Anyone re-charge their AC? - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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  #1  
Old 07-07-2012
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Icon2 Anyone re-charge their AC?

So my ac is not as cold.. .it's actually cool but on these 100+ degree days it's killing me...

Feels kinda warm. Being that my truck is from 2001 it probably needs recharged.

So I've ordered the following:

Amazon.com: FJC 6761 R134a Aluminum Manifold Gauge Set: Automotive Amazon.com: FJC 6761 R134a Aluminum Manifold Gauge Set: Automotive

Amazon Amazon

Amazon.com: FJC Vacuum Pump, 3.0 CFM: Automotive Amazon.com: FJC Vacuum Pump, 3.0 CFM: Automotive

Along with r134a.

What am I looking for pressure sides on both the low and high?

Also where is the high pressure port located on a 2.3l engine?

I know I have to vaccuum the system first then I can purge some of the atmosphere air then I can begin to look at the gauges and fill the system from the low pressure side while the truck is on and on AC and the 4th fan position... Just wondering who has done this and can give me some pointers.

I bought all the above because it was going to be a MIN of $500 for a shop to look and or re-charge. Now that I have everything I can save money. Not looking for a you should just take it to a shop responses...lol

I've youtubed a bunch and see something but most people dont' use the gauges and just pour the entire bottle in which is not what I plan on doing...

Thanks,
-Nigel
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  #2  
Old 07-07-2012
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I know you are not supposed to pressurize both the high and low side. I forgot which side you are supposed to fill as I do not have AC.


We used 4 cans on my friend 94 Z28 and his AC is artic cold in a matter of 40 seconds. Not sure if we over filled it, not sure if we care. it works
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Old 07-07-2012
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You fill on the low side. I don't know where the orifice is located, i can look it up if nobody else knows.

You need to vacuum the system, let the vacuum hold for about 3 or 4 minutes. if you found cans of JUST R134a you'll need to find one that contains about 2oz of oil for the compressor.
but i believe most cans you buy at the parts store contain a bit of oil.
after you've held vacuum for a bit, begin to charge the system, hook up the can to the low side. and hold the can UPSIDE down, you want all the liquid in the system instead of the gas.

IIRC, Rangers take about 1lb, 6oz of R134a.
I don't know the pressure specifics, my gauge is old and has a little green zone where its supposed to be.
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Old 07-07-2012
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In Wisconsin we can go the parts store and get 134a in a can. Can comes with gauge. I've used it on one truck for a whole year now.
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Old 07-07-2012
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I was going to get the little can with the gauge on it but everthing I've read says they are not accurate.. .so that's why I purhcased all the above.

StxDangerRanger:

I got the vaccumm pump, so when I create a vaccuum on the system and disconnect the pump how does it not loose pressure?

I think I am just a little confused about all the pieces. I do know that just like you said you fill to the LP side.. and the gauge set I have I would keep both the Low and HIGH closed, check the pressure then go from there. I would then vaccuum the system out, let it sit like you said, then my question above still stand on how does it not pressurize again..etc. I would then start to fill the system of the LP side from the guages by only having the LP side open and keeping the HP side closed.

I will look on my gauges when I get home to verify that they have the markings on them to indicate how much or a good zone for it to be on..etc.

I'm just not sure where the HP side is so I can get a reading.

Thanks again,
-Nigel
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Old 07-07-2012
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The Valves are a type of backflow valve. unless something is connected to it, it seals itself.

On your hoses you ordered, you just need to make sure that the ***** are closed all the way before disconnecting, otherwise you will loose the vacuum.
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  #7  
Old 07-07-2012
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So youre saying that you dont know where the fill valves are and which one is highlb and which one is low lb? ill go snap pics if you need them. they look just like normal american bike valves.

very similar to a fuel lb test spot just not on the fuel rail (duh)
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  #8  
Old 07-07-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NewShockerGuy View Post
What am I looking for pressure sides on both the low and high?
System pressures will vary depending on outside ambient air temperatures combined with relative humidity (Ref the following charts).

Low Pressure Side:



High Pressure Side:



Quote:
Originally Posted by NewShockerGuy View Post
Also where is the high pressure port located on a 2.3l engine?
The High Pressure service port is located on the line that runs between the compressor and condenser on the 2.3L.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NewShockerGuy View Post
I know I have to vaccuum the system first then I can purge some of the atmosphere air then I can begin to look at the gauges and fill the system from the low pressure side while the truck is on and on AC and the 4th fan position... Just wondering who has done this and can give me some pointers.
To start, ensure the valve wheels are in the closed position. Connect the blue hose to the low side and the red hose to the high side. Position the yellow hose in a safe direction as the old refrigerant will come out this hose. With the engine off, slowly open the blue and red wheels, allowing the the old refrigerant to discharge. As the pressure drops, open the wheels a little more until the system is empty. Don't get in a hurry.

