Retrofitting the system - Flushing, etc. - Page 2 - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums
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post #16 of 43 (permalink) Old 07-20-2014, 10:53 AM
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hmmm, why was my post so w-i-d-e??

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post #17 of 43 (permalink) Old 07-21-2014, 09:54 AM Thread Starter
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Just for additional testimony, my brother in law is navigator on a Coast Guard UTB and he says they use the E-Z Clip system for everything on the boats. Mainly because they can repair it with hand tools in less than 2 minutes, but it's also dead reliable even in salt water marine conditions.

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post #18 of 43 (permalink) Old 07-21-2014, 10:54 AM
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Very cool.

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post #19 of 43 (permalink) Old 07-22-2014, 08:01 AM
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two observations:
1. In rebuiliding a 25 year old system, new hoses should be used; If converting an r-12 designed system to r134a, the ne refrigerant will "leak" through the old hoses as the 134a molucules are smaller. New hoses should be "barrier" type. I'd use them regardless of whether I had expensive r-12 or converted refrigerant.
2. Flushing is imperative for proper operation and component life. While most shops will not flush properly, the real way to do it is to flush the condenser and all hard lines, replace all hoses with new, remove and flush the evaporator [you cannot flush the expansion valve] then refit. otherwise new evaporator is called for [tough find for a gtv6]. Anything less is half &^%$.

oh and by the way, I am always amazed at the weight of a your reciprical compressor [much more at home on a 70 something Ford sedan than a lightweight import].
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post #20 of 43 (permalink) Old 07-22-2014, 09:41 AM Thread Starter
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The condenser will be brand new, as will the receiver/drier. I don't have a flushing machine of course, so I planned to use the accepted at-home method of using a flushing bottle with a good r12 to r134a solvent, and pop drying everything with dry shop air. The only hard lines I'm aware of in a GTV6 are in the evap unit itself, everything is hose.

I've also talked to a few AC pros, and they sort of shrugged at new hoses. With the "build up of goop" (those are scientific terms used by more than one person), I shouldn't experience leakage as long as ai use new r134a o-rings. But I'm still going to do a leak test on the new setup to see if the old hoses are even up to the job.

I've estimated the cost of all-new E-Z Clip hoses at around $250-300 - 8 new fittings at $20 each, ~15 ft of hose at $4 a foot, proprietary tool (which I could buy used and resell once I'm done) plus shipping and tax. That's not terrible, but I would be way outside my budget for this summer's work, which includes a ridiculous situation with my heads and some ongoing lighting and electrical issues. Oh well. So it goes with these cars. Might have to sell a guitar... or a kidney.

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post #21 of 43 (permalink) Old 07-22-2014, 04:26 PM
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Originally Posted by chairmankaga View Post
The condenser will be brand new, as will the receiver/drier. I don't have a flushing machine of course, so I planned to use the accepted at-home method of using a flushing bottle with a good r12 to r134a solvent, and pop drying everything with dry shop air. The only hard lines I'm aware of in a GTV6 are in the evap unit itself, everything is hose.

I've also talked to a few AC pros, and they sort of shrugged at new hoses. With the "build up of goop" (those are scientific terms used by more than one person), I shouldn't experience leakage as long as ai use new r134a o-rings. But I'm still going to do a leak test on the new setup to see if the old hoses are even up to the job.

I've estimated the cost of all-new E-Z Clip hoses at around $250-300 - 8 new fittings at $20 each, ~15 ft of hose at $4 a foot, proprietary tool (which I could buy used and resell once I'm done) plus shipping and tax. That's not terrible, but I would be way outside my budget for this summer's work, which includes a ridiculous situation with my heads and some ongoing lighting and electrical issues. Oh well. So it goes with these cars. Might have to sell a guitar... or a kidney.
I can relate to thos "pros" who , it seems, believe the "barrier hose" issue is way hyped up- Ive encountered that too. I can tell you Ive used the original hoses on my alfa and found no evidence that any leakage was occuring due to older R12 hoses. Ive gone about 5 years on a charge of r12 on the original hoses- not bad. Oh- thats not saying the slow leak was due to hoses- usually its o rings.

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post #22 of 43 (permalink) Old 07-22-2014, 04:27 PM
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but thos e z clips/hoses ARE $$$. Still, they are nice.

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post #23 of 43 (permalink) Old 07-22-2014, 04:40 PM
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The leakage point is that supposedly the R134 molecules are smaller than the R12, so whereas an R12 fill might not leak a 134 one would. So the newer barrier hoses are meant for 134 so would not leak.

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post #24 of 43 (permalink) Old 07-23-2014, 07:41 AM Thread Starter
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Right. But I often hear that older hoses are "gunked" and effectively seal the material as well as a new barrier hose. I guess I'll find out, depending on the result of the system leak test. My neighbor has a box of R134a canisters, a manifold gauge set, and a vacuum pump (his old Maxima had chronic AC issues so he bulked up on tools and supplies, which have been sitting for the past year), so we'll know what's what soon enough.

Question. Since I'm converting from R12 to R134a, and since my new Sanden compressor came shipped with PAG 46 oil already installed, should I drain that in fill up with ester oil? Everyone says any residual oil in the system will foul PAG oil and ruin the compressor, but ester oil is tolerant of small quantities of old mineral oil that might be hiding out. Easy enough to do, just curious if it's a prudent course of action.

Expansion valve is out and I'm ready to flush the evap and lines this weekend. AZ flush bottle, conversion-safe solvent, and lots of towels.

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post #25 of 43 (permalink) Old 07-23-2014, 07:57 AM
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If you're sure all the mineral oil is out of the system, then you can use PAG. Otherwise use Esther oil.

From my experience, regardless of the "gunk" in the old R-12 hoses, you still get R-134a seepage, enough that you have to top the system off every year. But, not enough to justify all new barrier hoses if your old ones are serviceable.

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post #26 of 43 (permalink) Old 07-23-2014, 08:01 AM Thread Starter
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That's what I'm thinking. Even if the charge only lasts a season due to a slow leak, I can always retrofit new barrier hoses next year since I tend to flush the radiator annually anyway.

I'm gonna switch to ester oil. I of course plan to thoroughly flush the evaporator as well as I'm capable of, but since I'm only using hand equipment and not a service machine I'll err on the side of caution. It's also the first time I've ever done this...

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post #27 of 43 (permalink) Old 07-23-2014, 05:28 PM
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Right- I wouldnt fuss too much about so called "barrier" hoses. Not worth the fuss/headache/cost. Its one of those auto ac hyped up issues- kinda like black death, and evacuating down to 29.99" mercury for 12 hours......

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post #28 of 43 (permalink) Old 07-23-2014, 06:57 PM
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Do try and replace as many of the o-rings as practical with R134a bunas.

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post #29 of 43 (permalink) Old 07-24-2014, 08:55 AM Thread Starter
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O-rings are all being replaced. Every last one.

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post #30 of 43 (permalink) Old 07-27-2014, 08:21 PM Thread Starter
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Flushed today. No solid particles, which I suppose is a good sign. How many times should I have flushed it? I ran four full cycles, two reverse flow and two regular. Same for the hoses.

Something I didn't account for was what happened after the solvent ran out in the bottle and I started just blowing air. It blasted the fluid out of the catch bottle and all over the interior. Fun times. If I had a do over, I'd have used a gallon jug with a little more room for expansion. At least it's fast evaporating and has a nice lemony aroma. Might actually be an improvement over the dead mouse and grease odor of present.

Also picked up some ester oil to replace the PAG oil the compressor shipped with. Have the condenser installed. Need a pressure switch for the drier. So far so good.

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