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DIY - Red Tek conversion
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markz2004
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2008 1:58 pm    Post subject: DIY - Red Tek conversion Reply with quote

Moderator Edit:
This thread is full of great information but has grown to be quite lengthy.

There have been two summaries done, one by djkeev and one by Howesight.

These summaries are lengthy in themselves!

These Two posts are now here on the opening post ..... hopefully they will help new readers.

djkeev's summary is found on page 43...

djkeev wrote:
OK, I read all of the 43 Pages of this forum..........
http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=2...mp;start=0

I sat with a notebook, took notes, followed the frequent bunny trails of links as well. All told I've four evenings of reading invested!
It wasn't all for naught but a lot of the content here was mind numbing and there was also some scary reading considering the erroneous advice freely given to others!

Here is the Cliff's Notes (Dave's Notes) version of the 43 pages.......
------------------------

How to repair and rebuild the Non Functioning or Poorly Functioning Rear Mounted Air Conditioner in YOUR Vanagon to work marvelously!
--------------------------

I read a lot, I took notes as I read and while I haven't yet done this task, I'm gathering bits and getting ready to!

Helpful reads.....
------------

https://bostig.zendesk.com/categories/search?utf8=...mit=Search
Click on Adding Air and then parts 2, 3 & 4 as well.
------------

http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=2...mp;start=0

As of Sept 5, 2014 there are 43 pages to wade through, most of it repetitive and a lot of it is simply drivel........
--------------

http://www.redtek.com/win_12a_prod.html

Everything you'll ever want to know about the RED TEK product line
-------------

http://www.hychill.com.au/pdf/hcm_e.pdf
Updated link........
http://hychill.com.au/content/3-info/hychill-manual.pdf

This is an Australian company with a similar product. Their guide is interesting and helpful, also can be a little confusing with so many charging valves!
Nonetheless, an excellent read! (Thanks for the link farf!)
-----------

http://www.epatest.com/609/manual/609_section4.html

Accept Air Conditioning practices, agree or disagree, here they are.....
--------------

http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=5...mp;start=0

A very good write up about rebuilding your AC system along with a well written step by step guide.
---------------

http://www.teamec.be/cms_files/Flushing%20and%20Cleaning(EN).pdf

How to flush an AC system
-------------

http://www.van-cafe.com/home/van/smartlist_13/1986_1991_vanagon_automatic_transmission.html

Van Cafe an Excellent Vanagon Parts Supplier
---------------

http://www.busdepot.com

Bus Depot an excellent Vanagon Parts Supplier
----------------

http://www.gowesty.com

Go Westy an excellent Vanagon parts supplier
--------------

http://southeastairinc.com/main.html#1,0

SouthEast Air, a proven AC component supplier.
-----------------

http://nostalgicac.com

Nostalgic Air, A proven AC component supplier
-------------------


http://www.hosewarehouse.com

Hose Warehouse, a supplier of hoses, fittings, tools, etc.
-----------

http://www.vintageair.com

Vintage Air, a supplier of components and kits for AC systems.
-----------

1) Make sure you understand how Air Conditioning works before you do any work on these, the gas is flammable, the pressures can be extremely high and the potential for injury is very real.

2) NEVER CHARGE YOUR SYSTEM VIA THE HIGH PRESSURE PORT!!!!!!!
The can of refrigerant could be over pressurized thus causing it to burst! When it does burst, it's taking fingers, skin and maybe even your eyes with it!

3) Always wear safety goggles, maybe a full face shield and gloves to protected yourself in the event that something does go wrong, bad wrong!

4) Heed the Advice of Terry Kay (TK), "Do not short cut this process--you'll wind up wasting a bunch of refrigerant in the process checking out how the system is going to function."

******************


1) Use Red Tek, it's the best available option currently available today, Envirosafe is an option as well. They are a Hydro Carbon Refrigerant.

2) If using the original compressor that came to market running R12, realize that it came with Mineral Oil (MO) as a lubricant. MO does NOT play well with others so the best advice it to not change oils and continue to run MO in your system. Do not use any oil charge products for it introduces non compatible oils into your system.

