The 2002 – 2006 generation of Toyota Camry cars was once had the problem of the A/C light flashing and would not allow cool air to enter the cabin. You would see the A/C button flashing and know there was a problem.
Two different and distinct cooling channels go through your vehicle’s engine block. One of those channels is for the engine oil while the other is for the coolant. These help cool the engine and keep it from overheating.
Even if the engine is cool, you may not be able to get cool AC because of other issues. The issue that we are going to look at is the AC compressor clutch. If the fuse for the clutch is not working, it needs to be replaced.
Try Replacing the Relay
It is possible to fix this AC problem. You'll need to look for the relay (which is bigger than a fuse). The video below has some details of what to look for. If you want to save money do it yourself, here's a list of steps you can follow:
- Turn off your car and open up the fuse box, which is mostly located on the right side of your battery.
- Find the relay located as shone in the video or on the back of the fuse box named MG CLT.
- Purchase the item "AC Relay" numbered 35874 from a store. Alternatively you can use the car horn relay and put it where the AC relay was located.
- After replacing the relay with a new one or the horn relay, start the car and check to see that the AC compressor clutch is working and the AC light is solid.
- Make sure to put the car horn relay back if used.
There are two things to note:
- Replacing the cabin air filter may be a good idea since your working on your air condition. This will make sure your getting clean air to the cabin, so you can breath easy.
- You'll find the AC cabin filter in the back of the glove box. Just replace it the correct direction for cleaner air and possibly better air flow.
Try Looking for other Issues
2002 Camry A/C light flashes if the belt is slipping or the compressor is not turning properly. Another possible reason is that speed sensor of the compressor does not match the speed of the engine.
Check that the belt is not loose or slipping. If the belt is loose, the belt tensioner can be adjusted but this should be done by a mechanic to prevent creating other problems. Look for wear and cracking on the belt. This means the belt will needs to be replaced, which should be fairly easy to do it yourself.
To confirm that the relay is the problem you can try putting the clutch relay where the horn relay was. Try the horn. If the horn works, your relay is probably fine and the AC compressor may have an electrical or mechanical issue.
If your Camry 2002 still has a flashing A/C light without any cold air, fix it by following this.
Look at the wires connected to the AC compressor. If the connector are loose tighten them. Also look for leaks in the compressor and AC system, as well as listening for strange sounds.
The video describes hitting the relay hard but I would recommend getting a new relay since they are easy to get.
How to Replace the Relay
If you decided to buy a new relay then you can pull out the old one and replace it with a new one. The fuse box is located under the hood (not to be confused with the one that is located under the dash) near the car's battery.
Unlatch the black cover which pops up or off depending upon the direction of force. Don’t apply excessive force because you don’t want to break the latch. Your task is to find the correct relay.
Use the inside lid of the fuse box to find where the correct relay is located. Otherwise you can look at the owners manual and it may have the information you need. In some cases, the required relays will have a number that you can look up and see what type of relay it is if your still not sure.
If you need to use pliers to pull out the relay be careful not to crush the relay. Usually a little wiggling will help a stuck relay come out. The new relay will fit in the say direction as the old one, again use gentle force to make sure it sits flush against the bottom of the fuse box.
Applying dielectric grease can also be apply if necessary. Now, the next main step is to check that the new relay is working properly.
So when you finish, enter your car, start it, and check your AC light. Did it stay on and is the AC working now. If so, everything you need to do is complete. The last step would be to turn off the car and replace the fuse box lid.
If the AC system continues to have problems, you can check to see if the AC compressor clutch is engaging. If not, you may have another problem with your AC system. Check these articles for more information. (Article 1 and Article 2)
Another solution that may help is to keep your engine on for a while after installing the new relay until the AC flashing light goes away. Some people say that resetting the car computer memory may also help fix this issue.
AC System Problem Troubleshoots with Error Codes
When you enter your car put the key in the ignition switch and see if you can find the recirculation button and the button labeled AUTO and push them at the same time. (Not all models will have this option). Then turn the key to on while holding the buttons. The air conditioning error screen should shows up. It has a numerical code for problems, and you'll see a code of (00) if everything is normal.
The LED screen will flash for a while, and then you will that everything is normal (00) or that you need to fix an error. After error codes displays, you can hit the off button, to stop the diagnosis.
Before trying to displaying these codes on your car, here is some information about the codes.
The heater control panel of AC has an ECU which keeps the codes and monitors the circuit system. The ECU has a memory of all the codes in case of any problem, but it doesn’t have a memory of code number 22 and 23. To get stored codes see for the retrieving code. All these codes display on the temperature display panel.
If an error code, you may need to check out the problem, especially if it has anything to do with the coolant or evaporator, since these can cause more serious problems with your car. The display will slow down by one step each time you press the button. If you hear a tone every time the code displays this may mean the problem is continuing to persist.
Below is the list of all the error codes which can help you diagnose your car's problem:
- Code number (00) states normally
- Code number (11) inside vehicle temperature
- Code number (12) ambient temperature
- Code number (13) evaporator
- Code number (14) coolant
- Code number (21) solar sensor
- Code number (22) compression lock
- Code number (23) press switch
- Code number (31) air mix position
- Code number (32) air inlet
- Code number (33) air outlet
- Code number (41) air mix servomotor
- Code number (42) air inlet servomotor
- Code number (43) air outlet servomotor