How To Recharge the Air Conditioner in a Car

If your car’s air conditioner isn’t blowing cool air, you may have lost some of the refrigerant due to a leak.If your car uses r134a refrigerant, you can charge the system yourself with a charging kit.You will need to check for leaks.Test your system after you check the refrigerant pressure.You can finish the recharge with the addition of your refrigerant.If you own a hybrid or electric car, don’t try to charge the air conditioner yourself as it can result in a lethal electric charge.

Step 1: To locate leaks, spray soapy water on the air conditioner components.

It is possible to use dish soap and water.You don’t want to miss a leak if the system is coated.You can see bubbles around leaks.Most department stores and online sell spray bottles.You can buy a leak detector kit from your local automotive store.Follow the directions for the kit.

Step 2: There are bubbles which indicate a leak.

The foam will be created by the leak interacting with the soapy water.The leak is probably small if you see a few bubbles or take a while to appear.If you see a lot of foam, then you have a leak.A professional repair is required for big leaks.

Step 3: To repair small leaks, use a recharged kit.

You can spend a lot of money trying to find and fix a small leak, so it’s a good idea to use a product with a sealant.This will help your system hold on longer, as the refrigerant won’t leak out as quickly.Look for a product that won’t cause problems with your pipes.A gunk texture can cause a problem.

Step 4: Have leaks fixed by a professional.

You should not try to fix them on your own.You can leak dangerous chemicals from the car onto the ground.A big leak is a waste of time and money.It is best to get a professional to fix it.

Step 5: Put on gloves and eye protection.

Refrigerant can cause injuries.If it hits your skin, it can cause death.It can blind you if you get it in your eyes.Follow the instructions on the label.

Step 6: The low-pressure line port will have thicker tubing.

The air conditioner has two ports.The high-pressure line port will not be added with the refrigerant.The large tubing of the low-pressure line makes it easy to distinguish between the two.They are labeled with the letters H and L.The low-pressure line port can be lower than the high port in some vehicles.It’s easier to choose the right port with a hookup that only fits on the low-pressure port.

Step 7: The port cap can be removed.

The plastic cover on the cap seals the valve.You should put it somewhere safe after it’s off so you don’t lose it.

Step 8: The port has a pressure gauge hose.

Click the gauge over the open port.It is possible to wiggle it to make sure it is attached.Attach it again if it comes off.A pressure gauge is a must in a recharged kit.This will allow you to add more refrigerant without overcharging.

Step 9: The pressure gauge has a reading on it.

The gauge will give a reading.If it is in a safe range, it should have colored zones.If you have a car that is low in the green zone, your levels could still be lower than necessary.Once you test the outdoor temperature, your ideal pressure will be determined.When you test your system later in the process, you will do this.

Step 10: If the pressure gauge reading is less than 0.

A reading of 0 means that there isn’t any left in your air conditioner, which will require a repair by a professional technician.You can use your charging kit to charge the system.

Step 11: Turn the AC on and crank your engine.

You can check to make sure your parts are working.If your air conditioner is blowing warm or hot air, it’s okay.The hood should still be up.

Step 12: Make sure the compressor is running.

The clutch looks like a circle.Depending on how well your system is working, it can spin fast or slow.If it isn’t spinning, you can add half a can of refrigerant and check it again.You will need to take your car to a professional if it is still not spinning.

Step 13: The gauge should be set to the ambient temperature.

After you complete your refill, the gauge will tell you what your pressure should be.This is the recommended pressure level.The pressure on your pressure gauge can be monitored as you change the air conditioner.You can round up or down to the nearest 5 degrees.

Step 14: Make sure the pressure gauge is in the white or green areas.

Based on the temperature gauge reading that you took, the current pressure level should be below the recommended level.You need to take your car to a technician if it is above the recommended level or in the red zone.If the levels are low, don’t add more refrigerant.This could cause damage to your car.

Step 15: Before adding refrigerant, turn off the vehicle.

Unless the directions on your charging kit say otherwise, it is best to turn off your system after you have finished testing it.Follow the directions on your kit to get the best results.

Step 16: The inner cap needs to be removed.

The inner cap keeps the can from being pierced before you use it.You should see where the can screws into thetrigger, as it will have a typical joint.The inner cap should be removed.

Step 17: The can will be pierced by the top of the can.

There is a metal pin inside the gun.Press hard so that the metal pin pierces the top of the can.The pressure release should be heard inside the can.It will be ready for use.You will not be able to use the product if the pin doesn’t pierce the can.If this happens, you can try removing the Trigger and pressing down harder as you replace it.

Step 18: You can mix the contents by shaking the can.

Shake it up and down.This will make sure that you get an even application as you use the air conditioner.If the ingredients are not mixed well, you can experience some issues with the product.

Step 19: The port has a low-pressure line.

To fit around the port, you may need to pull back the edge of the connector.Push down until the kit is on the port.You can wiggle it to make sure it’s attached.Try again if it feels loose.

Step 20: The trigger needs to be squeezed on the refrigerant.

The refrigerant will be released into the air conditioner.As you hold the can, maintain a firm grip.If your can has a knob, you should turn it until the refrigerant comes out of the hose.You should hear it.

Step 21: To keep the contents even, move the can back and forth.

The motion should be gentle so that the ingredients stay together.You might accidentally pull it free if you move it too aggressively.

Step 22: The pressure should be checked after 10 seconds of charging.

Let’s look at the pressure gauge.Don’t put too much refrigerant into your air conditioner.If your can has a knob instead of atrigger, you should close the valve after 10 seconds.If you want to reach the desired pressure, you will need to add refrigerant a few times.You should take your time, so you don’t over charge the system.Your system can be damaged by overcharging.

Step 23: Continue until your gauge reaches the correct reading.

For 10 seconds at a time, you can squeeze thetrigger.As you charge the air conditioner, move the can back and forth.Don’t forget to check the pressure.

Step 24: The refrigerant connection needs to be removed from the port.

Pull up on the collar to break the seal.Place your charging kit in a safe location after removing the connector.If your can has a knob instead of atrigger, close it tightly before you detach it.You could put it in a cool spot in your garage, away from heat sources.

Step 25: The port cap on your air conditioner needs to be replaced.

The left pressure line port has a cap on it.This will keep debris out of your pipes.At the beginning, you removed the cap and put it in a safe place.

Step 26: Make sure the air is cold by testing your air conditioner.

It should be cold on your skin.You can use your temperature gauge to check the temperature.It should be blowing between 38 and 45 F.If it is still warm, you will need to take your car in for a checkup.