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82 r12 AC: Charge yourself or need 132a?

NewVetter

Active member
Joined
Feb 21, 2006
Messages
35
Location
NH
Hi all... Have the 82 and per last post, took to shopt this AM to find is original r12 freon(?) not the newer stuff, meaning car was never converted. He said can take to different shop that'll charge it, or they can do a simple conversion of basically the connectors, or fittings. (Guy working there was former Chevy Vette mechanic). Says is easy/routine conv then they can charge with the newer r132a(?) or whatever it is called.

My Q: If it were available, could "I" get the orig r12 and recharge it myself? Or, guessing it is NOT available to avg Joe so regardless, must go to one of the two shops per above... ask cuz have heard of the 'kits' you can buy to charge it yourself. Thanks. Regards.
 

Jack

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 27, 2000
Messages
1,825
Location
Florence, SC (Timmonsville SC)
Corvette
71 War Bonnet Yellow VERT 71 BH Blue CPE (SOLD)
R-12 is restricted use ... but you can find R-12 on ebay ... and it's EXPEN$IVE! If you need a recharge ... that means you have a leak ... small or big. No way I'd recharge a leaker w/ R-12 ... but I'd try it w/ much cheaper & readily available R-134a. Get the R-134a conversion kit & have at it ... you can get one w/ instructions at discount stores for $30-$35.

Also, "QUEST" makes about the best recharge type sealer kit for R-134a ... it's called "Super Seal" ... expect to pay $20-$30/ super seal kit ... it's not a conversion kit ... it's simply to seal up a leaking R-134a system.
 

NewVetter

Active member
Joined
Feb 21, 2006
Messages
35
Location
NH
Hi Jack, thanks! Symptom is no cold air out vents... but car had been sitting 2.5 - 3 yrs not driven. Could it be I have no leaks and it is simply due to non use for such a long time? R134 conv kit sounds interesting and may very well try it, (have you done the conversion by chance?) Thanks again for reply, Regards!
 

Jack

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 27, 2000
Messages
1,825
Location
Florence, SC (Timmonsville SC)
Corvette
71 War Bonnet Yellow VERT 71 BH Blue CPE (SOLD)
NewVetter said:
Hi Jack, thanks! Symptom is no cold air out vents... but car had been sitting 2.5 - 3 yrs not driven. Could it be I have no leaks and it is simply due to non use for such a long time? R134 conv kit sounds interesting and may very well try it, (have you done the conversion by chance?) Thanks again for reply, Regards!
Yes I've successfully done conversion. No I'm not an A/C expert ... I cannot diagnose such a broad symptom from afar (why there's no freon in a long-idle car). Yes it's possible the leak is VERY small (from sitting so long) ... maybe you should have a shop pull a deep vacuum on the system and check for how long it'll hold ... that'll tell you alot. If you do self-install conversion & it doesn't hold ... you're out only a few bucks & an hour.
 
Joined
Jan 1, 2002
Messages
7,246
Location
Washington, Michigan
Corvette
'67 Marina Blue Convertible
NewVetter said:
My Q: If it were available, could "I" get the orig r12 and recharge it myself? Or, guessing it is NOT available to avg Joe so regardless, must go to one of the two shops per above... ask cuz have heard of the 'kits' you can buy to charge it yourself. Thanks. Regards.

No, you can't recharge it yourself (with either R-12 or R134a) at home, unless you have a vacuum pump and gauge manifold to pull the system down to high vacuum first (after leak-testing it).

:beer
 

mkapp7879

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 17, 2004
Messages
398
Location
Beecher, Ill.
Corvette
78 Pace,black 79 and white 79, all L82s
I thought I'd need to have the AC system tested and evac't on my white 79. Hooked my gauges up just to see what I'd see before taking it to a shop. Still had a little pressure, enough to know the system wasn't empty. Ended up putting in 2 cans of R12. Pressure right up there now and blows nice and cold. Previous owner never drove the car, 11,000 miles when I got it, most put on by the original owner from 79-83. R12 WILL slowly leak past seals and even through the hoses, especially when not used. See if there's any pressure, if so, top it off with R12. I also ended up putting 1 1/2 cans into my black 79, last charged about 1987. So that one took 19 years to loose a can and a half. Got my freon off Ebay, gotta be(or get) certified to buy the stuff, tho. Mike
 

Jack

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 27, 2000
Messages
1,825
Location
Florence, SC (Timmonsville SC)
Corvette
71 War Bonnet Yellow VERT 71 BH Blue CPE (SOLD)
No, you can't recharge it yourself (with either R-12 or R134a) at home, unless you have a vacuum pump and gauge manifold to pull the system down to high vacuum first (after leak-testing it)
Ideally ... you're quite right. But ... I've done several without vacuuming. Just Sunday I helped a bud do his older R12 Ranger PU in very hi humidity ... leaky compressor had been off truck for about a year ... system wide open all that time ... put a junkyard compressor & a new drier ... used the $35 wallyworld 134a conversion kit ... no vacuuming ... & it was still freezing the happy driver on Tuesday.
 

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