3) If you replace your compressor, you've got a choice in oils to use but most new units ship with PAG oil in them, flush out your system, drain the compressor and make the switch to Ester Oils, this is the oil Red Tek ships in their oil charge cans.

4) Bleed out your existing cooling gas, be environmentally savvy and pay a shop to recover it, or be irresponsible and bleed it into the atmosphere! If you do choose to be irresponsible, at least be safe, hook a charging hose to the system and submerge the venting end into a bucket of water to cut the danger factor of the gas significantly.

5) Remove your compressor from the engine, yes, unbolt it and take it off.
Rotate the compressor but hand, it is smooth and quiet? If not, replace it.
Pull out the side plug and drain it into a container, CATCH THE OIL! You want to know how much was in there!
Now hold it on end, pulley up and rotate the compressor which will discharge even more oil.

6) Refill the compressor with 5.1oz of oil, my moneys on using Mineral Oil but....... You need to choose for yourself.

7) Put the plug back in and return it to the engine.

8 ) Disconnect the Receiver/Dryer from your system, you are going to put in a new one right? Compare it with the new one before discarding and verify that it's the same unit. Do not uncap it yet, the less atmospheric air that gets exposed to the interior of this unit the better it will be.

9) If you are reusing your existing Hoses, Condenser and Evaporator, you want to clean it all really well. It would be absolutely best to remove the items from the vehicle, hose them off, and use a cleaning agent to flush out all of the interior debris so affectionately known as "Snot".

10) If you choose not to remove components, at least disconnect each unit and flush each unit inside and hose the exteriors clean as a separate entity, flush the interior piping as much as you must until the cleaner solvent runs clear, flush in both directions. Disconnecting allows you to install new sealing Orings at each junction in the system.
Clamp some common heater or other similar sized hose onto you AC component fittings to allow you to control the exit if your AC "Snot" use compressed air to blow out the solvent as you capture it in a container.
Use a dedicated AC line flush or use truck brake line cleaner antifreeze. Whatever cleaner you use be careful, these agents can hurt you if splashed into your eyes or onto more sensitive skin.

11) It is advised to install a new Expansion Valve and why not? For $25 it's cheap insurance on you possibly wasting you $60 of charging gas when you later discover that it is bad!

12) It is STRONGLY advised that you go through the effort of pulling your Evaporator and removing it for it is highly likely to be plugged with decades of dirt and crud. You should also service your Blower Motor while you are in there. Yes, it's a major PITA but very necessary for cold AC.

13) When reinstalling your AC components you need to install oil into various components as you do so. There is a method to the madness here! According to Bentley....... You are installing 8oz of oil,
5.1 went into your compressor, that leaves 2.9 to put into the lines and components.
2oz goes into the Evaporator,
0.3oz into the Receiver/Dryer,
0.3oz into the Low Pressure Hose and
0.3oz into the High Pressure Hose.
How do you get it in? Measure it and pour or get an aerosol can of your selected oil.

14) Use a drop or two of your selected oil type onto the Orings and various connection glanges and nuts as you assemble your AC system. Work clean! VERY VERY CLEAN!!!!!

15) The Bentley states that the entire AC system takes 50.75 oz of R12......... One 6oz can of Red Tek is equivalent to 18oz of R12........ Some math........18+18+18= 54 .......... Hmmmmm most say to install 3 cans of Red Tek and one 4oz Can of Red Tek Proseal........ That's 58 oz of product. They also have 4oz can of Dye Charge to check for leaks with a black light........... If you are doing a system using new or well flushed and resealed components........ the Pro Seal is probably not needed. The Dye Charge may be a wise thing to install anyway.

16) Use an evacuation pump to produce a VACUUM in your system, allow it to pump for three hours if you have a quality pump, maybe up to eight hours if you've got an under powered cheapie version! Turn off the pump, disconnect the gauges and remove the R134a adapters (they can leak) and let it sit for a day, hook up the gauges and see if you've maintained a vacuum, if the vacuum is gone is time to find the leak! DO NOT CUT CORNERS ON THE EVACUATION PROCESS, DO IT ALL OR DON'T BOTHER! A little moisture in the system WILL cause odd pressures and poor cooling.

