How cold should a car AC blow?

I think my air conditioner is dying, but I’m not sure. The air it is pumping is cool, just not cold. How cold should my car AC blow?

Differentiating between cool and cold can be challenging. But don’t fret—there is an easy way to see if your car’s air conditioner is on the outs. All you need is a thermometer.
Just follow these easy steps:
  • Park your car in the shade.
  • Roll up all of the windows.
  • Set the temperature to max cold.
  • Let the car run for 10 minutes, longer if it is a hot day.
  • Open up the front air vents and use the thermometer to test the air temperature.
Anything under 45 degrees Fahrenheit is a well-working air conditioner. If your temperature is higher than that, have a local mechanic do an AC maintenance check on your car. You might just need some more coolant added to the system.
If you learn that your AC is broken, check your car insurance policy and car warranty paperwork. The AC is usually a covered claim under mechanical breakdown insurance.
Also, if you are concerned about other parts of your vehicle breaking down, make sure to have a reliable roadside assistance package. Don’t have one? Try a roadside assistance membership with Jerry. Benefits include jumpstarts, lockout service, key replacement, towing, and more—for as low as $4.16 a month.
Shannon Martin
Answered on Nov 05, 2021
Shannon is an expert in personal lines liability insurance with 13 + years of insurance industry experience. She also served as a special insurance liaison to AARP members for 6 of those years. She is a graduate of UL Lafayette and currently resides in NY with her family. Shannon is also an amateur juggler, ukulele player, and is a time travel paradox theory enthusiast.

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