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AC Control Switch Replacement Cost Estimate

Worried you might overpay for your AC control switch replacement? Use Jerry's GarageGuard™ to get fair cost estimates for your AC control switch replacement.
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John Davis
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Reviewed by Kathleen Flear, Director of Content
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Edited by Jessica Barrett, Senior Car & Insurance Editor

How much does an AC control switch replacement cost?

The average total cost for an AC control switch replacement is $219, including $128 for parts and $91 for labor. The exact price will depend on your vehicle’s year and model.
The total parts cost includes a replacement AC control switch but may extend to a new AC condenser, compressor, or evaporator core as well. As for the labor cost, it takes around 0.8 hours for a certified mechanic to inspect your vehicle, determine whether a repair is necessary, and then perform the AC control switch replacement. 
Here’s how much you’ll pay for a new AC control switch for some popular vehicle models:
Estimate DateCustomerCarFair Cost EstimateParts CostLabor CostLabor Time
May 25, 2024
Toyota Corolla
$325
$169
$156
1.4 Hours
May 22, 2024
Ford Fiesta
$264
$91
$174
1.4 Hours
May 21, 2024
Porsche Cayman
$333
$169
$164
1.4 Hours
May 20, 2024
GMC Sierra 3500
$267
$91
$176
1.4 Hours
May 17, 2024
Buick Regal
$252
$77
$175
1.4 Hours
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How did we estimate these prices?

Jerry's experts researched and collected data from 2500+ real repair shops in all 50 states in the US, including everything from the total cost of repair services to the hourly labor cost for mechanic labor in each shop. We combined that data with our expert database of hundreds of real repair jobs, thousands of real cars, millions of real car part prices in order to best estimate the cost of each repair service. Our labor cost estimate is calculated by taking the average hourly labor rate for a certified mechanic in the US, times the number of hours it takes on average to complete a repair. We recommend you compare your local shops with Jerry and contact those shops directly to get final pricing for your vehicle.

What parts do you need for an AC control switch replacement?

Your car’s AC consists of a condenser, an expansion valve, an evaporator core, and a compressor, among other parts. A loop of pressurized refrigerant connects every part of the system. When the refrigerant is at its coldest (around the evaporator), it absorbs the moisture from the air headed into the cabin; when it’s at its warmest, it’s already on its way back to the compressor and condenser.
If your AC unit is on the fritz, the total parts bill could include:
  1. Replacement air conditioning control switch ($10-$860): If you want to cool your car’s cabin, you’ll either flick a switch, turn a knob, or press a button. This mechanical piece activates the vehicle’s air conditioning, and in some cars, it’s integrated into a control panel.
  2. New
    air conditioning condenser
    ($70-$880): The condenser looks like a miniature radiator. The warm, liquid refrigerant passing through its coils sheds its heat against the outside air before moving through the expansion valve or orifice tube. 
  3. A new
    air conditioning expansion valve or orifice tube
    ($2-$270): The AC expansion valve (or orifice tube) removes pressure from the cool, liquid refrigerant before it passes to the evaporator.
  4. A replacement air conditioning evaporator core ($2-$415): Relieved of pressure, the cooled refrigerant can now expand into a gas and absorb all the heat from the air passing through the evaporator on its way to the vents in the cabin.
  5. A new
    air conditioning compressor relay
    ($30-$4,100): At its last stop in the cycle, the warm cloud of refrigerant flows into the compressor to be pressurized and forced back into a liquid state. 
Keep in mind: Fixing your vehicle’s AC might call for a new AC condenser, expansion valve (or orifice tube), evaporator core, and compressor relay.
Top brands for AC control switches include ACDelco, Standard Motor Products, and Motorcraft. When shopping for AC condensers and evaporator cores, look for TYC and Spectra Premium. For expansion valves or orifice tubes, search for ACDelco and UAC. Finally, for AC compressor relays, brands known for their reliability include Standard Motor Products and Bosch. You can purchase all these parts for your car from retailers such as AutoZone, Amazon, and Advance Auto Parts.
Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) parts cost more than aftermarket parts, but they often include better warranties. For example, a new genuine Toyota AC control switch includes a 24-month/25,000-mile warranty if it’s installed by a certified Toyota mechanic. That being said, some aftermarket performance parts manufacturers offer just as much, if not more, quality as OEM parts.
You can buy replacement parts at automotive body shops, parts shops, dealerships, or online stores like Amazon, AutoZone, and Advance Auto Parts. If you prefer OEM parts, you can also try your vehicle manufacturer’s official website. Honda, Ford, and just about every other car maker sell OEM parts online. Check your owner’s manual for any crucial specifications so you don’t buy the wrong part.

