I need your opinions and advice. I have a 1994 Ford Taurus 3.8L V6 with
138,000 miles on it. I was driving it today and I started smelling a burning
odor (like when some applies the brakes really really hard - graphite type
odor). I pulled over and there was some smoke coming from the ac compressor
area. I got the car home, and the ac pulley seems wobbly and is making a
The serpentine belt has a crack in it that I discovered after the smell and
seeing the smoke. The car doesn't smoke if I keep the heater and/or ac off.
But the ac pulley is definitely wobbling and is making a noise clunking
Do you think it is the ac compressor or the clutch? Would it be better just
to have the ac compressor pulled and have a motormite ac bypass pulley
installed with a new belt?
If the noise/smoke happens when you turn on the AC but goes away with it off,
compressor is smoked. If it's quiet with the system is off then the pulley and
are ok, just unplug the connector for the cycling switch on the accumulator (AC
near the passenger side firewall or unplug the connector from the clutch coil.
will keep it from engaging. No real need for the bypass pulley.
It's most likely the ball bearings for the AC Compressor pulley -
there are separate bearings so the pulley can spin freely on the nose
of the compressor when the air is off. The pulley is hollow so the
clutch electromagnet coil rides inside it, and it pulls the clutch
plate into the front of the pulley to engage the air conditioner
It goes together in a multi-layered stack, kind of like those
Russian Nesting Dolls. Ingenious design work.
You can buy a replacement idler pulley that comes with a new ball
bearing, they are fairly easy to swap out. Except on an E-250 Van
where the AC compressor is buried at the very bottom of the engine,
and you do it all on a creeper and have to invent a puller tool to get
the old pulley off with limited space to work - DAMHIKT.
Replace the AC clutch plate at the same time, and now both mating
parts are new. And it sounds like you are due for a new drive belt
also. If the magnet coil works, leave it alone.
--<< Bruce >>--
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