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Thread: A/C clutch dying after 30+ years, time for a new one.

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    Join Date
    Jun 2005
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    Default A/C clutch dying after 30+ years, time for a new one.

    So yesterday I was driving my Thunderbird with the A/C on, it was about 90* out, and it was working great. I went to pass someone and when I let off the throttle I noticed that the air from the vents was getting hotter. I pulled over and popped the hood. The A/C compressor was not engaged even with the ECC system set at 60*. Just for fun I tapped the front of the clutch with a screw driver handle. Sure enough the clutch popped in and the system started to blow cold air again. So I knew the clutch was either worn and had excessive gap or the coil is going bad. When I got home I checked the clutch to pulley gap. It's at .030, right on the high side. I decided to pop the clutch off to see if I could adjust the gap. I did so but found that there was only one thick spacer under the clutch. But looking at the clutch face I could see that it was worn. Also the pulley bearing was starting to have a rumbling feeling. I decided at that point that It's time for a new clutch assembly after 30+ years. I had a coupon for Advance Auto and was able to order a new clutch, pulley, and field coil (aka Air Conditioner clutch kit) for $50 shipped. It should be arriving early next week. So I'll be swapping that out and hopefully having fully fictional A/C again, that doesn't require a love tap from a screw driver.

    I'll take some pictures along the way, just in case anyone else wants to tackle the job.
    Last edited by thunderjet302; 07-05-2018 at 03:11 PM.
    '88 Thunderbird LX: 306, Edelbrock Performer heads, Comp 266HR cam, Edelbrock Performer RPM intake, Edelbrock 70mm TB, 76mm C&L MAF, 30lb injectors, 2.5" exhaust, AOD with 2800 PI converter, 8.8 with 3.73 gears, 31 spline Traction-Lok, 31 spline Moser axles, 04 Cobra front arms, Maximum Motorsports extreme duty rear arms, subframes.
    '11 Focus, '12 Mustang 3.7, '17 Accord EX-L V6

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