17) To check for leaks it is best to install a can of gas, and maybe a can of dye if you don't have a sniffer. You can use soapy water and watch for bubbles as well. Some say that you can compress the system using nitrogen or compressed air but only up to 50-60 psi, any more is NOT favored. Some feel that using compressed air to check for leaks is a waste of time and possibly will damage the system.

18 ) Fix the leak and evacuate the system again to verify the leak is fixed.

19) Once reassembled and no leaks are verified, you may charge it up. You want 3 cans of Red Tek, four if you opt for no Dye Charge or Proseal.if you are prone to being stupid, disconnect the high pressure line before charging! Do NOT CHARGE VIA THE HIGH PRESSURE PORT!!!!!!! Hook up a can to the adapter but before fastening the fill hose to the gauge, crack it open and let just a little to bleed out purging the hose of air. Attack the charging hose to the gauge set. SET UP A GOOD FAN BLOWING ON YOUR CONDENSER IN FRONT OF THE CAR!!!!!!! Start the engine turn on the AC. Now slowly open only the low pressure port, the system Vacuum should suck in almost the entire can.

Do you put in gas or liquid? A lot of bad posts here on that. Back in the Early 70's with R12 I was taught to NEVER put in liquid for you risk the chance of compressor damage. Some claim you can do can one with liquid but not any of the following cans. Maybe you can, maybe you can't? Why risk compressor damage?

Just keep the can upright and allow the gas into the system. Hold it in your hand and swirl it about, your body warmth is encouraging the cold liquid to vaporize in the can and enter the system.

20) Once the first can is in, shut off the low pressure port, shut off the valve/disconnect the hose and remove the can from the adapter, put on your proSeal and/or Dye Charge as you see fit. At this time hook the high pressure gauge back up so you can monitor pressures and you now know not to be stupid and blow off your hand........right? Again bleed the hose feed your chosen additive and hook it up, soon, if not already the compressor will kick on and start sucking in the gas, watch the gauges as it does and be aware of the pressures indicated on the gauges. Same procedures as before watching the gauges. When these cans are installed you will either 10oz or 14oz of gas in your system. You are aiming at approximately three cans in your system, a little more or a little less, you will determine this next.

21) Now hook up Red Tek can two and then can Three as needed. Don't put the full third can in, watch your gauges and start measuring output temperatures.

22) Optimal pressures? TK says 28-30 Low / 190-195 High....... Red Tek says 30-38 Low / 170 High and further says up to mid 40's Low but not over 180 High. You choose! There are also charts for temperature compensation on these pressures, they aren't set in stone! And can be quite confusing to the novice.

23) Once you are fully and optimally charged, which may take some experimentation, add a little, bleed a little, waiting between each adjustment until the coldest cold is achieved. That cold SHOULD be in the mid to upper 30's!



Suggested Parts........

Horizontal Flow Condenser
Nostalgic Air part # 54-1622


Howesight's summary is found on page 49...

Howesight wrote:
I am copying and pasting a long post I wrote on charging with RedTek. One warning I must emphasize: It is never a good idea to install any refrigerant as in liquid form while the compressor is running - - the compressor cannot compress a liquid and if liquid refrigerant gets into the compressor cylinders, severe damage to the compressor can occur as well as pressurizing the refrigerant can and possibly causing an explosion.

PLEASE NOTE THAT THE POST BELOW IS NOW EDITED AND CORRECTED FOR A SERIOUS ERROR I MADE IN THE ORIGINAL POST, THANKFULLY CAUGHT BY DENWOOD.

I made this post because no post I have seen before put all the small but important details for Red Tek installation in one place and I hated that I made so many mistakes when I did my install ( at http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=535444&highlight=diy+front+air+conditioning )

1. If there is no (or insufficient) refrigerant in the system, then the compressor clutch will not engage. The reason is there is a pressure sensitive switch in the system (on the high pressure line) that senses both overpressure and underpressure (hence the name, "binary switch").

