Why Front AC Not Working But Back Is and The Fixes

A car’s air conditioning system is susceptible to malfunction over time like other components. However, if you have a situation of front AC not working but back is, that must be a tricky challenge demanding critical analysis.

This challenge can be overwhelming when you can’t figure out what could be wrong. It can even result in unnecessary financial wastage if you suddenly replace components that are not necessarily the issue.

So, this article is a straightforward guide to help you ascertain the causes of the problem and how to fix them immediately.

What Cause Front AC Not Working But Back Is Blowing?

Air conditioner problems can range from the front AC in a car not working to a complete malfunction of the entire HVAC system. However, let’s consider one aspect of the problem, which is the common reason why a car’s front AC fails to work.

front ac not working but back is

Clogged AC vents

Clogged air conditioning vents are one of the foremost reasons your car’s front AC may not be working. The AC vents are designed with open spaces to allow cold air to flow through into the car. However, you can close or control the direction of the airflow.

With that being said, you or someone else may have mistakenly closed these components on the dashboard; hence, the AC not blowing out in front vents. Also, the vents may be clogged up with dust or dirt over time, and this can be the reason for the problem.

Leakage/low refrigerant

Your car’s air conditioning system works with refrigerant, which helps to circulate cold air through the cabin. Unfortunately, the refrigerant level can become low over time or due to leakage.

Therefore, when your car’s AC starts running on a low refrigerant level, it will be difficult to circulate the cold air flow properly. So, you will most likely experience a situation where the front AC blows cold, the rear AC blows hot, and vice versa.

Bad compressor

The refrigerant is designed to work in synergy with the compressor within the air conditioning system. Without the cooperation of this component, the refrigerant won’t be able to circulate cold air properly.

One of the common reasons a compressor may go bad is due to lack of constant usage. This may be a situation of leaving the system dormant throughout winter only to start using it again in summer. This can shock the system and damage it.

Faulty cooling fan

The condenser and the cooling fan also work in synergy within the air conditioning system. The condenser receives proper cooling from the fan to convert the high-pressure gas it receives from the compressor into liquid. This enables the air conditioner to produce cold air.

Therefore, if you have a faulty cooling fan, it will impact the condenser negatively and result in some sort of HVAC system malfunction. In some cases, this malfunction can result in your Acura MDX rear AC blowing hot air. In other cases, the front AC may stop working with only the back AC working.

How Do I Fix The Problems?

Proper diagnosis is the first step to fixing any of the problems above. Once you ascertain the exact reason why your Dodge Durango’s front AC is not working but back is, then you can proceed to fix the problem.

The following solutions will fix the problems outlined above. However, you must ensure that you apply the correct solution to the accurate problem to get your desired results.

Clean the AC vents

Firstly, take out time to inspect your car’s AC vents on the dashboard. If you discover dirt or dust build-up within the components, get a mixture of detergent and water solution and clean the vents with a foam paintbrush.

Ensure to prevent water from entering the vents directly; hence the need to ensure that the detergent and water solution form lather. After cleaning up the dust or dirt, carefully wipe the vents with a dry towel.

Seal refrigerant leakage

During your diagnosis to find out why your car’s front AC is not working, if you discover any leaking AC unit hose, ensure to seal it. If you are a DIYer, kindly get a good sealant at a car accessories or auto parts shop across the street. It will only cost a few bucks.

However, if you’re not sure about performing the task perfectly, kindly contact an expert auto technician to do the job. The sealant and labor costs will not affect your pocket so much.

Replace bad compressor

First of all, you must ensure that you prevent your car’s AC compressor from going bad. In order to do this, you must run the air conditioner on full blast at least once, around 15 minutes every three weeks. Do this without fail, irrespective of whether it is winter, spring, or summer.

However, if you already have a bad air conditioner compressor, all you have to do is simply replace the component. Kindly contact an expert auto technician to do the replacement.

Repair/replace faulty cooling fan.

Sometimes, a blown fuse or some sort of electrical fault may be responsible for the malfunctioning of the cooling fan. If this is the case, ensure to replace the blown fuse and rectify the electrical faults.

However, if the cooling fan is the real issue, kindly get a new replacement in order to rectify the problem immediately. So, if your Chrysler Town and Country AC is not blowing or the front AC fails to work, implementing the solutions above may be helpful.

front ac in car not working


Q: Why does my AC work in the back of my car but not the front?

Airflow control diverters or flaps – AC vents issue is one of the culprits of this problem. If your car’s back air conditioner is working and the front fails to work, you most likely have a blocked front AC vent.

Sometimes, your car’s air intake system may be clogged, preventing proper air inflow. When this happens, it becomes difficult for air to circulate appropriately within the air conditioner system.

