Oldsmobile Cutlass Air Conditioner Not Blowing Cold Air

Reader Question
Hi Austin,

I have been having recent problems with Air Conditioning in my 1986 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme. Last week, the air conditioning stopped working. Air still flows out of the vents, but the air is warm (around the same temperature as the ‘vent’ setting).

Usually when I switch from ventilation mode to air conditioning, I am able to hear the compressor click and turn on. The engine also revs up. I no longer observe this.

Obviously the compressor isn’t working. How do I debug the cause of this problem? I am concerned the compressor may be good, and that it may be an electrical problem as I fiddling with the instrument panel to replace a light bulb before this occurred.


Hey Eric,

The very first thing you should do is have your mechanic check the Freon level and pressures in the a/c system. If the system is low on Freon, the compressor will not come on….and you won’t have cold air out the vents.

Rule out the possibility of a Freon leak, then look into the
electrical side of the a/c system like the interior switch or control head, compressor relay, compressor clutch etc. etc.

Austin C. Davis

Reader Follow up

Thank you for your response to my AC problem. I got it fixed at a local AC/Radiator shop. Turns out there was a leak in the condenser, and it needed to be replaced. R12 is certainly getting more expensive these days!

Posted in: A/C and Heating

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