Air con fuel usage - Ford C-Max Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 06-01-2012, 06:04 PM Thread Starter
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Air con fuel usage

I had my air con serviced and regassed today(first time in 4 years). Thankfully the system still operated fully and all done for 60.
I asked him how much fuel does aircon use. I found this very hard to believe when he told me, that if I had a full tank of fuel and had the aircon on all the time, the fuel used would be an egg cup full He told me it's a complete myth that the aircon uses 5% to 15%. He said if the aircon is gassed to its optimum amount and the vehicle is no older than 8 years old or so, than the amount of fuel used would be almost negligible.
What do you people think?

Blue 2 Litre Diesel Ghia ,2005, Front and rear parking sensors,fridge, sony 6 cd player, Full cream leather interior.Favourite of all-sunroof for those hot British summers
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post #2 of 12 Old 06-01-2012, 11:46 PM
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Depends greatly on the percentage of the engines power the system consumes. Petrol engines, particularly small ones, seem to be more affected than diesels, as I have mentioned before. An egg cup full is maybe a bit optimistic though. What I will say, is that there was absolutely NO difference in overall fuel consumption on my 2.0 HDi Picasso when I made the Aberdeen/S Yorks journey in July with the system on, and again in November with it off. It did 54 MPG both times. However, if you're doing a lot of stop/start heavy traffic style stuff and the engine is idling with the system running, it will make considerably more difference, purely because the ECU will have to compensate for the draw of the aircon by putting in more fuel to maintain a steady idle. You'll just have to "suck it and see". I can't imagine it will make more than 1 mpg difference to your 2.0 TDCi.

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post #3 of 12 Old 06-02-2012, 05:23 AM
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I'll have to look up all my previous thermodynamics notes

It will greatly depend on the temperature difference between actual and required, the amount of air flow you require and the amount of moisture in the air concerned

Edit
I found a research report by Ricardo Consulting Engineers where they had found parameter changes to the A/C operation gave a change in energy use for the A/C of about 6% but that this only really led to a chage in FUEL Consumption of around 2%




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Last edited by Richard G; 06-02-2012 at 06:35 AM.
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post #4 of 12 Old 06-02-2012, 09:45 AM
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During the recent hot spell (also known as summer) my average mpg didn't drop at all using air con. I know it does increase the load on the engine and it will use more fuel but the indicated average stayed constant.

Admittedly, I've not reset the average for a while so the indicated figure is over quite a few miles meaning it takes longer for any increases or decreases to show but I'm impressed with it.

The dog loves it too following his walks, sitting infront of the rear vents cooling off!

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post #5 of 12 Old 06-02-2012, 06:04 PM
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I now always have the Air-Con switched on as I have found that by not having it on regularly then the some of the Air-Con system can malfunction thru not being used. I have gained this experience when I had a 2.3 litre petrol automatic Ford Galaxy Ghia, I find the slight increase in fuel consumption far outways the cost of repairs to the Air-Con system. I have been informed that it should be used at least one day every couple of weeks to keep it in working condition.

2007 2.0 Zetec Petrol Automatic. Built November 2007. Registered 20/12/2007.
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post #6 of 12 Old 06-02-2012, 07:34 PM Thread Starter
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Some good points there. So depends entirely on how fast air vents are on, smaller/larger engine, temperature.
Jumborat, you mentioned rear vents, Is that for the 2012 models only?
Dave, Yes he mentioned that the aircon must be used several times a month ALL year round to keep it maintained. Use it or lose it were his words.

Blue 2 Litre Diesel Ghia ,2005, Front and rear parking sensors,fridge, sony 6 cd player, Full cream leather interior.Favourite of all-sunroof for those hot British summers
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post #7 of 12 Old 06-03-2012, 09:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bottletree View Post
Jumborat, you mentioned rear vents, Is that for the 2012 models only?
I think it was a feature from the launch of the new shape C-Max in Titanium spec but I'm not sure, they're at the rear of the centre console. I coudn't say whether any of the previous shape cars had them though.

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post #8 of 12 Old 06-03-2012, 10:56 AM
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If you're on of the lucky people who has bought a car which had Climate control specified from new the system should look after itself. Just leave the compressor selected to "on" , set your temperature and drive away! Two of my Xantias had climate control (STANDARD above LX after '96!!!!FORD TAKE NOTE!!) and if you looked under the bonnet on a cold day, the compressor was off unless screen demist was selected. When the temperature in the cabin rose above that specified, and the system couldn't get it down with fresh air, the compessor came on. As the meerkat says "Simples"!! Seems to be to complex for Ford designers to grasp though!! Same as "one shot" windows!

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post #9 of 12 Old 06-03-2012, 12:02 PM
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As the meerkat says "Simples"!! Seems to be to complex for Ford designers to grasp though!! Same as "one shot" windows!
Colin
Cost not complexity as in most cases the same third party supplier supplies to all car manuf's

Same for "one shot windows"




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post #10 of 12 Old 06-03-2012, 01:06 PM Thread Starter
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The air con man said some designs of cars had the air con pipes in the most ridiculous places where they would be easily damaged by stones flying off the road. The worse designs being the peugeots. The pipes lying under the front grill with no protection from the road beneath and the road ahead.

Blue 2 Litre Diesel Ghia ,2005, Front and rear parking sensors,fridge, sony 6 cd player, Full cream leather interior.Favourite of all-sunroof for those hot British summers
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