Where can I get my AC control switch replaced?

You can’t budget using dollar signs and stars, so why should you shop that way? Download Jerry's
GarageGuard™
app for all the fair pricing estimates you want but didn’t think you could get. 
Jerry's GarageGuard™ connects you with a network of over 2,500 vetted car repair shops across the country. View installation costs—including real hourly labor rates and diagnostics fees—before you make your decision, or browse verified user reviews to find a top-rated experience.
Download the app to find affordable repair services from vetted shops like the ones below!
177 Reviews
54th Street Auto Center
address
415 W 54th St, New York, NY
AC Control Switch Replacement Cost
Fair Cost Estimate for This Shop
$242
(Parts - $81, Labor - $161)
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$191
174 Reviews
Yoo's Auto Service & Collision
address
189 W Duncannon Ave, Philadelphia, PA
AC Control Switch Replacement Cost
Fair Cost Estimate for This Shop
$166
(Parts - $81, Labor - $85)
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$100
154 Reviews
61 Auto Center
address
1226 Centre Ave, Reading, PA
AC Control Switch Replacement Cost
Fair Cost Estimate for This Shop
$131
(Parts - $81, Labor - $50)
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$70
176 Reviews
Z Auto Service LLC
address
1231 W Lehigh Pl, Englewood, CO
AC Control Switch Replacement Cost
Fair Cost Estimate for This Shop
$216
(Parts - $81, Labor - $135)
Shop Diagnostic Fee
(Included in service charges)
$150
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How did we vet these shops?

Jerry experts researched 2500+ real repair shops across the US. We talked to real shop customers, and analyzed both real shop pricing data and thousands of real customer reviews from each shop to verify them individually. We do not partner with the shops listed above, and our analysis is always unbiased.

How will a mechanic do an AC control switch replacement?

A mechanic will follow these steps when replacing your AC control switch:
  1. Remove the AC control panel from the center of the dash
  2. Remove the defective AC control switch from the control panel
  3. Install the new AC control switch into the AC control panel
  4. Reinstall the AC control panel into the center of the dash
  5. Add fresh refrigerant, clean the condenser, or install a new air filter (if your car has an HVAC system)
  6. Test the new unit and the airflow to verify it’s working properly
While you’re at the garage, ask your mechanic to perform a full inspection and tune-up of your car’s AC. They could find other malfunctioning electronics (like the capacitor, control board, and fan motor) and troubleshoot major components like the condenser unit. Better to get a blower motor or compressor replacement on the spot than have to revisit the garage later!

What happens when an AC switch goes bad?

Switches control the air conditioning, and a working AC is hardly necessary for driving. However, if your AC gets stuck in the on position, it may wear itself out without a break. If it gets stuck off, grime and gunk could build up while the system is inactive.

What is an AC control switch replacement?

An AC control switch replacement is a simple service intended to give control of the air conditioning back to the driver. 
An air conditioning system is about more than keeping the thermostat low—it’s also necessary to defrost the windshield during cold weather. With a faulty AC switch, you could be left driving blind.
Like any piece of high-touch electronic equipment, AC control switches can fail over time due to wear and tear. If your air conditioning system stops working, it’s time to go to the mechanic for a replacement.

