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99 & up 7.3L Power Stroke Engine and Drivetrain Discussion of the 99 & up 7.3L Power Stroke diesel engine and drivetrain in the 1999-Up Super Duty trucks and Excursions. No gas engine discussion allowed except on transmissions and drivetrain that pertain to all models. Please confine discussion of topics in this forum to those items that are specific to the 7.3L Power Stroke engine.

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Old 02-24-2010, 11:13 PM   #1 (permalink)
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squeaky a/c compressor clutch

This has something that has been getting progressively worse over the last 4-5 months. Originally, I thought it was one of the idler bearings going out. Earlier this week I finally got around to looking at it. It turns out It's actually my a/c compressor that is squeaking. It doesn't seem to matter if the a/c clutch is engaged or not, it squeaks the same either way. Gets progessively worse as the rpm's go up. I tried squirting some multi-purpose lube, it got better for a little bit, but now it seems to actually have gotten a little worse. I'm assuming there is bearing or something in there going out. Can it be repaired or do i need to replace the whole thing?
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Old 02-25-2010, 12:23 AM   #2 (permalink)
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There is a bearing in the pulley.
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Old 02-25-2010, 09:59 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Yes, there is a bearing in the pulley but it only turns when the clutch is disengaged. Once that pump is engaged that bearing does nothing. If you still get the squeal with the clutch in either state, then it's not the A/C compressor. Pull the belt and check each pulley by hand. I'm sure you'll find it's an idler pulley.
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Old 02-25-2010, 10:26 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Yes, there is a bearing in the pulley but it only turns when the clutch is disengaged. Once that pump is engaged that bearing does nothing. If you still get the squeal with the clutch in either state, then it's not the A/C compressor. Pull the belt and check each pulley by hand. I'm sure you'll find it's an idler pulley.
You need to educate yourself about A/C compressors if you want to give advice about them. You are talking based on what you think you remember about what you have heard instead of what you know. Your memory isn't working very well.

The pulley turns all the time, compressor on or off. If it makes the noise all the time it is the pulley bearing. If it only makes the noise when the clutch is engaged it is the compressor.
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Old 02-25-2010, 11:16 PM   #5 (permalink)
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You need to educate yourself about A/C compressors if you want to give advice about them. You are talking based on what you think you remember about what you have heard instead of what you know. Your memory isn't working very well.

The pulley turns all the time, compressor on or off. If it makes the noise all the time it is the pulley bearing. If it only makes the noise when the clutch is engaged it is the compressor.
Well I took things apart this afternoon to see what it was. I had never taken an a/c clutch apart before, so it was a 1st for me. It's definately the a/c that is making the noise. I've had the belt off several times now trying to figure this out. It's def the a/c. I pulled the clutch off. I think BTBBT is right when he said the pulley bearing only turns when it's disengaged. That makes sense cause, once its engaged the pulley still turns, but the bearing stops because the pulley is locked to the a/c shaft.
Anyways, I had a bear of a time getting the pulley off, I ended up not taking it off it was stuck on so good. I pulled the outer seal off the pulley bearing and put some grease in it with a grease needle, lubed it up real good. Put everything back together, still squeaks. I'm guessing there is a bearing the a/c pump itself that is going out. Can this be replaced or should I jsut replace the whole pump?
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Old 02-25-2010, 11:29 PM   #6 (permalink)
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usually it is the clutch which has the problem however you can purchase the entire unit with clutch attached. However you need special equipment to R & R the refrigerant. You can't just let it go into the atmosphere. $10K fine from EPA if caught. Clutchs can be purchased seperately also
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Old 02-25-2010, 11:31 PM   #7 (permalink)
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usually it is the clutch which has the problem however you can purchase the entire unit with clutch attached. However you need special equipment to R & R the refrigerant. You can't just let it go into the atmosphere. $10K fine from EPA if caught. Clutchs can be purchased seperately also
You don't have to discharge the system to replace a clutch assembly.
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Old 02-26-2010, 10:47 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I think BTBBT is right when he said the pulley bearing only turns when it's disengaged. That makes sense cause, once its engaged the pulley still turns, but the bearing stops because the pulley is locked to the a/c shaft.
I'd be interested to hear the explaination of how the bearing can stop turning if the pulley is turning.

I think it is an engineering marvel to press a bearing into a pulley then somehow stop that bearing from turning while allowing the pulley to continue to turn.
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Old 02-26-2010, 05:57 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I'd be interested to hear the explaination of how the bearing can stop turning if the pulley is turning.

I think it is an engineering marvel to press a bearing into a pulley then somehow stop that bearing from turning while allowing the pulley to continue to turn.
The Bearing stops turning as a "bearing" once the AC Clutch is engaged because the Pulley and AC Input shaft are now locked together and turning at the same speed, hence the bearing is no longer spinning as inner and outer halves, and as such it can't make noise whether it is good or bad.

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Old 02-26-2010, 06:28 PM   #10 (permalink)
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The Bearing stops turning as a "bearing" once the AC Clutch is engaged because the Pulley and AC Input shaft are now locked together and turning at the same speed, hence the bearing is no longer spinning as inner and outer halves, and as such it can't make noise whether it is good or bad.

Wayne B
Refer to my reply in post #4.
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Old 02-27-2010, 09:05 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Refer to my reply in post #4.
You sir are wrong.
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Old 02-27-2010, 10:41 AM   #12 (permalink)
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You sir are wrong.
Nope, I'm right.

The other guys are basing their comments on either memory or hearsay so I can understand their confusion. I can even tell by WayneB's comment that he thinks the inner pulley bearing race is on the compressor shaft, it isn't. But you have just taken yours apart and looked at it so I'm a little surprised you don't know how it works. It isn't a very complicated arrangement. But hey it's your truck so you can replace whatever parts you want to fix it. Replacing the complete compressor assembly will fix it. But then you will need that recovery and recharge equipment that Fordpowerstroke350 referred to.
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Old 02-27-2010, 11:15 AM   #13 (permalink)
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I think there is confusion as to which bearing we are talking about. The front shaft bearing turns when the shaft turns (clutch engaged) - it is a sleeve bearing, and sealed (to keep the refrigerant in) I've never heard one squeak, but when the wear, they tend to leak. The clutch bearing, a roller bearing, allows the clutch pulley to freewheel around the clutch shaft when the hub is dissengaged. When it goes, it will make a grinding noise when the clutch is dissengaged, and go away when engaged, as the whole assembly is rotating together at that point. I've rebuilt dozens of compressors - last one was this month. I'm fully EPA certified in both HVAC and MVAC.
Nope, the inner bearing race never rotates and the outer race always rotates. Clutch engagement doesn't change what rotates in the pulley.
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Old 02-27-2010, 11:25 AM   #14 (permalink)
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The only way that would work is if the bearing went over the housing. The one's I've rebuilt, the bearing goes over the shaft. Granted, I've never had to rebuild a Ford compressor, but on A-6 and A-4 compressors, the hub rotates over the input shaft.

I've got manuals to prove it...
The bearings do go on a hub. They do not go on a shaft.

If you mean A-6 (I've never heard of an A-4) GM compressors you are still wrong. They also work the way I'm describing.

You should get rid of those manuals, they are not correct.
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Old 02-27-2010, 11:27 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Bad news everyone - 444-4D is right. I just pulled a diagram on the new compressors. The newer compressors have an extension from the housing in the front that the bearing seats on. I guess all of us old folks were remembering how it used to be...
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