2. Leaks do occur. If you are lucky, nobody has ever replaced the factory R12 refrigerant with R134A. If that is the case, things are much easier because you can use RedTek as a "drop in" refrigerant. The hoses age and decompose, causing both slow leaks and major leaks. Before doing anything, connect a gauge set to see what, if any, static (ie: compressor not running) pressure you have. If you have some pressure (say, 20 psi or more), that is a very good sign and means you have no major leaks. The simplest and easiest thing to do if this is your status is to go to an AC shop with your left rear pillar cover removed, to give access to the AC hoses, and have them suck it down to a 29 inches vacuum. Just before doing this, rotate the AC drive hub (the inner part on the compressor clutch) about 10 turns (clockwise) to get a little oil onto the compressor shaft seal. If it holds the vacuum for 30 minutes after shutting off the vacuum pump (be sure to close the valve on the gauge set when shutting off the vacuum pump), then your system does not have any leaks big enough to worry about. Now you are at a crossroad. There is a "super quick and dirty" route you can take which does not guarantee results, a somewhat quick and less dirty route, and the complete-do-it -right-guaranteed-to-work route. The only thing wasted in the both quick approaches is your time and about $50 worth of Red Tek each time.

3. The guaranteed to work process requires you to remove the evaporator box, clean out all the dust and detritus likely hiding there, open and flush the entire AC hoses, evaporator, condenser, remove compressor and drain oil (or replace compressor with new), replace Receiver Drier and replace expansion valve, replace any suspect hoses, and replace every o-ring in the system. This also requires you to have the system vacuumed down to 29 inches mercury a second time after the system is reassembled.

4. The super quick and dirty approach is to first check for some system pressure and, if it exists, vacuum down the system, replacing nothing and only installing the Red Tek as described below.

5. The "somewhat quick and less dirty" route is to replace the receiver-drier and all the O-rings that you can get at without busting a gut. Don't forget the O-rings at the various pressure sensors. Go to NAPA and buy new Schraeder valves for the service ports - - don't forget to apply mineral oil to the O-rings. Don't buy new - - instead, just grab a bit on your pinky finger from what you drain out of your receiver-drier, unless your NAPA store has mineral oil. Don't forget the O-rings on the compressor itself where the hose fittings attach - - they're not hard to get at and do leak in time. Again, this approach also requires you to have the system vacuumed down to 29 inches mercury a second time after the system is reassembled.

6. Regardless of which approach you take, now you can go home and install RedTek refrigerant. The instructions tell you not to install it into an AC system with a hard vacuum. Ignore that. Connect the RedTek charging hose to the Red Tek Can and then GET READY TO connect the other end to the high side service port. This really does require a helper to be ready to attach the charging hose to the high side service port while you hold the RedTek can and operate its valve.

7. Note that when the RedTek can is held valve side up, Red Tek vapour comes out. When you hold it "upside down" (with the valve on the bottom), liquid Red Tek comes out. Since your AC system has a vacuum, the first can of Red TEk goes in as a liquid and is sucked in by the vacuum. You do it this way to save time.

8. Now that you know everything, use this knowledge as follows: Purge the charging hose for a half a second (holding the can valve side up), and then have your helper connect the charging hose to the high-side service port. Purging just means to allow some RedTek vapour into the charging hose to displace any ambient air in that hose and thus prevent ambient air being admitted into the system. Once the hose is connected, turn the can so it is valve side down. You will hear the Red Tek going into your system. It is best to do all this in the shade and in the coolest place you can find. Red Tek , like most refrigerants, expands in proportion to the temperature of all the parts in your system and if they have been baking in the sun, you may not get the entire first can in.

The high side service port is the one with the Red cap in the pic below:

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


9. When you think the RedTek can is empty, shake it to check. If not, then use a hair drier to apply some heat to the can to expand the can contents to force the remainder in. You likely will not need to do this.

10. When you are finished emptying the first RedTek can into the system, DISCONNECT THE CHARGE HOSE AT THE SERVICE PORT, NOT AT THE RED TEK CAN. The reason for this is that it is possible that your system still may have a slight vacuum in it and you do not want to permit the system to suck in ambient air.

