Dodge Caravan a/c Clutch Replacement

Category: Auto Tuning

3.3 liter

The ac on this 3.3 liter Dodge Caravan is still working but it is now making a terrible noise when it is engaged. The other problem is that the ac is not disengaging and still makes noise after it is turned off. If the ac is still blowing cold air the compressor is probably still operating fine. If no cold air is blowing then you will first need to verify that there is enough coolant in the system to allow it to turn on. The other possibility is that the compressor has gone bad. This article will only cover the compressor which is a very common problem with ac units.

This plastic engine guard is located under the passenger side and will need to be removed to access the ac.

belly pan

 You can see by the yellow arrows that the spacing isn’t even and the piece is broken. The arrow points to the idle tensioner. The tensioner is generally loosened by rotating the piece with a ratchet or socket, but there isn’t enough room to get at this spot. Luckily located at the back of the belt tensioner is a block that an adjustable wrench fits on. Just rotate then slide the belt off the tensioner wheel.

belt tensioner

This three jaw puller can be used to remove this pulley, first you will need to loosen the bolt located in the center of the pulley. As the pulley works out farther it will eventually pull out far enough to tighten up against the center bolt. As it comes out farther you will need to use a longer bolt until it comes off. Before you remove the pulley remove the center piece first and refer to the picture two spaces below.

clutch puller

bearing circlip

The two arrows point to the cir-clip that will need to be removed for the bearing to come off. If you don’t remove it first you have what happened here. From this picture you see that the clip will still need to be removed, which includes reinstalling and uninstalling the pulley again for it to come off.

clutch coil

Here is the ac clutch coil which can be removed by the cir-clip shown by the center yellow circle. The plug for the ac clutch is shown in the red, the little orange clip will need to come out before the electrical connection will pull apart.

worn clutch

Here are the damaged ac clutch parts which show major wear.

new clutch

Here are the new parts including the new cir-clip held in my hand. The beveled cir-clip edge must face outward. Always verify that the cir-clip is in the groove by rotating it in the groove.

feeler gauge

Here is the new clutch reassembled on the old ac compressor unit. The feeler gauge is used to check the space shown here. There are a few small washers included that are placed behind the pulley to get this spacing correct. The spacing dimensions are shown below. The break-in procedure for the clutch is also shown below. Don’t skimp on procedures or the part may fail prematurely.

break in