Any auto mechanic in the house? - Page 2
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  1. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by RLBisTCB View Post
    Get the dealer to fix it at no charge if you can, but if not just charge it yourself. I feel sure you can charge an air conditioner, or you wouldn't be here. Just charge it as you would any system. good luck!

    P.S. Find and fix the leak first!
    So, he charge it. He finds the leak. Then its time to pull the charge. I hope he's got a spare clean recovery cylinder. Automotive recovery machine has a special oil cup that monitors the amount of oil that got pulled out, so you know how much oil to replace. If you use an HVACR recovery machine, you lose that ability.

    TS: go buy the dye from auto parts store, add it and charge some refrigerant. use the A/C as much as you can until the weekend.
    Go over it with UV light and hope that you find the leak. pay special attention to areas around front tires(where they did alignment work). Depending on the size and location of the leak, it could take a day or two weeks before dye becomes visible.

    From there, you legally have to wait until it leaks out naturally... or recover the refrigerant before you can open the system.

  2. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by ICanHas View Post

    If it involves getting to the evaporator, on some cars that means taking off the steering wheel and basically taking out the whole dash to get to the core.

    Gaining access to condenser can involve dropping the bumper.

    This is why I included SRS warning.


    Here's an example. Very common car. I didn't say you can not add provided you want to do all that. Consider the labor time this procedure would add without having the equipment to charge via the high port.
    I said nothing about removing the evap, or the condenser. You quoted me and still got it wrong. I said "IMHO if you blow the air bag just by connecting your manafold, Then you shouldn't own a manafold, or even check your oil!" I was just talking about connecting the manafold, but you made it sound like every airbag in every vehicle in the entire world would go off if he tried to connect to the system. As far as the Ford Focus you showed, A '02 may be like that, I know for a fact that the '05 focus isn't. But even if every vehicle was like the picture, if the man has the knowlage, the time, and the determination to fix it without all those fancy toys, who are either of us to say he shouldn't? And to be frank about things, I don't think it's all that hard to get to, if you know what you're doing. And I don't see how you lose the ability to check the amount of oil you pulled out, I know my recovery machine has an oil seperator with a manual drain. does yours not?

  3. #16
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    There's something (positive) to be said about being industrious and fixing your own problems.
    This isn't the AOP forum right?

  4. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by RLBisTCB View Post
    I said nothing about removing the evap, or the condenser. You quoted me and still got it wrong.
    It's implied if he's going to start digging around there to repair leaks.

    I said "IMHO if you blow the air bag just by connecting your manafold, Then you shouldn't own a manafold, or even check your oil!" I was just talking about connecting the manafold, but you made it sound like every airbag in every vehicle in the entire world would go off if he tried to connect to the system.
    His made his repair intentions clear. Hooking up gauges won't fix the leak, so digging in to make repairs was implied as well.

    As far as the Ford Focus you showed, A '02 may be like that, I know for a fact that the '05 focus isn't.
    I beg to differ. http://acprocold.com/wp-content/uplo...8/05-focus.jpg

    But even if every vehicle was like the picture, if the man has the knowlage, the time, and the determination to fix it without all those fancy toys, who are either of us to say he shouldn't?
    This forums is about anti DIY, isn't it moderators? If the reasoning "if A can do HVAC, he can do MVAC" is sound the converse holds true.

    And to be frank about things, I don't think it's all that hard to get to, if you know what you're doing. And I don't see how you lose the ability to check the amount of oil you pulled out, I know my recovery machine has an oil seperator with a manual drain. does yours not?
    HVACR machine like the Stinger and Appion or your MVAC machine? I don't have an MVAC recycling machine with all the bells and whistles(and much bigger..) that HVACR machine doesn't.


    Back to topic though. I say evac, add dye and recharge. Figure out where the leak is and if it's something they might have bumped while doing the alignment, point it to them and tell them to fix it.

  5. #18
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    Anti-DIY, Ok so you're saying that if I have a problem with someone else's system I can get on here and get any help I need, but if I have the same problem with my own system, I'm just SOL as to getting help here? That makes about as much sense as a football bat! I agree this forum shouldn't help the avg joe try to fix his heat pump, But why can't we help other members in our buisness fix their own heat pump? (I just used heat pump as an example!) Now, I've said what I have to say on the subject, and I'm done. Believe what you want, but refgrigeration, is refrigeration! from a water cooler that only holds 8 oz. to a big chiller that holds 1000 lbs., they work on the exact same principle.
    It's a beautiful day friends, just watch some idiot screw it up!

    Build a man a fire, and he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he's warm the rest of his life!

  6. #19
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    I have used the semi and the more fully automated mvac equipment, and I never had an issue with oil.