11. Now you will install the second RedTek can. This is done USING THE LOW SIDE PORT. In case you had any doubts at all about which is the low side port, the compressor itself has "S" and "D" cast into the compressor case near the pipe connections. "S" means "suction", indicating the low pressure side. "D" means "discharge", meaning the high pressure side. the pic below shows the compressor with the low side service port featuring a pale blue cap:

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.



Your caps might not even be in place, so note that the low pressure suction side attaches to a hose that is large diameter while the high side connects to a hos that is small diameter.

12. Use the same technique for attaching the RedTek charging hose, using a helper. You also need a third helper to sit in the driver's seat. Connect the charging hose to the Red Tek can, but don't pierce the can yet. Have both helpers ready. Pierce the RedTek seal with the can valve side up and for one second, purge the install line and while purging, have helper attach the snap-on RedTek fitting to the low side service port.


13. Get ready by having the helper in the driver seat turn on the AC temp switch to maximum cold and the evaporator fans on to high speed. Place a box fan in front of the condenser and set it on its highest speed. Now, open the valve on the RedTek spigot slightly and start the engine. HOLD THE RED TEK CAN "VALVE SIDE UP" AT ALL TIMES.

14. What is now happening is that the RedTek can is connected to the low pressure side of the system and the compressor is sucking vapourized RedTek rfefrigerant from the can. You will feel the can getting somewhat cold as a result of the refrigerant evaporating inside the Red Tek can. The reason you must hold the can valve side up (AND WITHOUT SHAKING THE CAN!) is to avoid sucking liquid RedTek into the compressor, which would ruin the compressor. Note that the process of sucking the RedTek into the low side of the system is much slower than installing the first can of Red Tek in liquid form under vacuum. (It is like boiling a pot of water and using the compressor to suck steam as compared to forcing liquid water into the system as was done with the first can. Hence, it takes much longer).

15. Have the helper in the driver's seat rev the engine to 2000 rpm and hold it there. Watch the gauge on the REdTek install hose. Once it reads about 20 psi, you are very close to full.

16. When that second can is empty, disconnect at the service port first, and then remove the RedTek can from the other end of the charge hose.

17. Now get your vent temp thermometer in place in a vent. Shut off the engine. Set up and connect can number three using the same procedure in 12, 13, 15, 16 above. Now start the engine and open the valve on the RedTek charging hose slightly and continue to add RedTek until your pressure reading (while the compressor is running) gets to around 22 or 23 psi. Shut the RedTek valve (it is not a very good valve and will still leak a bit of RedTek into the system, so be aware), keep the revs at 2,000 rpm and watch your thermometer. It will settle in at a certain temp, depending on ambient conditions. Make a note of the temp and now add more Red Tek (by opening the valve) until you pressure goes up by, say, 1 psi. Now check the vent temp, engine still running at 2,000 rpm. If vent temp went up or goes up, you are slightly overfilled. If the vent temp still went down, you are very close to done. You are targeting the lowest vent temp you can get by slightly adjusting the pressure. You cannot disconnect and add more later if you are using the RedTek charging hose (because the cheapo "valve" on the Red Tek charging hose leaks). You can add more if you are using a gauge and manifold set. So if you have no gauge and manifold set, you should err on the side of slight overcharge.

18. If you have overcharged, the way to release some charge is to shut off the engine, wait a few minutes, and then use a small object to depress the low-side schraeder valve slightly to release refrigerant. Do not depress too much because a fast release of refrigerant will carry too much system oil out with it. Go slowly.

19. If you do have a gauge set, then at ambient temperatures of 80 F, you want to see high side pressures around 190 to 200 psi and somewhat more at higher ambient temps. On the low side, you want to see pressures in the range of 24 psi to 29 psi. You adjust your refrigerant amount to achieve the lowest vent temps. The reason for the range of pressures is that your compressor is not new, nor is the condenser which may be dirty. (To observe the difference air flow over the condenser can make, have your helper remove the box fan from in front of the condenser and watch the high pressure side pressures go up to 250 or 260.) This is why you must use a box fan in installation of the RedTek - - it is the only way to check pressures and compare to a known data base.

