A/C Question

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  #1  
Old 07-25-02, 12:28 AM
Frosty
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A/C Question

Hey guys,

I have a 95 mercury sable, 3.0L, 58K miles on it & the a/c has been getting progressively warmer over the past few weeks. now it is completely warm. i bought a can of r-143a refrigerant. i have 2 valves to which to attach my lil bottle to. i cannot figure out which valve i attach my lil coolant can to. i know one of the lines is high pressure & the other is low pressure, and that i need to attach the can to the low pressure line. on the bottle it says "caution: can may burst if attached to high pressure line and cause bodily injury" granted i do want to have cool air but not at the expense of a missing hand.

the can also said the low pressure line is fatter. the fatter line does has a valve on it by the accumulator or drier (it's the big thing that looks like a coffee can in the shape of a big tylenol) maybe that is where i attach it to?

I, as always, appreciate your guys' input.
 
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  #2  
Old 07-25-02, 12:39 AM
knuckles
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To answer your question directly, yes, the low side fitting is near the accumulator & that's where you want to hook up your hose.

BTW, the high side fitting is larger than the low side, so you can't accidentally hook up your charging hose to the wrong fitting.

BUT...How do you know the system is low to begin with? You could have a simple problem like a bad low pressure switch or a major problem like a blown compressor. You won't really know what's going on until you get a set of gauges. Adding refrigerant w/o gauges is asking for trouble.

Autozone sells a pretty nice set of Mastercool brand gauges for about $100. They'll probably loan/rent you a set for $0 + a refundable deposit.
 
  #3  
Old 07-25-02, 03:21 AM
Joe_F
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I agree with Knuckles. Learn it right and do it right.

The days of "topping off" are long gone.
 
  #4  
Old 07-25-02, 02:12 PM
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Joe- and all-

My 86 Cutlass, 307, has a slight A/C problem too- at stoplights and such, the air gets warmer. Not quite ambient temp, it is at least a bit cooler, but no good in this SC sun.

Obvioulsy I need to get it checked out (still R12). Someone told me to try replacing the belt first, that the belt may be slipping. Could that be so?

Otherwise, I'm gonna have someone do a leak check on it to see if it's leaking. I have a 12oz can of R12 I found, unopened, so if/when it needs it I can put it in there.

Mako
 
  #5  
Old 07-25-02, 08:02 PM
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It will naturally be a little warmer at idle, as the condenser doesn't get all the wind from driving to help keep it cool. A common cause of warm air at idle, cold while driving, is a bad fan clutch. Try getting the car up to operating temp, shut it off, and give the fan blade a spin by hand. If it continues to turn much at all after you release it, then replace it. It should stop turning almost immediately after you release it.
 
  #6  
Old 07-25-02, 09:38 PM
Joe_F
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Mako:

Cheese gave you some good advice to follow. A lot of things could cause that. Any shop with R12 gauges and service tools can tell you if the sealed system has a problem or it's elsewhere.

If it works well on the highway, chances are the sealed system is ok.
 
  #7  
Old 07-26-02, 04:47 AM
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Yeah, it's fine on the highway other than the max cooling ability is a bit shy of what it should be.

I'll go out on my lunch break, run the car up and down the drag (making stops at any fast food place necessary to keep my fuel tank up ) and do the fan check.

I've heard that performance fans (meaning "higher volume" fans) increase cooling capacity. Is that so?
 
  #8  
Old 07-26-02, 05:29 AM
Joe_F
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If the system is working right, it will be a meat locker, just like my Oldsmobile. The R4 compressor/CCOT system in a GM REALLY gets cooking after a while.

GM cars of this vintage have EXCELLENT HVAC . The only thing is that the vents are a little on the puny side. Lol.
 
  #9  
Old 07-26-02, 08:27 AM
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Yes the vents are puny, but then again, does size matter???
 
  #10  
Old 07-26-02, 09:03 AM
Joe_F
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Sometimes you want that volume of air to come on you when it's stifling like that. Otherwise, it is fine.
 
  #11  
Old 07-29-02, 11:55 AM
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I checked out the fan- as soon as I spin it, regardless of how hard, it stops almost immediatly, so no problem there.

Once I get moved I'm gonna have the belts replaced and the freon level checked to see if it needs a leak check.
 
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