Attach The Refrigerant Can
With the AC still running, thread the refrigerant can to the port on the service hose. Let the engine run and the compressor turn.;
- Press the trigger on the refrigerant can for 10 to 20 seconds and let the gas go into the system.;
- Keep monitoring the pressure to make sure you do not overcharge the system.
- Do not charge the pressure to more than 45psi.
Check The Cabin Temperature
It should now read 18 degrees Celsius. Verify that after reaching its lowest temperature, the clutch disengages and engages again as the vent temperature rises.
These steps should be pretty straightforward to follow. If your cars A/C still doesnt cool the cabin afterwards, then that might be another problem in itselfI suggest you take it to a specialist;and have it checked.
Repairing Your Ac System
So how do you get your AC system working like new again? After pinpointing the source of your refrigerant leak, your mechanic will create a repair plan. Air conditioning repairs often involve replacing the damaged part. After your system is working like new, your technician will refill your freon one final time to get your AC up and running.
You May Like: How To Detail Your Own Car
Check The Refrigerant Pressure In The Ac System Of Your Car
Next, you need to check the refrigerant pressure in your cars AC to be sure that the loss of cooling is caused by a decrease in gas pressure. Here is how to do it:;
- Locate a grey or black plastic cap attached to an aluminum pipe in the engine bay.;
- If you cannot find it, trace the large coolant line coming out of the passenger compartment and into the engine bay and youll find the cap on it.
- Remove the cap and attach the pressure gauge to the service port beneath it to check the pressure.
- With the AC turned on and on the lowest temperature settings, make sure that the AC compressor clutch is engaged.
- The pressure of the refrigerant in the system needs to be at least 35psi. Anything below that indicates that your AC needs recharging.
Reason #3: It Could Be Incompatible With Your Car
If your car is particularly old or new, it’s possible your car is incompatible with DIY A/C recharge canisters commonly found at auto parts stores.
Those cans typically use a mixture of R134a refrigerant, compressor oil and a leak stopping compound. Many classic cars built before 1994 use R12 refrigerant instead. Mixing refrigerant types is never a good idea, and can cause unintended consequences. In fact, the resulting mixture is so volatile it could damage the equipment used in professional A/C service — and many auto shops will refuse to work on cars that have had the wrong refrigerant put in.
What’s more, many modern cars aren’t compatible with these at-home recharge kits either. Some newer cars are equipped with a new, more environmentally friendly R1234yf refrigerant. And most hybrid and electric cars use a different type of A/C compressor which requires a different kind of oil. On these cars, it’s best to leave the A/C maintenance to the pros.
Don’t Miss: What Type Of Car Do I Have
How Does Freon Work
Within your cars air conditioner unit there is an intricate system of compressors and coils. The unit compresses the R-22 gas and makes it incredibly hot. This highly heated gas is then pushed through the coils in the unit. This cools the gas down and changes its state to liquid.
Once the freon is a liquid, it is able to absorb heat from the ambient air. At the same time, cool air is pushed out through the system. The air conditioning unit works in a cycle where the hot air is drawn in and the cool air is expelled.
Without the presence of freon or another refrigerant, the air conditioning unit cannot function correctly. If the refrigerant levels decline too much due to a leak, the air conditioner cannot work at all.
If you are concerned about your refrigerant levels dropping as a result of a leak, it is worth taking your car to a qualified mechanic. They will be able to look over the system for any evidence of a leak and fix it before more refrigerant is added.
It is very unwise to add additional freon to a leaking system as this can cause serious environmental damage.
Is It Safe To Drive With Broken Air Conditioning
Yes. People have been driving cars without air conditioning for years, from the first cars to hit the road all the way to modern times when the AC stops working. It is perfectly safe to drive without the air conditioner. The only possible safety concern is that your defogger will not work as effectively without the AC running to help it do its job. It will still blow air onto the windshield, which can still help defog it.
All that said, car air conditioner recharge kits make it so easy to do at home that theres no reason not to at least give it a try. The most common reason for your AC not working properly is a low charge of refrigerant. Its not the only reason, but its certainly worth a try before investigating replacing major components of the AC system.
Don’t Miss: What Kind Of Car Did Columbo Drive
Diy A/c Charging Does Not Evacuate Old Refrigerant
The reason your car’s A/C system needs to be recharged is that, over time, the refrigerant gas that makes the system work will leak out of the system. This process can take many years — but, eventually, every vehicle will need its A/C system recharged.
When you use a DIY canister to add more refrigerant, you can’t be sure how much is remaining in the system! This can lead to overcharging the system, which can cause significant damage. Instead, our professionals will begin by vacuuming out all the refrigerant from your car’s A/C system. This also removes any moisture that got into the system, which can also cause your A/C to run poorly. Then, once we know your car’s A/C system is totally free of stale refrigerant and moisture, we can fill it up with fresh refrigerant the correct way.
