Steps To Remove Refrigerant From Your Car A/C

Steps To Remove Refrigerant From Your Car A/C

There are times when you’ll find yourself removing refrigerant from your automobile’s A/C system. But what is the best and safest way to do this? Keep reading to learn how.

Why Should Refrigerant Be Removed?

Refrigerant is a necessity for your automobile, akin to radiator coolant, as the substance allows for the proper functioning of the vehicle’s engine along with associated components. Refrigerant and Freon are basically the same thing but come in different variants such as R-12, R134A, etc. 

Before you follow the steps below, it is crucial to know the basics of your vehicle’s A/C refrigerant and the signs of a potential malfunction. Because refrigerant can be hazardous if used properly, it is best to refer to your manual and wear protective equipment when handling it and you will want to remain in compliance with any environmental regulations in your area. 

Determine The Refrigerant Pressure And Suction Size

You’ll want to start by deactivating the interior thermostat. Next, identify the lower pressure side for your vehicle’s refrigerant along with the suction size for the compressor. Its suction valve can usually be found within a condensing unit. Next, attach the lower pressure side of the refrigerant and the suction side for the compressor.

Manage Your Service Valves

Block your service valve for the lower pressure side of your condensing unit. A wrench can be used to accomplish this. However, there are some instances where the hex key might be needed rather than a wrench based on the type of valve you have. Slightly close up your service valve for the higher pressure side, but be careful not to shut it completely. If you’re using the hex key, allow it to remain in position.

Manage The Compressor And Valves

The next step is to engage your compressor by utilizing the low voltage style jumper. You’ll want to give the lower pressure valve time to empty, and once it reaches vacuum, completely cover up your service valve.

De-energize Your Compressor

This is the final step. It must be done carefully to prevent damage to your compressor, and it is highly recommended to have an assistant on hand to help you and speed things up.

When Should Refrigerant Be Removed?

Refrigerant consists of fluid that is formulated and designed to transform heated air into frigid air within your vehicle’s air conditioning system. It is responsible for the release and absorption of heat, culminating in cold air for the convenience of passengers. However, if the refrigerant levels become low, this may compromise the A/C system’s ability to function.

If your vehicle’s A/C is not blowing out cold air, or it is emitting hot air, this is a sign that you may have a problem with refrigerant levels and the R134A will need to be drained. The good news is that the steps above are not overly complicated but you will need to know the basics of your vehicle’s A/C system. Those that aren’t comfortable with managing their A/C systems themselves should hire a qualified technician.