Adding Freon? - Nissan Murano Forum
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post #1 of 27 Old 06-18-2010, 06:46 AM Thread Starter
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Unhappy Adding Freon?

The past few weeks we had temp in the 90's here and I've notice its take about 30 mins for the AC to kick in. I've talked to a few people about this and was told they had the same issue, and had someone add freon to their AC system to resolve it.

I've checked some local auto service center for AC service and found price ranging from $99 - $149. Also I saw on Autozone's web site there is a freon charging kit for $40.

Has anyone done this before? Or is there any instructions on how to do this?

Also I did try Warhammer's trick to insulate the AC line already.

Thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 27 Old 06-18-2010, 07:02 AM
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I suspect a slow leak if your ac takes 1/2 hour to kick in. Those kits have a guage that tells you if you are low in freon. It comes with instructions and you add the freon on the low pressure side. There is a valve in the area where you covered you pipes with the foam. It will be best to get a pressure test on the system. This way you will fix it for good. Those auto ac shops sometimes got deals on pressure checking the ac system for free if you have them fix it if there is a leak. Ask for the cost up front first though.
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post #3 of 27 Old 06-18-2010, 12:39 PM
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Some background: Freon is a term for a class of chloroflurocarbons (commonly R-12) which is no longer used in auto AC systems. Most now use R-134A (a kind of tetrafluoroethane) which I haven't heard referred to as ""freon", although it's likely that term is still used coloquially. At any rate, R-134A is what you would find in auto parts stores.

R-134A has a smaller molecular structure than R-12, and is therefore slightly more prone to leakage. I STRONGLY recommend that you take the car to an AC shop (not the dealer) and have them do a leak test, then fill it for you. The cost should not be very high, and it will be done right.

I decided some time ago not to just slap a filler gauge set on my AC and mickey-mouse it. I leave the AC recharge work to people who really understand the systems.

I do replace my own AC components or even complete systems (done it on three cars and saved a ton of money) but when it comes to re-charge time, I take it to a pro.

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post #4 of 27 Old 06-21-2010, 12:45 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the replies ...

I got this fixed this weekend.
On Friday I took it to get a free AC test -
no leaks were found however was told the freon level was at min level, was told this is normal with the mileage (128k) since the AC was never serviced

On Saturday I had some free time and decide to drain/flush/refill anti-freeze and also added freon, just below the max. Low pressure line is still insulated

It was 96 Degrees here in Atlanta, and the AC felt colder then ever.
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post #5 of 27 Old 06-21-2010, 01:27 AM
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Can you post the diy in adding the freon. I am now thinking in adding some in my ac which has not seen service yet either. But I only have 72k on my '04. However, vegas heat makes me always want colder air. It may need topping off as well--even just a little.
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post #6 of 27 Old 06-21-2010, 03:05 AM
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Adding refrigerant (let's not call it Freon, since its Freon is not used anymore, its R134a now) is not something you can generally do on your own unless you have the necessary equipment - the "recharge kits" they sell at auto parts stores are a booster only, and there really isn't a way to tell if the system is fully charged or not with the cheap gauge they supply. A professional shop will fully evacuate the system, capture the old refrigerant, recycle it, and fill the system to capacity with new R134a.

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post #7 of 27 Old 06-21-2010, 11:55 AM
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Glad to hear that your AC system is working again! The only question I would have for the technician is this: If my freon levels are low, and you say I don't have any leaks, then how did my freon get out of this sealed system? Or does freon these days just get tired or break down to where it doesn't work any more.

It would be interesting to see the difference in AC performance if only the Arctic Freeze stuff were put into the system. The company claims that the AC will put out colder air and will get colder faster upon start up. Anybody ever use this stuff?
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post #8 of 27 Old 06-21-2010, 02:27 PM
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As I mentioned above, R134A is a smaller molecular structure than R12 was, and therefore over time it generally leaks more readily even if there are no flaws in the system. Systems will vary, and some will hold better than others. More frequent charges are just part of the price we pay.

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post #9 of 27 Old 06-21-2010, 05:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Warhammer View Post
Glad to hear that your AC system is working again! The only question I would have for the technician is this: If my freon levels are low, and you say I don't have any leaks, then how did my freon get out of this sealed system? Or does freon these days just get tired or break down to where it doesn't work any more.

It would be interesting to see the difference in AC performance if only the Arctic Freeze stuff were put into the system. The company claims that the AC will put out colder air and will get colder faster upon start up. Anybody ever use this stuff?

I was looking at the quest co website and actually thinking of using the subzero can. IDQ - Auto A/C Products & Sealing Solutions

Key question is how to know if you put in enough without overfilling. Estimating by using the pressure guage and the can capacity is all you have.

Here is a video of a guy using it.
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post #10 of 27 Old 06-21-2010, 07:07 PM
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The video ads to my limited knowledge of the PSI readings on AC systems. In other words, after turning on your AC system to the maximum setting, make sure that the PSI reading is correct with respect to the compressor being on. When the compressor turns on, observe the PSI reading. If the PSI reading is below expected values, add the freon little by little until the PSI reading is correct.

It looks easier than I was making it. I tend to overcharge systems when I went to recharge in the past which made me a bit gunshy. I have one of these meters at home so I'll check my AC pressure levels to see what they are.

Do you have to compensate for a hot engine bay? Or is it with respect to ambient outside temperature only?

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post #11 of 27 Old 06-21-2010, 07:21 PM
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From the literature...I think its the general ambient temp.

They have this chart IDQ - Auto A/C Products & Sealing Solutions
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post #12 of 27 Old 06-22-2010, 10:20 AM
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Cool...can anybody confirm the PSI reading part of my previous post?

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post #13 of 27 Old 06-23-2010, 10:27 AM
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Checked my low side yesterday afternoon and it sits right at 35PSI while the compressor was on. Looks good!

The only concern is that it was like 95 degrees outside. Should I add more freon to bring it up to 45PSI? Or should I leave it alone?

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post #14 of 27 Old 06-23-2010, 04:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Warhammer View Post
...Should I add more freon to bring it up to 45PSI? Or should I leave it alone?
Leave it alone...I bet you can't find any freon in stores to buy anyways...

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post #15 of 27 Old 06-24-2010, 12:16 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Warhammer View Post
Checked my low side yesterday afternoon and it sits right at 35PSI while the compressor was on. Looks good!

The only concern is that it was like 95 degrees outside. Should I add more freon to bring it up to 45PSI? Or should I leave it alone?
Mine was reading 30PSI so I used the Arctic Freeze and recharge it to about 42-43PSI.
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