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Hello,

I bought my 2008 Versa used and have had it for about a year and a half. Just recently I noticed my engine was clunking while idle, but only when the AC was on. I looked t up and think it might be the compressor. I live in Southern California so it's going to get very hot soon. I would like to have AC during the summer.So, is this the compressor? How much does it cost to replace? Can I use the AC or will it damage the whole system if the compressor is stressed too much?

I appreciate any input on this issue.
 

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Can't say for certain, but it might be normal. A compressor may not run continuously depending on the conditions and factors, and my AC "clunks" when the compressor kicks on and off as you say, on a new car I've put only 6000 miles on it. I suspect the issue is just that because the engine is so very small with so little displacement it feels the sudden strain of that AC compressor kicking in and turning over hard and the effect is felt more in this car because the engine is not big enough and not enough rotating mass to smoothly shrug off the suddenly added load.

This is probably why Honda chose to do an electrically driven AC compressor in our 1.5 liter turbo four rather than coupling it to the engine crankshaft via a belt. That 1.5 makes a lot of power under boost at high RPM but at idle and low speed cruise not so much.

Now if you think the noise is excessive, might be something to get checked out but if the AC works and its not throwing the belt off you may be fine. This is just my 2 cents.
 

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It can be the front drive plate on compressor has lost its' shock absorbers. Or the serp belt has something errant in the belt run like belt tensioner or a pulley that then rattles or clunks with a/c on, a/c loads them down more and then the noise.

I'd be getting it looked at quick, if the compressor is going that's no little thing, let it tear up and the damage cost goes up at the very least 5X if not more. That kind of damage can easy go $2K and more.

It may well only be the occasional clunk of normal a/c kicking on once in a while if not real often. They can do that too when they get older and still be OK.
 

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If you hear your belt squealing one day turn off your AC. :nerd:

Can you look under the hood at the ac pump while its running? The guys have already covered all the possibilities. Either something is loose or needs replacing. Adding oil to your ac wont help a noise any more than adding oil to a knocking engine.
 

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You do NOT want to add oil to ANY a/c without solid proof of the need as it leads to major cooling issues QUICK. I watched that all day long when I was in parts.

The problem is this..................the oil ratio is VERY tight in a/c systems, just enough to keep parts lubed and running but any extra at all takes up needed refrigerant space and tilts the cooling to be less very quickly. When you leak oil out of a system the difficulty is in telling how much EXACTLY you need and almost impossible without removing parts to check it.
 
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