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Discussion Starter #1
HI,
I have 2009 Rav4, I bought it new.
AC light on the knob is on but AC does not turn on.
It's actually intermittent (1 out of 4 times it would turn on).
The AC line pressure was very low so my mechanic filled it up.
I have checked battery connector to make sure it's solid contact.
No other issues.
My mechanic already checked for fuse etc.
Since it's intermittent it's either compressor or some connection is not secure.
When it does turn on AC is nice and cold.
Any recommendations on the next step?

Thanks,
Robert
 

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2008 RAV4 Limited V6
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It could be a problem with the refrigerant flow sensor. Some have reported that attaching a magnet to it is a temporary fix. There are several threads about it on here, but at the moment I can't seem to get the search feature to work.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you everyone. I will check out the relay.
I did hook up OBD-II scanner and did not see any codes.
 

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I did hook up OBD-II scanner and did not see any codes.
An OBD-II scanner only shows emission related codes. You need an All-codes scanner for the non-emission systems.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks. I don't have all-codes scanner.
So I went to Toyota parts and asked the guy for magnetic clutch relay.
He printed diagram and gave me but I remember the picture (see), that in 2009 there is no clutch relay in the engine bay (Even though fuse box cover says so). He didn't know where it would be either.

So I am left with.
1. Find the relay location and change it.
2. Find some compressor sensor (I read some threads).
3. Find the leak (When mechanic filled the Freon it worked intermittently for 2 days).
I still have AC/PRO with gauge it shows low pressure and not filling the gas.

BTW:FYI the car has only 48K miles because wife drove it only around town (less than 2 mile commute) and she rarely ever used AC. So there might be a leak big enough that when mechanic filled it, it worked few times.


154633


154634
 

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Next time when the ac does not work put magnets on the flow sensor. If this works then you need to replace the flow sensor. This thread shows where it is. It is worth a shot since it is the easier to check rather than checking all the other stuff.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Next time when the ac does not work put magnets on the flow sensor. If this works then you need to replace the flow sensor. This thread shows where it is. It is worth a shot since it is the easier to check rather than checking all the other stuff.
Thank you for the thread link. I have ordered the flow sensor. It looks like a pain to replace but beats spending $ on a new compressor.
 

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The only way to know for sure is to check it with techstream.
You can find them on eBay , Amazon and other online places.

 

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Discussion Starter #11
Next time when the ac does not work put magnets on the flow sensor. If this works then you need to replace the flow sensor. This thread shows where it is. It is worth a shot since it is the easier to check rather than checking all the other stuff.
This afternoon I used my magnetic picker and put it right on top of the sensor and boom.. .AC works.
Just have to get the new flow sensor and tie it to AC line...
The magnetic trick to verify was very helpful.

Thanks,
Robert
154673
IMG_8156.JPG
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thank you for this thread. The picture he posted clearly shows where to tie the new sensor...
 

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Read post number one in this thread. It seems to be the easiest way to change the flow sensor without talking alot of things apart.

 

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Folks, this thread saved me lots of money. A $16 part fixed my AC problem. I have step by step instructions that might help the next person. The process is much simpler than it looks. However there is not much room and it's usually one hand operation to get to old sensor. It took me less than 1/2 hour to do this (probably longer because I was taking pictures :) )
(see pictures with step # in the text).

Step 1 Remove plastic covering above radiator. There are 6 or 8 round plastic push type fasteners. Use flat head screw to pull them up. Two in the middle have round circular tip (Just push the pin down and pop up the fastner).
154868

Step 2 Remove two brackets holding the radiator tank. 12 mm bolts and once you remove the brackets will lift up.
This allows you to push the radiator just a little forward so you can see better. You may NOT have to remove these but I did it for easy access.

154869


154870


154871



Here's the picture to show where the sensor is. It's right next to one of the AC line going into the compressor.
154872


Another picture to show the sensor.
154874


STEP 3 - soak the sensor with PB Blaster or similar lubricant. Let it soak for 5-15 minutes. Use flat head screw driver to push the tab up. With one hand you can reach down and push on the tab. I just wiggled the connector with long screw driver and then pushed it down to remove it from the sensor.
154873


STEP 4 - Wiring connector removed from the sensor.

154875


STEP 5 - Attach new sensor to the wiring connector. It's a one hand operation :) Hold the wiring between your fingers and push the sensor using your palm into it :)
Next loop around long zip tie around the hose/AC line at the top of the radiator. There is not much room to play around near compressor. If you get zip tie ready to just pull the end to tighten it then operation is simple.

