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I have a 2000 Intrepid ES with the 3.2. Recently I had to replace the A/C belt because I figured it was getting too hot out. It had been sitting like that for about 4 months and the system needed to be charged up. Once that was taken care of the air was blasting nice and cold.

Unfortunately, I started to notice an intermittent vibration while the engine would idle. It felt kinda like a Cessna inside the cab. 3 Days later while I was driving down the highway I started noticing the vibration. If I turned the car off and then started it back up quickly, the vibration went away. It also didn't seem to follow the RPMs of the motor. All of a sudden I lost my A/C and I thought "Oh great, compressor locked up and I lost the belt". When I got home I opened the hood and that wasn't the case at all. The belt is still on there. Now, however, the clutch doesn't seem to want to engage. I went out today and hooked a wire from ground and from the battery jumper to the compressor connector and it didn't engage manually. I didn't get a chance to try a test-light on it to see if there was continuity though.

Something else weird has started happening. When the car is hot I'm starting to get a different type of vibration while the engine idles sometimes. It's not such a rhythmic vibration as the first one, but it's like the whole engine is running really rough. When I look under the hood I notice the top water hose and the whole radiator are vibrating violently. When I stop the car and immediately restart it, all is fine again. I can't tell exactly where the vibration is coming from and it's really strange that it's intermittent like that. The compressor clutch isn't engaging or anything because I've had this happen with the a/c completely off.


Does anyone have any clue as to what could be going on? I'm thinking I probably have to replace the A/C clutch at this point, how hard is this for this car? I've got pullers and what-not. Also, I'm wondering if I should change the water pump and timing belt now, since I've hit 90,000 miles.


Thanks all

Jeff
 

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While I'm not 100% sure that the A/C clutch is the same as the 1Gs the FSM has the same instruction set so I'm guessing they are. The A/C clutch isn't too bad IF you can reuse the same shims (as I did). You have to dismount the compressor but you can leave the system charged. Then set the compressor on end - with the clutch pointing up - and remove the retainer, pulley, and clutch (and watch out for those shims!). Then put the new clutch on and re-assemble. Clutch ran me ~$80 at the parts store. Don't bother with the dealer, they only carry the compressor assembly ...
 

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I am willing to bet that the vibration is being caused one of your cooling fans going bad. (most likely the pass. side fan) The reason your A/C isn't turning on is because your fan seized causing the 30 amp radiator fan fuse to blow. This fuse is located in the power dist. box under the hood. The computer senses the blown fuse so it will not allow the A/C to come on to prevent overheating. What you have to do is disconnect the siezed fan and then replace the blown fuse. Do not replace the fuse first cause it will just blow again almost instantly. Once you have that bad fan disconnected and a new fuse installed your A/C will work again. I would get that fan replaced ASAP because you car is designed to run on 2 fans and may start to run hot with only one. (Just take a look at the fan, see if it's misaligned and with the car OFF try to manually spin the blades - if they are locked up you know you have a seized fan.)
 
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