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Old 04-09-2019, 10:18 PM   #1
Ciridean
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2001 L-Series 2.2L Sedan
Default Voltage problem:Security light on, gauges drop AC blows warm

Hi Guys: Both the security light and service lights are on:
1. The gauges drop the idle slows and fuel is slowed at idle
2. The AC switches off and blows warm
At first, I thought it was an AC problem because the system would blow cold then the clutch would cycle off and it would blow warm, and the idle would dip and the gauges such as temperature would drop, but then come back up again momentarily. So we purged the system and recharged. Blows cold and then shuts off again. So we accomplished nothing except established that the system is full.
So then my friend thought that was just the idle adjusting to the AC going on and off. However it does it with the AC off also, and also does it with the car off but the ignition on. I noticed this while installing some speakers.
After poking around in there I did notice that there were some loose wires close to the low side AC pressure sensor but nothing within range of those wires are not connected.
I'm pretty sure it is a voltage problem and due to the low voltage the AC kicks off and the power dips and the fuel is interrupted momentarily.
Does anyone have any ideas? Many thanks.
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Old 04-09-2019, 11:58 PM   #2
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2003 L-Series 3.0L Sedan
Default Re: Voltage problem:Security light on, gauges drop AC blows warm

You're describing at least two different issues. One is idle rpm dropping and the other is possibly incorrect refilling of the ac system. A third problem is security staying ON. Security isn't an issue here.

Without running ac and idle dropping may be one of several issues; worn spark plugs, low compression, dead/dying battery loading down the alternator, alternator worn out, belt drive system loose, dirty throttle body, air filter clogged, oil and filter not changed, etc. Try testing the easiest things first like battery, cables, cable connections, dirty throttle, alternator output (>13 volts@idle and above), drive belt and tension. The ac system is handled differently and separate from an engine running problem. Keep in mind ac problems are separate from engine problems.

All ac systems that are repaired are always evacuated of all air and moisture first. Evacuating a system ensures a complete vacuum holds for several minutes to guarantee a leak won't allow air and moisture back into this repaired system. If a vacuum doesn't hold after shutting off the vacuum pump then refilling with refrigerant is a waste of time and money as a leak detected at the vacuum level will most likely result in refrigerant leaking out sooner or later. The goal of any ac repair is to seal the system as it came from the factory using new O-rings where necessary and proper repair techniques to have a perfect seal. Schrader valves may leak and should be replaced too. The caps should have O-rings to seal the service valves when finger tightened. Once a perfect vacuum holds, refilling with the specified amount of r134a is installed along with any make up oil. When done correctly, repairs restore ac back to factory condition. The engine computer automatically adjusts for compressor loads to bump idle rpm to the same or higher rpm.

The security light remaining ON is indicating GMs factory Passlock anti theft system failed. When the bcm detects an internal failure with Passlock, it disables Passlock from interfering with starting the engine and driving by turning on the security light. No more anti theft system, anyone with a key to turn ignition on can drive away. Was this car modified like a white wire of the three wire connectors to the Passlock sensor on the steering column?

When Passlock is enabled and active with a fast flashing security light, injectors are disabled to prevent the engine from running. Starting can occur but without injectors operating, the engine simply turns over without firing up.

Last edited by fdryer; 04-10-2019 at 12:06 AM..

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Old 04-10-2019, 12:30 AM   #3
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2003 L-Series 3.0L Sedan
Default Re: Voltage problem:Security light on, gauges drop AC blows warm

If a repaired ac system isn't evacuated prior to refilling with refrigerant, air and moisture contaminates a system and can raise operating pressures higher than expected. Higher operating pressures can overload the compressor clutch, overheat and burn out the thermal fuse built into every clutch coil. The higher operating pressures create higher condenser coil temperatures to cycle the cooling fan(s) more frequently. If excessively high pressures are generated (>450 psi), one of two pressure sensors triggers. A transducer measures low and high pressures to send a compressor disable signal to the engine computer to disable ac operation until pressures subsides. A mechanical pressure relief valve mounted on the compressor will relieve pressures above 525 psi. Normal operating pressures; 28-35 psi on the low side, 125-250+psi on the high side in hot and humid temperatures. AC repairs are unforgiving of mistakes.

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Old 05-19-2019, 09:22 AM   #4
Ciridean
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2001 L-Series 2.2L Sedan
Default Re: Voltage problem:Security light on, gauges drop AC blows warm

Firstly not sure if I officially thanked you last time or not? So Thank-You/ You put a lot of effort into these replies. You are correct I am describing multiple problems here.
How about just the AC problem. As mentioned I believe the system is correctly filled etc..When you turn on the AC the compressor kicks on, and blows cold then within 4 seconds or so it shuts off, you can actually see it cycle off and then, of course, blows warm.
I tested the battery and it was showing 14.8 volts while running, with the AC and radio on it only dropped down to approx 14.3 to 14.5 volts so the alternator is charging well.
The horn relay was swapped out for the alternator relay as they are the same one as this is a quick way of testing the alternator relay, I was told but they were both good.
So I am back to square one, the AC compressor shuts down momentarily after turning it on?

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Old 05-19-2019, 12:04 PM   #5
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Default Re: Voltage problem:Security light on, gauges drop AC blows warm

No thanks necessary as you haven't found a solution to each problem. Going over your predicament, when you replaced or repaired speakers and wiring, did you make modifications to wiring, added an amp? Custom wiring interfering with stock wiring can sometimes result in unanticipated problems. Was security on before these problems occurred? Saturn warns against custom wiring changes that may crate issues and void a new car warranty. Even with an out of warranty car, any electrical mods not done carefully may cause electrical/electronic issues where mystery problems pop up out of nowhere.

Addressing ac alone, when you purged the system of refrigerant, did you use an electric vacuum pump? Failure to evacuate a system can lead to unanticipated issues from anyone unfamiliar with refrigeration. Every refrigeration system requires evacuation to have as close to near absolute vacuum before filling with refrigerant. Skipping an evacuation simply allows incorrect operating pressures that can create unusual problems. Despite some here claiming this isn't necessary, I cannot continue with tried and true practices being ignored to support short cuts. Restoring ac function requires following all procedures in order to bring ac back to factory condition, the goal of every ac repair. I do it on every ac repair to avoid operating problems down the road. Skipping/short cut procedures results in; periodic topping off a system from a leak never addressed, under or over filing to create inadequate cooling, system cycling when Saturn ac systems run compressors without cycling, etc. Never using a set of refrigeration gauges is another short cut preventing monitoring low and high side during evacuation and refilling systems to ensure correct operating pressures in relation to interior vent temperatures are correct. Correlating operating pressures and temperatures are compared to service manual charts. The given operating pressures aren't guesses but derived from general operating conditions as a ball park set of values before using ac charts for make and model.

Last edited by fdryer; 05-19-2019 at 12:11 PM..

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