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Be warned that the A/C in the Ascent is weak. At 90 degrees you have to run the a/c on MAX and use the paddle shifters to keep the RPMs up. Unless there is something wrong with ours then this is not really a very good A/C. Our 2003 Ford Escape pours out cold in under a minute. The Ascent takes several miles to get cold, and it is never real cold.
 

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Be warned that the A/C in the Ascent is weak. At 90 degrees you have to run the a/c on MAX and use the paddle shifters to keep the RPMs up. Unless there is something wrong with ours then this is not really a very good A/C. Our 2003 Ford Escape pours out cold in under a minute. The Ascent takes several miles to get cold, and it is never real cold.
I saw several people in another thread say in similar conditions it worked amazingly and wasn't weak. So I don't know, but maybe worth looking into a bit.
 

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Be warned that the A/C in the Ascent is weak. At 90 degrees you have to run the a/c on MAX and use the paddle shifters to keep the RPMs up. Unless there is something wrong with ours then this is not really a very good A/C. Our 2003 Ford Escape pours out cold in under a minute. The Ascent takes several miles to get cold, and it is never real cold.
I saw several people in another thread say in similar conditions it worked amazingly and wasn't weak. So I don't know, but maybe worth looking into a bit.
I agree with Norway. I picked up my car and it was 100° out. Seriously. Anyone who wants to check can look up June 30th, 2018, Emerson NJ. We set the car to max, and my car was frigid. I had to turn it down. The coolest were in the higher surrounding areas, with nice 92-97° temps.

So, if you're really finding it's not working at a paltry 90°, I'd have it checked out.
 

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Here's how the Subaru Ascent AC works

So, here's the difference between how the Ascent's AC seems to work and some other vehicles' AC seems to work.

Other vehicles blast the coldest possible air until the car is cooled. The Ascent, especially when recirculation isn't on, seems to vary how much it cools the air based on the outside air and inside air temperatures. For instance, if recirculation isn't on, and it's 70° outside and 80° inside, and you set the AC to 68° or 70°, you won't feel cold air blasting out of the vents. It'll pump in the outside 70° air to cool the cabin to that temperature. That saves robbing engine power by avoiding spinning up the compressor.

The alternative, for those who like feeling those cold blasts of air is to spin the temperature dial to "LO", which puts the AC on full blast, full time, and then dialing it down when the interior is the temperature they want.

Alternatively, if one switches the system to "FULL AUTO" instead of "AUTO" (press the temp button to switch modes), the system is more likely to do max cooling if there's a big temp difference between the interior temp and what's selected. As it gets closer to the desired temp (with a similar outside temp), it uses more of the outside air (and thus the vent air doesn't feel as cold) and spins down the fan speeds.

Hope that helps explain why the AC doesn't necessarily feel as cold as expected.

Be warned that the A/C in the Ascent is weak. At 90 degrees you have to run the a/c on MAX and use the paddle shifters to keep the RPMs up. Unless there is something wrong with ours then this is not really a very good A/C. Our 2003 Ford Escape pours out cold in under a minute. The Ascent takes several miles to get cold, and it is never real cold.
I agree with Norway. I picked up my car and it was 100° out. Seriously. Anyone who wants to check can look up June 30th, 2018, Emerson NJ. We set the car to max, and my car was frigid. I had to turn it down. The coolest were in the higher surrounding areas, with nice 92-97° temps.

So, if you're really finding it's not working at a paltry 90°, I'd have it checked out.
The Ascent I test drove had kick a** AC. We are in the South and it was pushing upper 90s when we had our test drive.
 

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Drove mine around July 4th with it being 106 outside according to the car and had no issues cooling the car down. Also if it is really hot outside you might want to turn on the rear A/C as I read that has a second compressor near the back tires. That might help instead of the front picking up the brunt of the work.

Also I set it to full Auto at around ~70 degrees with the whole system synced to that temp.
 

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My experience is similar to the OP. Setting it to max AC, LO temperature and highest fan speed, I was surprised by how cold the AC wasn't. I mean, it works, but not like a 2003 Ford Escape. Maybe they use a different refrigerant?
 

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Man, the 2003 Ford Escape must had some pretty sweet AC tech in it. NASA probably bought the patent from Ford and now no vehicle will ever blow cold air like the 2003 Ford Escape...such a shame. ;)



Our Ascent gets cold quick and stays cool. If you are having trouble with yours, might be time to take it in.
 

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My experience is similar to the OP. Setting it to max AC, LO temperature and highest fan speed, I was surprised by how cold the AC wasn't. I mean, it works, but not like a 2003 Ford Escape. Maybe they use a different refrigerant?
Not that this is the reason you feel there is a difference, but they do actually use different refrigerant. Your Escape (like virtually every vehicle since R-12 was in use) uses R-134a, while the Ascent uses the relatively new R-1234yf refrigerant.
 

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I'm in Dallas, with temps at or above 100 for the month that I've had my Ascent. The A/C has been fantastic. I also have the slate black interior with the moon roof.


In the afternoon, I hit the max cool button when I get in and a few minutes later, I am turning the fan down. Sometimes before i get home, I am even turning the temp up.


Edited to add:


I do have the front and back synced together.
 

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I think the A/C is strong. I have mine set at 74 and I am comfortable. Anything below 70 and I feel like I am freezing.
 

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Be warned that the A/C in the Ascent is weak. At 90 degrees you have to run the a/c on MAX and use the paddle shifters to keep the RPMs up. Unless there is something wrong with ours then this is not really a very good A/C. Our 2003 Ford Escape pours out cold in under a minute. The Ascent takes several miles to get cold, and it is never real cold.
You should definitely have your a/c checked out. Heat index 106 here yesterday and my magnetite gray Ascent was cold. Yours may be malfunctioning.
 

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I agree. I had a 2007 RDX and it just felt like the vents were stronger combined with smaller space, it cooled faster. It's not that my Ascent doesn't cool, but it just doesn't feel it has the ability to blast super cold and fast. I thing the front middle vents are weak, the side vents seem better positioned.

It ends up getting cool and I have to go off of Lo, but when getting in on hot summer days I'd like the relief faster.
 

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Mine works fine in humid 90s, but nothing like an early 2000 Toyota. Your fingers get numb in that car and gets cold quick.
A lot of modern A/C systems are geared towards MPG. While they work they don't get to the point where you feel like you need gloves and sweatshirt.
 

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Running into same problem as OP. I'm in New England, high 50s today and I had to turn on MAX A/C several times plus run the cool seat to not burn up. In my Sienna I'd have the a/c set to 70 and be pleasantly cold. Setting the a/c to 70 in the Ascent doesn't stay cold. No bueno.
 

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Running into same problem as OP. I'm in New England, high 50s today and I had to turn on MAX A/C several times plus run the cool seat to not burn up. In my Sienna I'd have the a/c set to 70 and be pleasantly cold. Setting the a/c to 70 in the Ascent doesn't stay cold. No bueno.
Setting the AC to 70 in 50° weather will not use the AC. :tango_face_wink:

The only way to get the AC to turn on in 50° weather is to hit the "MAX AC" button or manually change the settings to "MAX AC".
 

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Some of you wouldn't make it down the street in my car. 93 Honda, no a/c, in South Georgia.
HA yup! I’m in CA where it’s been 100-110 all summer long with no AC in either of the cars we own. Needless to say, we can’t wait for our ascent to arrive on the 30th...of course right when it’s cooling down though!
 
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