20. If you don't have a box fan, you can use your rad fan on its highest speed by jumpering the terminals in the connector to the rad fan speed switch connector. Remove the connector, and jumper the correct terminals (look at the Bentley wiring diagram for your year) with a heavy gauge copper wire. Don't use a paper clip like I did the first time I tried this - - it will overheat and melt the connector.


Enjoy the cool air!!



*******************OP's Original Post Below***********************************


I've read what we have accumulated here on the samba and devised a conversion plan. Any input or suggestions would be appreciated. My goal is to have a well working AC system and not kill myself in the process. Hopefully a refined plan will help others as well.

My plan for converting to red tek is:

1) buy a new receiver drier & expansion valve
2) buy the R134a kit from van cafe (for the fittings, o-rings, and oil)
3) buy brake air line anti-freeze
4) buy Red-tek (5 cans)
5) buy Red-tek pro seal (1 can)
6) have system professionally evac'ed of R12
7) clean evaporator by blowing dust off
8 ) remove old receiver drier
9) remove mineral oil from compressor and lines (blow through)
10) use brake line anit-freeze and blow lines in both directions making sure to blow where receiver drier was connected as well.
11) install new receiver drier & expansion valve, and o-rings
12) remove old fittings on compressor and replace with new
13) evacuate lines (use cheapo harbor freight version)
14) add oil (2oz - low pressure side)
15) add some red tek (~ 5 oz low pressure side)
16) add pro-seal (low pressure side)
17) run a/c to get oil and pro-seal throughout the system
18 ) hook up gauge (low side) - the gauge I have fits between the a/c fittings on the compressor and the can of coolant
19) add remaining red tek (low pressure side) while compressor is running until the pressure is about 30psi (low side). Float cans of red tek in warm water to help get all the contents out.
20) check pressure: At idle - 30psi low side, 200psi high side. At 1500rpms 25psi low side, 200psi high side.
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Dogpilot
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2008 2:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would say you have it nailed. One thing, the conversion fitting, they leak. After you are all done, remove them, put the R12 style caps back on and put the conversion fittings in a ziplock bag for future use.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2008 2:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm no A/C expert so I can't confirm whether each of those steps are necessary. Here's my thoughts anyhow:

Step #2 seems un-necessary if you're using Red-Tek. One of the reasons to use Red-tek is that it runs at lower pressure and is more similar to R-12, so you don't need to replace all the o-rings with a conversion kit. The adapter fittings you need come with the Red-Tek "kit." (The kit is a package with two cans of red-tek coolant, one can leakstop, fittings, and a hose for charging the system.)

#4 and #5: sounds like too much refrigerant. On the redtek website there's a conversion chart that shows you how much you need to use, depending on your system's R-12 capacity. I think I used 2.5 cans of Red-tek and one can of leak stop. If you're going to use A/C pressure gauges then your pressure should determine when you've got enough refrigerant in there. Still, you want to start with a rough idea of how much you're going to put in, and I don't think it's six cans! Consult the chart.

As for your step #12 I don't think you will remove any fittings from the compressor. You will add an adaptor to the low side port (this adapter comes with the Red-tek "kit"). The low side port is on one of the A/C lines leaving the compressor. Looks like an air valve on a tire. R-12 system has one type of valve, 132 and Red-tek use a newer type of valve, hence the adapter.

Do you know that your compressor is good? I skipped lots of the steps that you have listed, but I did buy a rebuilt compressor from Van-Cafe.

If you have never used your A/C system before you might find that you need to replace the fan switch (in the radiator) or the resistor behind the driver's side headlight, or the fuses behind the driver's side rear A/C pillar (the plastic thing on the wall, on either side of the rear hatch). But you won't know until you're using your A/C system. Just something to keep in mind, because these electrical components are often worn out on our older, high mileage vehicles.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2008 3:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very nice write up... I agree with Funagon... I think I used 3 cans, but RedTek support can confirm if you're unsure about the chart on their site.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2008 3:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

probably dont need to evac the lines either. I am an A/C and havent opened up one that old with anything left in it yet. Not enough to worry about anyway.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2008 4:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

allsierra123 wrote:
probably dont need to evac the lines either. I am an A/C and havent opened up one that old with anything left in it yet. Not enough to worry about anyway.

