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A/C compressor question

4750 Views 18 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  indyflick
As you can well imagine, living in Tucson, the A/C spends a lot of time running. In fact, my battery guess-o-meter said 32 miles this morning, primarily due to the heat.

My question is more curiosity than need-to-know, but I've listened to the compressor many, many times and it sounds like it is a variable speed unit. I did some searching on this forum and learned that the compressor is A/C (alternating current), 3-phase, and 300 volts. But, I did not find an answer as to whether it is multi speed or variable speed.

My home A/C compressor is multi speed, so I'm familiar with that as the two different speeds are very distinctive. The Volt, however, certainly sounds like a variable speed unit. Just curious if anyone knows for sure.

I was certainly pleased to read in my searching that the A/C compressor is considered part of the Voltec system and is covered under the powertrain warranty. Another big plus for the Volt, and for GM.
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If I'm reading this right, it is inferring that the compressor motor is a single speed and a slipping clutch adjusts the actual compressor speed. Is that right? Or am I reading too much into the scan tool info?
That would be grossly inefficient and unreliable, with no benefits that I can see. As far as I know, we have a purely electric compressor that's permanently connected to a drive motor - just like your average refrigerator or home air conditioner. This means you don't need any seals on sliding shafts in the compressor, which is where they generally leak.
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