Refill With Refrigerant Gas
If its undercharged, you can fill up with refrigerant gas only when the clutch is engaged and the system vacuum is on. Verify that the clutch is spinning with the compressor, then open up the tank tap, or pull the aerosol-can trigger, a few seconds at a time until the gauge reads 40psi. Draining an overcharged system into an empty tank with a vacuum inside it will be similar to refilling;the system with a tank of gas.
Also Check: What Do You Need To Get Your Car Inspected
A/c Recharge Services At Firestone Complete Auto Care
If you’re in need of a car A/C recharge service, look no further than Firestone Complete Auto Care. We offer an A/C Evacuate and Recharge, where we void the air conditioning system of old refrigerant and then recharge the system with new refrigerant. We then inspect the car A/C system’s pressure and temperature control to make sure everything is working correctly for a car air conditioner recharge service.
How Often Does A Car A/c Need To Be Recharged
If your air conditioning is functioning as it should, the refrigerant in your vehicle shouldn’t leak. Though small leaks may occur over time, they are usually not enough to impact A/C performance. For this reason, there is normally not a maintenance or service schedule for recharging your air conditioning system. The best way to tell if it is time for an A/C recharge is to pay attention to your system’s performance. If it feels like your vehicle isn’t blowing as cold as it used to or has stopped blowing cold completely, it might be time to schedule your appointment for an A/C recharge service.
Also Check: Does My Car Have Sirius Xm
How To Get A Compressor To Engage
Reading the pressure of the AC system isnt possible if the compressor isnt engaged. In case the middle part of the pulley that is attached to the compressor isnt moving when you start the engine, you should try adding half of the refrigerant can.;
If the issue persists after you added fresh refrigerant to the system, you must take your car to the mechanic.;
Listen For The A/c Clutch To Engage
When you turn on your vehicle’s air conditioner, if you listen closely, you will hear a ‘click’ which signifies the clutch engaging. If the Freon levels are too low, the clutch will fail to engage which means there’s not enough refrigerant for the compressor to pressurize. In other words, your air conditioning system has nothing to work with!
Listen for the clutch to engage after turning on your A/C
Visible Refrigerant Leaks
Don’t Miss: What Kind Of Speakers Are In My Car
Diy A/c Charging Does Not Measure By Weight
Once your A/C system is completely empty, we just need to know how much refrigerant goes into your particular car’s system. This specification comes direct from the manufacturer, and it tells us how much refrigerant to add by weight. By contrast, DIY A/C recharge cans have a simple pressure gauge. That means, even if you get the pressure to the correct level, the actual weight of the refrigerant in the system is a mystery. If there’s too much, the system can be damaged; and if there’s not enough, your A/C might not work well. Instead, trust the pros who can properly measure the refrigerant going into your car.
How To Recharge Your Car Air Conditioning
When your cars air conditioning begins to lose power and doesnt blow cool air, it may be time for an AC recharge. Recharging your AC means adding more refrigerant to your AC system to allow the air to start blowing cold again.
Important to know: recharging your AC is a temporary fix to a likely bigger problem. If your system is indeed missing refrigerant, your air conditioning system has a leak and needs to be inspected and repaired with a certified mechanic. Refrigerant does not evaporate in an airtight system, so air must be leaking in.
- Note: Some older vehicles cannot have their AC unit recharged. These vehicles generally fall before the year 1995 and use an R12 refrigerant no longer made. The only option is AC replacement.
Though an ac recharge can be completed at home, it is still considered a more professional repair, as it contains work with hazardous liquid and is best left for a certified mechanic.
Also Check: What Happens If You Damage A Rental Car
Choosing The Bestrefrigerant For Your Cars Ac System
ACsystems on vehicles produced before 1994, used freon or R-12 that was composedout of chlorofluorocarbon . However, the Montreal Protocol banned the useof CFC in auto and all other industries, because it was damaging the Earthsozone layer.
Sincethen, car AC systems use only R-134a freon that doesnt contain CFC and isfound to be environmentally friendly. The US-based car manufacturers switchedfrom R-134a to HFO-1234yf in 2013 because it has no impact on the environment.
Products like A/C Pro ACP-100 or Arctic Freeze are based on the R-134a formula, while products based on the HFO-1234yf are also commercially available. However, none of the refrigerants you can find on the market are based on the R-12 formula.
