AC Compressor spraying air and green fluid!!! - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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Old 02-12-2014
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AC Compressor spraying air and green fluid!!!

I am in the process of removing the lower intake on my 99 Ranger 4.0. I was unscrewing the AC Compressor to get it out of the way and also started to unscrew a bolt on the backside of the compressor because it wasn't moving well due to the metal tube on the backside. I think this is the tube to the condenser? Anyways it started spraying air and green fluid everywhere. I got it to stop for now but if I tighten or loosen the bolt it seems to spray. Also it looks like a green o ring or gasket of sort is showing now which I don't remember. What is it and what should I do? Thanks in advance
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Old 02-12-2014
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yea you just blew all the refrigerant and oil out of your ac system.....
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Old 02-12-2014
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yea you just blew all the refrigerant and oil out of your ac system.....
I thought so. It still has some left and either way I go on the bolt it lets it out and sprays everywhere. Anyway to discharge it or anything? Where should I go from here?
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Old 02-12-2014
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AC shop
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Old 02-12-2014
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AC shop
Is there anything else I can do ? I'm skins of in a bind. I am in the process if replacing intake gaskets and I don't want to leave that bolt on the back of the ac compressor unscrewed partially. Should I just go for it and tighten it back down and hope it stops spraying?
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Old 02-12-2014
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Your going to need to tighten it if the o-ring is showing i doubt it will seal and you should probably go ahead and bleed it down but catch the freon don't just leave it on the ground! Also make sure you turn of the A/C if you drive it because the freon also acts as a lubricant for the compressor and you will fry it quick if it kicks on when its low or empty. An A/C shop will have to vacuum it down and recharge it not something you can do with the $30 bottle from auto zone although many have tried.
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Old 02-12-2014
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Your going to need to tighten it if the o-ring is showing i doubt it will seal and you should probably go ahead and bleed it down but catch the freon don't just leave it on the ground! Also make sure you turn of the A/C if you drive it because the freon also acts as a lubricant for the compressor and you will fry it quick if it kicks on when its low or empty. An A/C shop will have to vacuum it down and recharge it not something you can do with the $30 bottle from auto zone although many have tried.
Ya I am pretty sure it will not seal, I think it will just pinch the o-ring if anything.

Should I bleed it just by loosening that bolt (I believe Ford calls it the AC manifold retaining bolt) or is there a better way to bleed it? What is the danger to leaving Freon on the ground? I'm asking because I am sure there is some there now from last nights incident.

Lastly, why is it you can't just use the $30 bottle from auto zone or wherever? Would I need to give an A/C shop any specific instructions? Just trying to learn about it all so nothing like this happens in the future. Thanks for you help!
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Old 02-12-2014
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Theres a high and low valve to add freon and the valve can be removed with a tire valve stem remover if you just crack it the pressure will release and it may spray a little but not as bad as from the line. Don't let it sit on the ground because it is toxic and can contaminate the water supply as well as kill any curious animals plus they can fine you for it. And the bottle is only made to recharge a purged system like a tire the pressure can bleed down over time but the valves keep air out so the system just becomes low and you can refill it with those auto zone bottles. once there is air in the system it will just push the air bubble around in the lines that could cause damage to the components.
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Old 02-12-2014
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Theres a high and low valve to add freon and the valve can be removed with a tire valve stem remover if you just crack it the pressure will release and it may spray a little but not as bad as from the line. Don't let it sit on the ground because it is toxic and can contaminate the water supply as well as kill any curious animals plus they can fine you for it. And the bottle is only made to recharge a purged system like a tire the pressure can bleed down over time but the valves keep air out so the system just becomes low and you can refill it with those auto zone bottles. once there is air in the system it will just push the air bubble around in the lines that could cause damage to the components.
Ok that makes sense, should I crack the high and low valve or just the high?

Thank you for your help
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Old 02-12-2014
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I'd say high side up by the heater box just follow the lines thats a high point so it will leak the least amount of freon.
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Old 02-13-2014
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Here is what I would do:

1. Get that bolt down all the way while making sure the oring is put into place. If you loose all of your Freon in the process, then its just gonna happen.

2. Get your self one of those can to low port adapters:



and about 3 cans of 12 oz 134a (your vehicle holds 30 oz) and refill your system to the green part of the gauge.

The only time you need to vacuum your system is when the system is total open, allowing all freon to purge AND let air back in. This takes a little bit of time.

The worst case scenario for you, is that all your freon flows out when adjusting that bolt. Actually not all freon will flow out, because once the internal pressure reaches the same pressure as the outside (1 atmosphere) the freon will stop moving and will stay in the system. Not much but it will stay in since freon is heavier than air. The only time air will enter the system is when all freon pressure is gone and the system has been sitting "open" for a long time, or if you remove a component such as a tube, condenser, evaporator core, etc.

The reason you vacuum the system for when the system is open for a long time is that there is air in the system and air contains moisture. This will hurt the compressor as moisture is not able to be compressed. When you lower the pressure in the system by vacuuming it, it also lowers the boiling point of the moisture to that of the ambient temperature. This will boil out all the moisture and evacuate it from the system.

Being low won't hurt your system because the compressor will not kick on due to the low pressure via the low pressure switch on the lines.

When you are refilling the system your compressor won't run until there is enough pressure on the low side to initiate the compressor clutch engagement.

Most likely the pressure on the low side will be 0 or very close to it when you first start adding freon to the system. The compressor most likely won't turn on at first. Since the cans are pressurized and the pressure of the can is greater than the lines. Refridgerant will flow from the can into the system without the compressor on. Once there is enough pressure in the lines the compressor will kick on and pull from the low side to pressurize the high side. This will drop the pressure on the low side and allow more and more freon to be "sucked" into the system.
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