Ya gotta pull a vacuum at some point, though, right?
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2008 5:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm certainly no expert, having only done my Vanagon and Outback with RedTek, but the RedTek instructions are to apply at atmospheric pressure... no vacuum. Maybe that's a liability thing to keep you from blowing up cans of refrigerant but I had both mine evac'd, tested for leaks under vacuum, then charged them per RedTek's instructions and had good results.
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whip618
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2008 8:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

When I recharged the system in my 87 with Red-Tek I replace the filter-drier then pulled a vacuum and let it sit for two hours and installed the Red-Tek using five cans plus one can of pro-seal and it works very well, that was a year ago.

Phil
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2008 8:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would blow the lines out yes. But I wouldn't take it in to specifically have it evac'd.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2008 8:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You want to get it evac'd in any case, not merely for leak-testing, but also to get air and the moisture it contains out of the system. It's not just to remove the old refrigerant; you want the system as free of moisture as possible, otherwise the receiver/dryer gets loaded up prematurely. It also helps to extract moisture from the desiccant if you are reusing your R/D. This is SOP for AC service regardless of refrigerant.

When I ordered Redtek from the guy in TX, the minimum order was 6 cans, so you end up with more than the system will accept. Maybe that's why he lists 5 cans Redtek plus the conditioner. My system only took about 3 cans plus the conditioner.
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Terry Kay
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2008 10:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

<<I would blow the lines out yes. But I wouldn't take it in to specifically have it evac'd.>>

How now Brown Cow?

If you don't "Take " it to have it evac'ed your going to have to do it yourself anyway.

You always, absolutly, must pull a hard vaccum on the system prior to introducing any refrigerant, after it's been open.

You gota for sure suck the moisture outa the system, and it for sure is one hell of a good idea to suck it down and be good and sure the system is tight enough to even hold the new gas.

To not do so is wacky-and an insane short cut to problems.
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Terry Kay
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2008 10:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is no minimum order if you get the Red Tek from the national distribution headquarter's in Tennesse.

Ask for Missy Simpson at Red Tek.
1-888-676-9380

The AC full limit is 4 cans.
3 of the Red Tek refridgerant, 1` of the pro seal.

Putting any more in the system will be laying a big overload on the compressor--and may cause it to stall, and run hot from the excess gas.
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pete000
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2008 10:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am just about to do this same job to my bus. Please keep this thread posted as to how it works out. I will be following your foot steps.

Where did you get your receiver dryer? I am looking for one and don't want to spend a boat load for it.
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 24, 2008 4:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If never changed would replace drier/pull vac & let sit for awhile to check for leaks & to remove any moisture(in any air that gets in while sys is open) ESPECIALLY if sys has been out of order for awhile or gas has leaked out-then u have leak thas to be traced. DO NOT MIX R134 oils with mineral base oil used in R12 sys as u get a funky mess. If R134 has been in sys then oil has been added also-this needs to be flushed out(BEFORE replacing drier &a good time while lines open,dont forget compressor-it has to be drained and correct oil & amt ADDED. Skip these on a conversion & it come back and bite u & u will get to do all over =correctly. If all orig R12 sys & has been working,simple, drier/vac-leakks test/would add 2-3 oz oil/recharge with RED-TEC & enjoy. Done 4 wbx & 3 others with RED TEK-have worked fine-my 3ct.
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 24, 2008 4:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A tip on vac of sys-make your own pump.Any compressor out of a old/working refrig/freezer/ dehumidifier etc. ADD connector to suction side line ,clamp on style works fine,for attachine charging hose to.SEAL end of line first so dont get vac leak.I have used these for several years & all were FREE for the removal,currently usung dehumidifier one-works fine -NO charge to have done. When it quits get another.
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Terry Kay
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 24, 2008 5:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

<< If R134 has been in sys then oil has been added also-this needs to be flushed out>>

The Red Tek is compatable with Ester, Pag & Mineral based AC oils.