    If you have a sniffer, get it down by the evap condensate drain to see if it goes nuts. If it does, it's a full days work to pull the dash to get to the air box.

  7. #20
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    Put it up on a hoist and visually inspect every inch of all the refrigerant circuit. look for recent damage and keep in mind burn marks that look like arcwelding can be from some stupid accidentally shorting power to ground, in this case the aluminum refrig line completing the circuit.
    Good luck!

  8. #21
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    If it was an older Ford product, I would say it is very likely a leaking spring lock connector.

    For most vehicles, it is an evap, a connector, or the condenser. I never had a compressor leak, but I DID have many a variable displacement compressor have the control valve in the back of the case go bad, and the default position is a flat swash, so there is no compression.

    If you still have refrigerant in the system, this should not be hard to find.
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  9. #22
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    I've only found leaks where the lines connect as far as a compressor leaking, had a friend tell me they had one leaking around the front seal behind the clutch, but he didn't have anything but soap bubbles for a leak detector so I don't know. 99% of the ones I find are where the lines connect. Unless there has been some kind of physical damage.
    It's a beautiful day friends, just watch some idiot screw it up!

    Build a man a fire, and he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he's warm the rest of his life!

  10. #23
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    Many years ago, I expected shaft seal failures to be common. I never replaced a single one. Clutches and coils, yes. Or, an internal problem like a valve stopped compression, and the era of teardowns had already ended, and instead, a new or rebuilt compressor, with a warranty, would be installed.
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    2 Tim 3:16-17

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  11. #24
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    I have replaced a clutch or two in my time, but that's about it. and those were on the dual piston "Ford" style compressors made by York and a few others. And that's only because they were so easy to change, My time was starting just about the same time as the days of mechanics were ending and the time of "parts changers" was starting up. I miss the old days, even though I wasn't alive yet for most of them, and only barley remember the days when full serve gas was all there was.
    It's a beautiful day friends, just watch some idiot screw it up!

    Build a man a fire, and he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he's warm the rest of his life!

  12. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by timebuilder View Post
    Many years ago, I expected shaft seal failures to be common. I never replaced a single one. Clutches and coils, yes. Or, an internal problem like a valve stopped compression, and the era of teardowns had already ended, and instead, a new or rebuilt compressor, with a warranty, would be installed.
    It's like that everywhere. There was a time when A/V equipment got component level repair. Things were not as complicated back then and discrete components. As the labor cost shoots out of control, repairs are things of the past.

    HVAC equipment is no exception. Tally up the cost to replace a few parts and the bill is already close to whole sale price of new equipment.

    Cars are totaled so readily in the US and labor cost is a good reason.
    Perhaps unions are part to blame for this trend. The fact people are willing to pay for it is another.

    Compressor rebuild parts are available, but I'm not willing to pay the labor rate to have it done locally when its cheaper to exchange for one that's already done in Mexico.

    Shaft seal and belly leakers are fairly common as they age.
    If all connection points are located and tested free of leak and both heat exchangers but you're losing refrigerant quickly, its usually the compressor body somewhere.

    Mechanics just turn wrenches, throw parts etc and those are the people I think are over paid.

  13. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by ICanHas View Post
    Mechanics just turn wrenches, throw parts etc and those are the people I think are over paid.
    I've done some research on wages, and I have specific numbers on mechanic wages.

    Let's say you made $21.00 per flat rate hour in 2000 for a major full service nationwide repair company.

    In 2006, that rate should have risen to $24.59 in order to keep pace with inflation, let alone, be an actual "raise in pay."

    The company I surveyed that was paying $21.00 in the year 2000 had only raised their top rate to $23.00, a deficit in purchasing power of $1.59 an hour for the flat rate mechanic.

    So, the real purchasing power of that worker decreased in the six year period of my survey, and it likely did so for many others as well. Part of this is because of the aforementioned "pricing ourselves out of the labor market," and the jobs that were once done here at OUR labor rates are now being done somewhere ELSE for THEIR labor rate, a rate which is significantly lower.

    The replacement compressor is likely a Sanyo unit or maybe a Mitsubishi in origin. The Frigidaire A6 is no longer made, and its remaufactured cousin is a pacific rim product. It makes no sense to use the specialized tools to replace a shaft seal on a compressor out of a 1995 minivan if you can install a reman compressor with only the removal and install labor, and give the customer a warranty on the reman part, to boot.

    Being a mechanic is not what it used to be, just like the residential HVAC tech is now as much a salesman as he is a tech. Sad, but true. When it is cheaper to build a unit than it is to fix it, parts and system replacement rules the marketplace.

    Site for the inflation calculator:

    http://www.bls.gov/data/inflation_calculator.htm
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    2 Tim 3:16-17

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