154876


STEP 5A - Secure the new sensor to the AC line. I used two zip ties. One below sensor near wiring and one right on top of the sensor. Two zip ties make sure it is very secure and it won't slide down.
154877


Step 6 - re-attach radiator brackets with 12mm bolts.
Step 7 - Re-attach plastic covering on top of the radiator.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
This is the sensor I ordered for 2009 RAV-4 (4 cyl).

Last picture, fully secured new sensor.
And yes AC now works fine....

154878
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I am curious, what exactly does the sensor do?
Is it detecting refrigerant liquid flow?
When I did not have the new sensor attached to the coolant line AC still worked.
So what is it supposed to do? Turn OFF compressor when no flow is detected?

Thanks
Robert
 

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Good write up. Such an inexpensive part to replace which many may not know about instead of replacing the entire ac compressor.
 

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Folks, this thread saved me lots of money. A $16 part fixed my AC problem. I have step by step instructions that might help the next person. The process is much simpler than it looks. However there is not much room and it's usually one hand operation to get to old sensor. It took me less than 1/2 hour to do this (probably longer because I was taking pictures :) )
(see pictures with step # in the text).

Step 1 Remove plastic covering above radiator. There are 6 or 8 round plastic push type fasteners. Use flat head screw to pull them up. Two in the middle have round circular tip (Just push the pin down and pop up the fastner).
View attachment 154868
Step 2 Remove two brackets holding the radiator tank. 12 mm bolts and once you remove the brackets will lift up.
This allows you to push the radiator just a little forward so you can see better. You may NOT have to remove these but I did it for easy access.

View attachment 154869

View attachment 154870

View attachment 154871


Here's the picture to show where the sensor is. It's right next to one of the AC line going into the compressor.
View attachment 154872

Another picture to show the sensor.
View attachment 154874

STEP 3 - soak the sensor with PB Blaster or similar lubricant. Let it soak for 5-15 minutes. Use flat head screw driver to push the tab up. With one hand you can reach down and push on the tab. I just wiggled the connector with long screw driver and then pushed it down to remove it from the sensor.
View attachment 154873

STEP 4 - Wiring connector removed from the sensor.

View attachment 154875

STEP 5 - Attach new sensor to the wiring connector. It's a one hand operation :) Hold the wiring between your fingers and push the sensor using your palm into it :)
Next loop around long zip tie around the hose/AC line at the top of the radiator. There is not much room to play around near compressor. If you get zip tie ready to just pull the end to tighten it then operation is simple.

View attachment 154876

STEP 5A - Secure the new sensor to the AC line. I used two zip ties. One below sensor near wiring and one right on top of the sensor. Two zip ties make sure it is very secure and it won't slide down.
View attachment 154877

Step 6 - re-attach radiator brackets with 12mm bolts.
Step 7 - Re-attach plastic covering on top of the radiator.
Folks, this thread saved me lots of money. A $16 part fixed my AC problem. I have step by step instructions that might help the next person. The process is much simpler than it looks. However there is not much room and it's usually one hand operation to get to old sensor. It took me less than 1/2 hour to do this (probably longer because I was taking pictures :) )
(see pictures with step # in the text).

Step 1 Remove plastic covering above radiator. There are 6 or 8 round plastic push type fasteners. Use flat head screw to pull them up. Two in the middle have round circular tip (Just push the pin down and pop up the fastner).
View attachment 154868
Step 2 Remove two brackets holding the radiator tank. 12 mm bolts and once you remove the brackets will lift up.
This allows you to push the radiator just a little forward so you can see better. You may NOT have to remove these but I did it for easy access.

View attachment 154869

View attachment 154870

View attachment 154871


Here's the picture to show where the sensor is. It's right next to one of the AC line going into the compressor.
View attachment 154872

Another picture to show the sensor.
View attachment 154874

STEP 3 - soak the sensor with PB Blaster or similar lubricant. Let it soak for 5-15 minutes. Use flat head screw driver to push the tab up. With one hand you can reach down and push on the tab. I just wiggled the connector with long screw driver and then pushed it down to remove it from the sensor.
View attachment 154873

STEP 4 - Wiring connector removed from the sensor.

View attachment 154875

STEP 5 - Attach new sensor to the wiring connector. It's a one hand operation :) Hold the wiring between your fingers and push the sensor using your palm into it :)
Next loop around long zip tie around the hose/AC line at the top of the radiator. There is not much room to play around near compressor. If you get zip tie ready to just pull the end to tighten it then operation is simple.

View attachment 154876

STEP 5A - Secure the new sensor to the AC line. I used two zip ties. One below sensor near wiring and one right on top of the sensor. Two zip ties make sure it is very secure and it won't slide down.
View attachment 154877

Step 6 - re-attach radiator brackets with 12mm bolts.
Step 7 - Re-attach plastic covering on top of the radiator.

Nice step by step to help others
 
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