Once the system is empty, connect the yellow hose to the Vacuum pump and turn it on. Allow it to run for at least 30 minutes. Close off both valve wheels and then turn off the pump. Note the vacuum reading on the low pressure gauge. Let it sit for about five minutes. If the vacuum reading rises more than a few inches you may have a leak. If it held steady or only raised a few inches, turn the vacuum pump back on and open both wheels and allow it to run five more minutes. Close both wheels and turn the pump off.

Remove the yellow hose from the pump and connect it to the refrigerant can. With the can in the upright position open the cans valve. At the gauge manifold, slowly unscrew the yellow hose until you hear/feel refrigerant escaping. Allow this for about 5 seconds to purge any air from this hose then re-tighten it. Now slowly open the blue wheel, allowing refrigerant into the system. Turn the can upside down allowing liquid refrigerant to flow into the system. Once the can is empty, close off the blue wheel and remove the can.

Continue adding until you've added the recommend amount of refrigerant repeating the bleeding procedure of the yellow hose before opening the blue wheel. If you're having difficulty adding the remaining refrigerant, you'll have to start the engine and engage the AC system. Proceed adding refrigerant carefully through the low side by tipping the can between the upright and its side, using your hands to cup and warm the can as you go. You don't want to push liquid into the system at this point as you can damage the compressor. Add a little and close off the blue wheel. Let it run a few minutes and note the pressures (Ref Charts above) Continue until you've added proper amount specified and or pressures are within specs. Check dash air outlet temps and if nice and cool enjoy.

"Warning" under not circumstances open the red valve with the engine running and the AC engaged or you may wind up with an exploding can of refrigerant!
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Anyone re-charge their AC?-2009-07-02_015445_02sable1.gif   Anyone re-charge their AC?-2009-07-02_015336_02sable.gif  

Last edited by Rev; 07-09-2012 at 08:43 PM.
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  #9  
Old 07-07-2012
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I would just go and get a can of AC-PRO from the auto parts place for less than $50. You charge on the low side which is the bigger of the two lines (aluminum). If you google that product, there is also a how-to video for it. There is no need to vacuum out the system unless you are going to work on it (disconnect a hose, remove a component).
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  #10  
Old 07-07-2012
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Hmmm Excellent information!!!

So you only vaccuum the system if you are completely draining it of ALL r134a is this correct?

If I turn the truck on just to read where the current settings are at I would not need to do anything other than hooking up the manifold gauges and making sure they are in the CLOSED position.

If it IS low, is it necessary to completely empty the system or can I use teh recommended method of filling it up slowly watching the gauge?

I have read on different things that you can and should recharge while the car/truck is on and the AC is on? That way you can monitor the temp inside the car and verify after you added a little r134a a couple mins later to see if the temp drops in the car using the thermometer..etc. If not then continue...

So far this is excellent information!!

Thank you!

-Nigel
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  #11  
Old 07-07-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NewShockerGuy View Post
Hmmm Excellent information!!!

So you only vaccuum the system if you are completely draining it of ALL r134a is this correct?
Rule of thumb, you'd normally only evacuate the system if you had to open it up to replace something or if the system has run empty due to a leak.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NewShockerGuy View Post
If I turn the truck on just to read where the current settings are at I would not need to do anything other than hooking up the manifold gauges and making sure they are in the CLOSED position.
Yes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NewShockerGuy View Post
If it IS low, is it necessary to completely empty the system or can I use teh recommended method of filling it up slowly watching the gauge?
If its a little low, just refill as needed. Look through this link Ranger Forums

Quote:
Originally Posted by NewShockerGuy View Post
I have read on different things that you can and should recharge while the car/truck is on and the AC is on? That way you can monitor the temp inside the car and verify after you added a little r134a a couple mins later to see if the temp drops in the car using the thermometer..etc. If not then continue...
If you're just topping off the system yes you do it with it running.
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  #12  
Old 07-08-2012
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we just topped off the AC in my outlander. Dad has done this stuff before, my first time. I'm going to try to top off my Ranger with his gauges.
Anyway, one thing he mentioned when you pierce the 134a can, let a little out via the yellow line...just unscrew it enough to let some out. Do the same to the blue/LP line. This removes the ambient air from the line so that you are only adding refrigerant, not ambient air to the system.
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  #13  
Old 07-09-2012
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So here are two videos I took of the ranger:

First one is with the AC on in normal AC,. not MAX AC. with position 3 on fan.