I think in servicing an old AC system it's a good idea to get fresh oil in the system--but you could use any of the above mentioned oil's with the R-12-A.

Make's No.

I have found in servicing any old, antique, AC system is to first clean all of the snot outa the high and low pressure lines.
Be prepared to not only see a bunch of snot blow outa the lines, but also find a bunch of soft spots in the system.
Don't think for one minute that your 2O year old set up is going to be rock hard tight.

In many case's it won't.

After you get the lines, evaporator,& condensor, all flushed out, I suck it down and see if the vacuum holds for a minimum of two hours--overnight is real good.

Then purge the system with a can
of the refrigerant of your choice-then do some sniffing with a leak detector.
Look real good at the condesor area, and all of the couplings.

The front condenso takes a beating being up front in the Van, and many times this is leak prone area.

I know it's a big pain to drop the evaporator core box in back of the Van--but do it anyway, and check out all of the compression fittings for leaks with the sniffer.

While your in there clean all of the busted up, and dried up black foam rubber that surrounded the evaportaor.
Blow the evaportaor out clean--
get all of the dirt and crap it has beed injesting in the Vans lifetime outa there---

You want as much unrestriced air to travel through the coils as possible--as fast as possible.

Clean the condensation drain tubes out that go out on either side of the body.

You have the box open--just do it.

Clean & tight is key to the best operational AC system you can have.

It's a pain--and a big job, but it's the only way to get frost bite in your Vanagon in the hot , humid, summer months.


Happy Trails.
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Last edited by Terry Kay on Thu Aug 07, 2008 8:37 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 24, 2008 7:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting reading. Right now, the compressor to my A/C system is sitting in a box in my garage, and the lines are just tied up off the engine in the engine bay. Open to the atmosphere!! So I know before that I go all Red-Tek on this thing, that I need to replace the drier and have the lines vac'ed out.

But in the interest of doing this thing right, has anyone completely replaced their old A/C lines? I know it would be spendy, considering they run from front to back of the Van, but to Terry's point, aren't the 20+ year old lines going to be the weak point in all our systems?? Any idea what an A/C shop is going to charge if they are able to re-use the fittings, but replace all the lines?
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 24, 2008 7:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm sure it would be ideal to replace the lines, but I figure there are other things to spend my money on for the Vanagon. If I were recharging with R12 it's a spendy enough proposition that I would consider it. When I had my system evac'd and leak tested it held a vacuum overnight and it seemed to hold the RedTek just fine so I don't intend to replace the lines at this point. It needed no seals or hoses replaced. If it leaks the RedTek out I'll do it then... RedTek isn't as pricey as R12 would be.

I was impressed with the performance of my A/C while driving through the deserts of Utah, Nevada, and Californica last summer in 100+ temps, but all I did was recharge it. This spring I plan on giving it the full TK treatment... snot-wash, new dryer, blow out the evaporator, etc. while I'm replacing the engine. It will be interesting to see how the VW system performs with RedTek and a Subaru compressor. I'll also try charging it from a vacuum as recommended by Terry instead of at atmospheric pressure as instructed by RedTek and check all the connections for leaks under pressure.
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 24, 2008 8:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Terry K,

You once posted about some method using some common commercial truck chemical you use to clean out the system and lines. Can you find that post or tell us again what magic (inexpensive) purge you used to clean AC systems out with, please?

TIA,
Walt...
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Terry Kay
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 24, 2008 8:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The magic formula is the same stuff as posted here a couple of time's.
Air Dryer Alcohol.

You can locate it at any class 8 truck stop, dealer, or parts distributor.

It's for drying out condensation in semi tractor & trailer air systems durring the winter, so they don't freeze.

Pretty common product & perfect for cleaning out & drying AC lines & component's.
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Last edited by Terry Kay on Wed Aug 13, 2008 8:59 pm; edited 1 time in total
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