be loosened off. This also holds the radiator in place but you have enough slack to take the condenser out and leave the radiator in place.To lower the beam, remove the bolt on each side and loosen off the bolts going up into the chassis.Here you can see where I have removed the front bolts left and right, and the beam handing down:Be careful not to slacken off the upright bolts more than you need to.With the condenser removed, swap over the 2 rubber mounts, bottle and pressure sensor onto the new one:It should now look like this:
Paul_S2014-06-16 21:25:22
Always in 'Sport' because life's too short


User avatar
Paul_S
Posts: 2469
Joined: Tue Jan 03, 2012 8:47 pm
Contact:

How To Replace Your Air Conditioning Condenser

Post by Paul_S » Mon Jun 16, 2014 8:05 pm

Now it should just be a case of refitting the condenser (reverse the procedure you used to remove it).However, the patent part I bought had two problems - neither bolt used to retain the pipes fitted. The lower hole was the correct size but wrong thread pitch and the top one was too large.For the top mount I had to drill out the hole to take a new bolt. Here is the original bolt next to the new one:I had to drill out the hole in the connector - see before and after (I plugged the pipe to stop any debris getting into the system):I found a replacement bolt to fit the bottom connection so that was easy.With that done, I bolted everything back up. Be careful not to over-torque the nuts and bolts on the aluminium parts.Paul_S2014-06-16 21:01:42
Always in 'Sport' because life's too short


User avatar
Paul_S
Posts: 2469
Joined: Tue Jan 03, 2012 8:47 pm
Contact:

How To Replace Your Air Conditioning Condenser

Post by Paul_S » Mon Jun 16, 2014 8:06 pm

Quick & cheap guard to protect the new condenserI fitted a cheap and cheerful grille to stop stones damaging the new condenser.I bought some mesh from Wickes (less than a fiver):I bent it in half and used 6 cable ties to fix it in place between the crash bar on the lower beam beneath the condenser:I bent it away from the ambient temperature sensor so it doesn't rub on the wires:The mesh is held very well in place and doesn't rattle at all. Here it is fitted (before I sprayed it black):In hindsight I would have mounted it slightly further to the left as there is a bit of a gap (not as bad as it looks in the pic!) and it doesn't need to be quite as far right as it needs be.I didn't take a pic once it was painted black but needless to say it's almost invisible now and even up close you need to look for it.Paul_S2014-06-16 21:11:14
Always in 'Sport' because life's too short


User avatar
Paul_S
Posts: 2469
Joined: Tue Jan 03, 2012 8:47 pm
Contact:

How To Replace Your Air Conditioning Condenser

Post by Paul_S » Mon Jun 16, 2014 8:06 pm

I took the Juke off to ATS who re-gassed the A/C for the sum of £44.99. It got a full bill of health (they did a vacuum test first) and it's working a treat So, all in, it cost me less than £140 and it's now protected too. Much better than the £800+ Nissan quoted!I bought the condenser from ebay here. I have messaged them to say the threads were wrong. I've yet to hear back. If I do, I'll update the thread.There are other ebay sellers who sell the genuine Nissan condenser with a new bottle fitted. I think these go for just over £100. I think they are classed as 'unboxed' and have been pressure tested. I was going to buy one of those but the listing I was watching finished before I had the chance to purchase it.Paul_S2014-06-16 21:20:21
Always in 'Sport' because life's too short


User avatar
Paul_S
Posts: 2469
Joined: Tue Jan 03, 2012 8:47 pm
Contact:

How To Replace Your Air Conditioning Condenser

Post by Paul_S » Mon Jun 16, 2014 8:07 pm

Finally, I am wondering if it would have been easier to remove the whole bumper (see this thread)....?If there are 2 of you doing it then maybe it's easier to take the whole bumper off. I don't regret leaving it on as I was a little worried about breaking clips and realigning it properly. I've taken the front bumper off my 370Z with no issues but the more you take apart, the more you have to put back together...I would say - be very careful with the new condenser. The aluminium vanes are very delicate and can be easily damaged. I bent a few without even realising it when I fitted it. Luckily I didn't do any damage!Sorry I didn't take more pics, I thought I had done along the way but apparently not!The whole job, including modifying the fixings for the incorrect patent part, took about 3.5 hours. Not bad considering I wasn't rushing it and taking pictures, making tea, etc. along the way. It took ATS about 45 mins to re-gass the system.If you have any questions then please ask Paul_S2014-06-16 21:34:26
Always in 'Sport' because life's too short


User avatar
SirJuke
Posts: 503
Joined: Thu Sep 12, 2013 10:21 am

How To Replace Your Air Conditioning Condenser

Post by SirJuke » Mon Jun 16, 2014 9:20 pm








Being arsed to take the trouble to document this type of repair has always got to be appreciated
Hopefully not many mambers will need it, but it is great to have comprehensive guides
Many thanks
White Tekna, Red interior, Force Red Mirrors, White roof spoiler, Red Ambient lighting, Dynamat, Ugraded Speakers / Amps etc..........ridiculously over priced Nissan Strut Caps


User avatar
Paul_S
Posts: 2469
Joined: Tue Jan 03, 2012 8:47 pm
Contact:

How To Replace Your Air Conditioning Condenser

Post by Paul_S » Mon Jun 16, 2014 9:37 pm

Thanks. I always try to take pics, etc. along the way. In fact, writing this up has nearly taken me as long as actually doing the job! Hopefully I've given someone the confidence to try it for themselves - especially the protection which I would recommend as a must-do job. I think it's a matter of time before your own A/C condenser get holed...
Always in 'Sport' because life's too short


User avatar
SirJuke
Posts: 503
Joined: Thu Sep 12, 2013 10:21 am

How To Replace Your Air Conditioning Condenser

Post by SirJuke » Mon Jun 16, 2014 10:01 pm

I have documented a major hifi install and yes I agree, taking pics and writing up often takes longer than the actual job
But worth the effort if it gives one member pointers and confidence to tackle a job
White Tekna, Red interior, Force Red Mirrors, White roof spoiler, Red Ambient lighting, Dynamat, Ugraded Speakers / Amps etc..........ridiculously over priced Nissan Strut Caps


User avatar
CR4ZYHORSE
Posts: 1886
Joined: Mon Mar 18, 2013 8:34 pm

How To Replace Your Air Conditioning Condenser

Post by CR4ZYHORSE » Sat Jun 28, 2014 8:21 am

A perfect example of the value of a forum like this and it's thoughtful members sharing their projects.

Excellent guide

"I need your Clothes, your Boots and your Nissan Juke"


Post Reply

Return to “Faults and Fixes”