Itis advisable to consult with your mechanic if you are not sure whichrefrigerant you should add to your vehicles AC system. Whats more, you shouldkeep in mind that adding too much freon to the AC system can cause significantdamage to it.;
Find The Refrigerant Fill Port
After you open the cars hood you will have to find the refrigerant fill port that is located on the left side of the engine bay. The fill port looks like a small metal pipe that has rubber hose at either end.;
The refrigerant fill port should be near the part of the engine bay that is called a firewall, and you should just follow the larger of two hoses that protrude from the firewall.;
Throughout this process, you shouldnt touch parts of the engine bay or the high-pressure hoses since they can be very hot.;
The refrigerant fill port has a plastic lid at the top and you must remove it in order to start refilling the cars AC system with the refrigerant.;
Recommended Reading: What Is The Safest Car For Teenage Drivers
Ac Clutch Not Engaging
If you have set your air conditioning unit to the coldest setting, you should hear a clicking noise as the clutch engages. This is due to a signal that is sent from the air conditioning pressure switch.
When the pressure level inside the air conditioning system drops to a level which is too low, the switch will not work and the clutch will not engage. This means that the air conditioning system cannot circulate any cool air and it will not function.
How To Recharge The A/c In A Car
When the air conditioning unit in a car stops blowing cool air, it may be time for an A/C recharge. To recharge the A/C in a car means adding more refrigerant to the system and correctly pressurizing it to allow the air to start blowing cold again.;This car A/C repair does not take long or cost much to do as a DIY project, but it does require a bit of care and the right equipment. Well talk a little bit about how your cars A/C works, signs that you might have a leak, and how to recharge the A/C system.
Recommended Reading: Where Is The Car Show This Weekend
For Items With A Push Button Dispenser:
Shake can well. Start engine and set A/C to maximum cooling.
Locate A/C low-side service port and connect recharge hose.
Depress the top button. Allow contents to flow into the A/C.
While charging, rotate can between 12 oclock and 3 oclock every two to three seconds while continually agitating the can back and forth.
Continue this process until the correct amount of refrigerant is charged into the A/C system or the can is empty.
When the can feels empty, hold it upside down for one minute to dispense remaining contents before removing from service port. DO NOT OVERCHARGE SYSTEM!
Determine Ambient Air Temperature
If the temperature of the air is 55°F or below, do not charge the vehicle. It is also always recommended to use acharging hose with a gauge. The refrigerant packaging should contain a chart like the one below for determining what pressure to charge the system depending on the ambient air temperature. If no chart is provided, use the A/C pressure chart below this list as a general guide. Also, different AC systems can have different recommended pressures, so its worth taking a look in a repair manual or online to determine the right pressure for your vehicle. Following these guidelines when recharging the system will ensure the system can operate efficiently. It is important to note, charging an AC system with just a single gauge attached to the refrigerant is possible, but it is always recommended to use a complete set of manifold gauges, which monitor both the high and low side pressures. These gauges are available for sale, and for rent at most AutoZone stores. At this point, start the vehicle and set the air conditioning to MAX setting. Locate the vehicles AC compressor for reference, and its important to monitor what the AC clutch is doing. When the AC compressor is disengaged, only the outside of the pulley will turn. When its engaged, the entire clutch assembly will turn, driving the compressor. Your compressor is designed to not engage at all when refrigerant pressures, or volume is too low.
Read Also: What Gas Stations Accept Synchrony Car Care
Adding Refrigerant To Acars Ac System
Eventhough recharging a cars AC system isnt an overly complicated process, youwill still need the right equipment for the job. Besides the refrigerant withthe gauge, you are also going to need a thermometer and a pair of protectiveglasses.
Thefirst thing you will have to do is test the pressure. You can do this bylocating the low side pressure service port that is commonly located on thepassenger side of the engine bay.
Proceedto attach the recharge hose to it, avoid pulling the refrigerants trigger,because you might end up releasing freon into the atmosphere.
Youshould turn on your vehicle at this point, set the AC settings to the maximumand monitor the gauge. If the reading is below 40psi that means that the ACsystem needs to be recharged. Attach the refrigerant can to the hose and pullthe trigger.
Holdthe trigger for approximately ten seconds, and check the gauge once you releaseit in order to make sure that you are not overcharging the system. All readingsabove 40psi indicate that that the cars AC system is overcharged.
You should contact your mechanic if the gauge readings show values that exceed 40psi, but if this is not the case you should simply check the temperature inside your vehicle. If the AC system is working properly, the temperature near the ventilator should be around 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Click here if you would like to find more tips for inexperienced drivers.
Aircon Freon Charging In The Philippines
Here in the Philippines, there are a lot of automotive services that focus on fixing car A/C issues. And one of those issues is low Freon levels.
If you followed our Aircon Cleaning Service article, then youll have read a list of our recommended shops located around Metro Manila, as well as several in Cebu.
If you don’t want to go to Banawe, QC, then Google Maps is your friend
When it comes to aircon freon refill cost in the Philippines, it may vary from Php 800 to Php 1,500. This is because some shops will actually attempt to find the cause of the Freon leak using UV dyes.
Other, cheaper options will simply recharge your car A/Cs Freon a temporary fix as it will likely leak again.
You May Like: Where To Copy Car Key