See how the gauge drops like that?




This second video is right after the first video with the truck OFF.


Not sure now what to do?

Thanks,
-Nigel
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  #14  
Old 07-09-2012
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Only difference between MAX and regular ac is where it draws air in at.


The first video it looks to me as if your are short cycling. Did you add freon yet?

The second video is means nothing.
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  #15  
Old 07-09-2012
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The first video is of what it does now. I did not add any freon to the system at all.

I am about to once I get the can tomorrow.

Do I want to do it while it's running like that or while it's off? I read in the other thread posted above that we want the LP side to be around 25-30psi. Just wondering on the above question via on or off...etc.

Thanks so much,
-Nigel

Last edited by NewShockerGuy; 07-09-2012 at 09:19 PM.
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Old 07-09-2012
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While its running with the can upside down.
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  #17  
Old 07-09-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StxDangerRanger View Post
While its running with the can upside down.
I remember when we did the Outlander, the 134a can said to agitate the can slowly from 12 o'clock to 3 o'clock. bottle came from carquest.

why would you want to turn the can upside down?
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  #18  
Old 07-10-2012
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That's what I'm wondering as well too. I've read that when you are re-charging with the car/truck on you should not turn it upside down because you don't want the liquid to go in.. others say to keep the can upright, and then read that you keep it upside down the entire time...

Just don't want to screw anything up. But the above question from ccernst is what I'm wondering as well.

Doesn't this force liquid in the system? Do we want that or do we just want the gas?

-Nigel
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  #19  
Old 07-10-2012
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If the can has a straw inside you turn it upside down, if it does not have a straw you keep it upright.

Read the can and do what it says.
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Old 07-10-2012
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I've always used the basic 12oz (i think, looks about as tall as a can of beer) they usually do NOT have straws in them.
However, you want to turn the can upside down because your supposed to charge with the liquid. I'm not sure why now that your questioning it, I've always seen the old school mechanics that way and it hasn't broke yet, so why fix it ?
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  #21  
Old 07-12-2012
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Awesome thanks for the clarifcation!

I do have one last question as I am about to fill it up today.

So with the gauges that I have and keeping the valves in the CLOSED position.

When I hook the can to the tap, and fill the line with the r134a, I bleed it off to to hear the hiss then close the middle connection to the hose.

Do I then turn the middle hose barb and then OPEN the left side LP ****? Or what is the best way to do this? Also do I completely open the valve on the LP side or just slightly crack it..etc?

Sorry if these questions are stupid, just didn't know if there is a right way and wrong way.

Thanks,
-Nigel
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  #22  
Old 07-12-2012
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If you're only recharging the system because it ain't cold enough, and you're sure there are no leaks on any part of the AC system, you only need to refill the system with freon. If you had a leak and/or fixed/messed with the compressor or anything else from AC system somehow (broken hose or whatever), then you need freon and oil. That's why some cans need to be shaken from 12 to 3 o'clock (only recharging freon), and some need to be held upside down (recharging freon and oil).
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  #23  
Old 07-12-2012
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Icon2

So now I started filling it.. the compressor isn't turning and the pressure on the LOW side was at 90 psi... so I started to let tehe air out since I guess I overcharged it. Now the high side is at like 50psi and the low side is at around 30 and the temp inside the cabin blowing out is 110 degrees..

What did I do wrong. Should I just completely drain the system and then start again?

This can't be this hard and I f'ed it up...

Please help :-(

EDIT:


So I completely emptied the entire system and now I am vaccuuming the entire system out... it's at -30 psi on the LOW side now...

What is this on the gauges:



When I unscrew or tighten this down nothing happens.. is something supposed to happen. When the valves opend I can completely unscrew this and nothing comes out...



Thanks,
-Nigel
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  #24  
Old 07-12-2012
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On a completely empty system and vacuummed how many cans of r134a should be added? I can't find this information anywhere.?

-Nigel
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  #25  
Old 07-12-2012
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So I put one entire can in and the system was at 90 degrees..

Started to put the 2nd can in and probably go about half in and it was at 71 degrees... then the LOW side pressure went to 90PSI and the compressor stopped spinning... wtf is going on??

Thanks,
-Nigel
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