So, if you’re experiencing less cooling from your car’s front AC, ensure to check for clogs in the front vents or the air intake system. If this is the case, carefully clean the vents with detergent and water solution using a foam paintbrush.

Q: Why is my AC not blowing out the front vents?

A clogged air intake system may be the reason why your car’s air conditioner’s front vents are not blowing out. The intake system helps to collect air from outside the vehicle and circulate it through the air conditioner system.

When this component is faulty or clogged, it will be difficult to collect air. So, if your Acura MDX front AC is not working, you most likely have a clogged air intake system.

Therefore, ensure to check for a bad relay or blown fuse within your car’s electrical system. It would be best to contact an expert auto technician to diagnose and fix this problem as soon as possible.

Q: Can a blown fuse cause AC not to work?

Of course, a blown fuse can cause a car’s AC not to work. This is because the air conditioner system is largely electronic. The operations can be altered by a simple electrical fault, especially a blown fuse.

If you work on other areas like cleaning the vents, topping off the refrigerants, etc., and you have a blown fuse, the AC will not work. The fuse is a very sensitive component in the HVAC system.

It is important for you to properly diagnose the actual cause of the problem before acting. If you are a DIYer, ensure to get a voltmeter to test for the blown fuse in order to replace it. However, if you can’t do the job, you may have to contact a professional auto technician to do it.

Q: Why is only one side of my car’s AC working?

If one side of your car’s AC is not working, the car is most likely running on a low refrigerant level. Although blocked vents can sometimes also be a culprit; however, you can blame a low refrigerant level nine times out of ten.

When your car’s air conditioning system’s refrigerant is low, it will automatically alter the temperature circulation from one end of the dashboard to the other. Hence, the system may blow cold air from one side while the other side fails to cooperate.

If you’re experiencing this challenge, ensure to consult an expert auto mechanic to check it out and rectify the problem immediately. Always remember that delay can make a problem escalate severely.

Q: How do I know if my AC vent is clogged?

Some of the signs that let you know that your car’s AC vent is clogged include the following; inconsistent temperature circulation, dust build-up within vents, overheating, etc.

When you have a clogged air conditioner vent, the difference in temperature circulation will make a part of the car cold while the other becomes hot. Also, you may physically spot dust build-up when you carefully look through the vents.

In some cases, the dust build-up may be protruding from the vent. Meanwhile, a prolonged clogged AC vent may eventually lead to overheating within the air conditioning system and cause the HVAC system to completely shut down.

Q: Where is the AC fuse located?

A car’s AC fuse is located within the disconnection box that is connected to the air conditioner. It is a wire within a glass casing that protects the air conditioning system from electrical damages that can hinder its proper functioning.

However, if you have a blown fuse, ensure to check it out with a working voltmeter. Once you confirm it, kindly remove the blown fuse and replace it.

If you’re a DIYer, replacing this component can be pretty easy. However, if you’re not sure of doing a perfect job, kindly contact an expert auto technician.

Q: Can a dirty air filter cause AC not to cool?

Yes, a dirty air filter can alter your car’s air conditioner from cooling properly. The air filter helps to trap dirt, dust, and other contaminants from accessing the HVAC system. This process cleans the air that flows into the air conditioning system before it circulates.

However, due to excessive dust or dirt build-up, the air filter can be clogged over time, resulting in several malfunctions. One of such malfunction is the impact it has on the air conditioner’s ability to cool properly.

So, if your car’s AC is not cooling as expected, ensure to check the air filter, among other related components. If the component is clogged, kindly clean or replace the air filter.

Q: How much does it cost to fix Front ac not working but back is?

The cost of fixing the problem with a car’s HVAC system where the front AC is not working is estimated to be around $100 – $900. However, the cost can be more depending on whether you have to replace faulty components like the compressor, sensor, condenser, or hose.

Meanwhile, the car makes and model can also impact the cost of repair. While some cars’ AC problems can consume as much as $1000 – $4,000, others may fall within $163 – $520.

In any case, ensure to contact an expert auto technician to diagnose the AC problem before opting for a repair or replacement of any component.

Final Words

Some of the common reasons why you’re experiencing a situation of front AC not working but back is have been exposed in this article. The corresponding solutions have also been unveiled simultaneously.

So, if you’re battling this issue in your car at the moment, ensure to implement the recommended solutions above. Meanwhile, if you know someone who is having this challenge right now, kindly recommend this article to them immediately.

Osuagwu Solomon

Osuagwu Solomon is a certified mechanic with over a decade of experience in the mechanic garage, and he has over five years of experience in the writing industry. He started writing automotive articles to share his garage experience with car enthusiasts and armature mechanics. If he is not in the garage fixing challenging mechanical problems, he is writing automotive repair guides, buyer’s guides, and car and tools comparisons.

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