How do I know if my car's AC switch is bad?

If your vehicle is suffering from spotty air conditioning or if the AC system won’t turn on at all, you may have an AC control switch problem. A skilled mechanic can identify whether a faulty control switch and/or a different mechanism is to blame.

How long does a car AC control switch last?

A car’s AC control switch is supposed to last the lifetime of the vehicle. Dashboard controls are generally expected to last much longer than the parts they control since they're not subject to as much wear and tear. These estimates may be affected by maintenance issues or unexpected problems (like dropping coffee on the center console).

Can I replace my car’s AC control switch myself?

Unless you’re an experienced electrician, it’s wise to leave an AC control switch replacement to the professionals. While mechanically simple, the bulk of the labor (and the potential for mistakes) involvesw3 the wiring. Make a mistake and your DIY job could result in far more damage than what you started with.

FAQs

Wear, moisture, a power surge, damage to the dashboard, or a loose wire could cause an AC control switch to go bad. Clean the vehicle cabin regularly to prevent dust or dirt from getting into the cracks on the control panel and wearing out the buttons. And if you need a
condenser fan motor replacement
, don’t wait to fix it; allowing warm air to build up inside your car’s AC can damage the other parts.
Some AC control switches light up to indicate that the vehicle’s cooling system is active. If the button doesn’t light up and the AC doesn’t turn on when you press it, the entire switch is probably broken. If the AC turns on, but there’s no button light, the switch bulb might need to be replaced, or the circuit board isn’t getting enough power.
Like many modern vehicular systems, your car’s air conditioning unit is controlled by a module and computer. Sometimes, resetting this module is as good as a miracle fix for your car’s AC. Check your owner’s manual for instructions, since resetting the cooling system varies from vehicle to vehicle.

Meet Our Experts

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John Davis
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Car Expert
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Certified mechanic with 10+ years of experience
John Davis is an expert automotive writer and former automotive mechanic. John's work spans multiple categories, and he relishes the opportunity to research a new subject and expand his area of expertise and industry knowledge. To date, John has written more than 200 articles covering car maintenance and care, car advice, how-to guides, and more.
Prior to joining Jerry’s editorial team, John worked as a mechanic and freelance writer, creating content for clients including HotCars and SetPower.
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Jessica Barrett
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Car Expert
Jessica Barrett is a senior insurance writer and editor with 10 years of experience in the automotive and travel industries. A specialist in car insurance, car loans, and car ownership, Jessica’s mission is to create comprehensive content that car owners can use to manage their costs and improve their lives. As a managing editor for a team of writers and insurance specialists, Jessica has edited over 2,000 articles for Jerry on topics ranging from local insurance shopping tips to refinancing car loans with bad credit.
Before joining Jerry as a senior content editor in 2021, Jessica created visual content for clients such as Expedia, Vivid Seats, Budget Direct Car Insurance, Angie’s List, and HomeAdvisor. Her content was published in Business Insider, Forbes, Apartment Therapy, and the BBC.
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Kathleen Flear
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Car Expert
Kathleen Flear is an expert insurance writer and editor who heads up Jerry’s editorial team as director of content. Kathleen empowers drivers to make smart car ownership decisions through  best-in-class articles on insurance, loans, and maintenance. Prior to joining Jerry in 2021, Kathleen served as managing editor for a team of SEO content marketing professionals at Article-Writing.co and worked as a freelance writer and editor for a range of digital publications, including Chicago Literati magazine and Golden Words. She earned a bachelor’s degree in English language and literature from Queen’s University, and a master’s degree in creative writing and fiction from Sierra Nevada University.
*The price information provided on our car repair webpages is intended for general informational purposes only. Actual prices for car repair services may vary based on various factors, including but not limited to the make and model of your vehicle, the extent of repair required, and the prevailing market conditions. All prices for real repair shops are estimations based on our research only. Therefore, the prices listed on our webpages should not be considered as final quotes or binding offers.