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2020 Kia Sorento EX+
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407 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I just figured out today that when I have auto temperature control activated that the A/C will be activated, but the light on the A/C switch will not be illuminated (nor will it show on the little display).

I know that it is on because the air coming from the vents is very cold, even when it is hot outside. Also, if i manually activate the A/C, the temperature remains equally as cold coming from the vents and the light illuminates.

The only way I can get the A/C light to illuminate when on auto temp control is to turn the temperature all the way down to "low".

This makes me thing that my A/C is always on (so long as auto temp control is enabled, which it usually is), and maybe a reason for poor fuel mileage, as using the A/C increases fuel consumption.

I am also wondering if this has anything to do with the strange gurgling noise that I hear when the climate control system is on at any fan speed. Perhaps my A/C unit is stuck on and won't turn off? I was told that the advanced system on this car circulates refrigerant all the time (creating the gurgle) to keep the seals supple, but something tells me that isn't accurate... if that were the case would it not require that the compressor be running all the time, and would that not by design be somewhat inefficient?

Can anyone else reproduce this strange effect on their auto climate control?

I have a service appointment on friday to replace a broken seat belt clasp (broken upon delivery), and will ask them to look into the strange A/C behavior that is occurring.
 

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Premium Member
'12 Rio SLS, '13 XR6 Turbo, '15 XR8 S/C
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995 Posts
on our climate control, once you hit auto, the a/c illuminates, and won't actually let you turn the a/c off manually at all. And if you hit auto, then a/c really quickly, sometimes it'll let you turn it off, but then comes back on automatically a minute later and locks you out again. It's a weird system that's for sure. Our car also had the weird gurgling with a/c off upon delivery, haven't noticed it since.

our mileage has been pretty ordinary too but it's still wearing in, and is down to the 8.5's in peak hour (from 10 when new) and 6.7 on the freeway @ 110KM/h. It only has 1500KM on it and will get better.

Point is that's been with the A/C on basically all the time, with climate set at 23 deg C (start of winter here).

The AC also tends to stay on for the auto demister function to work. It's a very effective function and it may be on all the time (despite the A/C light on the button being on or not) on the Canadian version as you guys get far more cold than we do.
 

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2013 Rio SX Hatchback
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417 Posts
I believe that A/C has less of an effect on mileage than is generally believed. Modern A/C systems have a negligible effect on mileage.
 

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2020 Kia Sorento EX+
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407 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
ah, cool.
so i guess the old "cheaper to open your windows when driving under 50 mph instead of using A/C" doesn't hold true any more.
thanks everyone!
 

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'12 Kia Rio LX. '11 Toyota Tacoma, '07 Honda S2000, '11 Husaberg FS570, KTM 990 Adventure
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267 Posts
I believe that A/C has less of an effect on mileage than is generally believed. Modern A/C systems have a negligible effect on mileage.
i don't use my a/c often, but when i do, it has a definate effect on power. car is definately more lethargic with a/c on vs a/c off. that may contribute to mileage decrease, although i am jut theorizing.
 

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Accord, stick
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206 Posts
I would say A/C is 'nice to have' feature which might help you survive few times going from A to B during summer. While living in Europe our car did not have it. We still managed to travel through most central/west Europe during summers SO it is possible to live without it. If I had it - I would use it for sure.

Last year the only thing I got from my A/C was warm air. This year I did a lot of research, watched youtube, called 'garages'. Just inspection is from $35 to $100. No, I did not call dealer since I still love my arms and legs...

So I become brave enough and bought one of those A/C refill kits...
 

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12 RIO 5 SX, 07 VW Passat 2.0L turbo 1952 Siata Diana
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168 Posts
The industry thought is that the AC puls your MPG down by 2-3 MPG. The automatic systems and manual systems both have to run the same amount to cool you car to a same temperature.
 

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Cerato S Hatch Auto
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1,236 Posts
The industry thought is that the AC pulls your MPG down by 2-3 MPG. The automatic systems and manual systems both have to run the same amount to cool you car to a same temperature.
I would agree with that. I keep regular checks on our Cerato, and in summer (30-35°C) we get 24 MPG (US) around town, and this improves to 26 MPG in "Winter" (20°C). We keep the A/C turned on all the time, but in the cooler months the compressor isn't operating, of course. These are daytime temperatures at about the time of day the car is normally driven.
 
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