I have a 2003 Escape. It has a "feature" according to Ford of partially
shutting off the air conditioning when going up a steep hill or when the
ambient temperature is too low. It seems to me that if the ambient
temperature is below about 75 in the shade (even if I'm in the sun), the AC
I'm sick of this ambient temperature aspect. (The steep grade thing really
isn't too bad and I do understand the purpose). The Ford dealer says its a
"feature" and that they cannot do anything.
Anybody know of a way to adjust or bypass the ambient temperature issue?
I'd suspect that you have lost some refrigerant. AFAIK, the only thing that
would shut off the A/C is the low pressure switch. Of course, the lower the
temperature, the lower the pressure, and the switch cuts off the compressor
to keep from damaging it.
If you lose refrigerant, you have low pressure, too, but not from low
temperatures, only from low volume of refrigerant.
I agree with CJB- I think you may have a low charge. I have a 2002 Escape,
and the manual says the AC will work in all modes (AC or defrost) as long as
the outside air is 43 degrees F. or more.
[This followup was posted to alt.autos.ford and a copy was sent to the
Typically, it should only be shut off in temps below about 40-45F, or
near-full to full-throttle conditions. If it's not cooling during more
normal use, then either there is a low refrigerent problem, temperature
blend door issue, dirty cabin air filter (if it has one), plugged up
evaporator (what cools the air in the car), or condenser (in front of
If there is a no_junk in my address, please REMOVE it before replying!
All junk mail senders will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the
Your A/C not working at 75 degrees is a fault, not a
feature. The PCM shuts off the compressor when the load on
the engine is high (like going up a steep hill). The low
side pressure switch cuts off the compressor when the
ambient temperature is low - but 75 F is not "low" in this
application. Most likely you have a low refrigerant (Suva)
charge. When the A/C is properly charged you can't bypass
the ambient low ambient temperature "feature." It is the
nature of the refrigerant used that the AC won't be
effective at low temperatures. But 75 degrees is not low.
Fred Harper wrote:
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