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Old 07-18-2019, 01:25 PM   #1
Keblar
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Default Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

It's the time of year for AC repairs!

Cooling was weak so I tried a recharge. Mid way through I noticed a leak. I'm guessing the extra pressure blew out an already compromised or weakened seal because now it seems like I have no cooling at all.

It's in the same place as reported by Saturn95 in this thread, http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho...25#post2078725

which they pointed out in this photo,
http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/att...0&d=1405205106

Seems like this is a high side output block for a different application

Has anyone had to repair this who can suggest an o-ring or gasket size, or maybe someone who's done a compressor rebuild can confirm that this seal is or is not in the usual S-series AC gasket kit, like this one since it's a failure point even if it isn't used?

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Old 07-18-2019, 02:40 PM   #2
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

Unfortunately, I disassembled one and it didn't have that side plug held in with a C-clip; http://www.saturnfans.com/photos/sho...-sucti/cat/500. Later models did away with this port as you can see a plug in place. When I researched drawings, it was difficult to find. It's just a guess on my part that the seal kit contains the seal for that plug.

With the system releasing most of not all refrigerant, you'll have to check if it's completely discharged (for safety against residual pressures) by pressing down on either the suction or discharge service valve. Once assured refrigerant is lost, you can't do any harm by removing the C-clip and withdrawing that plug to identify any seal used. If not sure of this procedure perhaps other members can identify its use and if serviceable or not. If not serviceable, the compressor will need to be replaced.

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Old 07-18-2019, 04:11 PM   #3
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

Thanks! It really helps to at least know it's NOT in the usual kit so I don't waste time and money on that (dead) end.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fdryer View Post
If not sure of this procedure perhaps other members can identify its use and if serviceable or not. If not serviceable, the compressor will need to be replaced.

It seems like it MUST be serviceable, otherwise why put a circlip and not just a permanent plug? I've seen some references to similar plugs, but on different compressors and different applications, which is what leads me to believe it's a High pressure output. I think it just allowed GM to use the same compressor for different physical geometries. A vehicle that used this port would just have a plug where our output is.

I'd love to be able to source a replacement before taking it apart so it's not down for days waiting for a stupid o-ring to arrive. The access is too tight to remove it without at least swinging it up. I'll be doing a belt system replacement anyway, so it's not THAT much more effort, but I'm not reassembling everything just to wait for shipping.

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Old 07-18-2019, 04:24 PM   #4
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

If you're adventurous, try a junk yard and find a similar compressor, remove the circlip and plug to examine for any seal. As far as its purpose, my guess is it's not used as another port because compressors are made with only three ports; low, high and a third port for a high pressure relief valve. These S-series compressors were probably early models with two plugs. One, the one we're discussing and a rear plug that's actually an adjustment to fine tune the compressor that's not serviceable by anyone unfamiliar with this adjustment screw. It's on the rear and has a slot for a wide screwdriver or quarter. Early service manuals describe less than a quarter turn for adjustment for field repairs as part of a service bulletin. Other than these two plugs leaking after years of service, they're of no importance to anyone attempting to repair one. Only one member sealed the rear adjustment screw with epoxy with another screw on plug to seal it off completely against leaks.

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Old 07-18-2019, 05:16 PM   #5
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

Quote:
Originally Posted by fdryer View Post
Only one member sealed the rear adjustment screw with epoxy with another screw on plug to seal it off completely against leaks.
I did come across that post, and considered it. I may still. If it were that adjustment screw port, I'd likely try it. But given that this seems to be just held in by the circlip, I was absolutely going to leave it as a last resort.

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Old 07-18-2019, 07:43 PM   #6
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

There was a similar thing like that on my Buick V5 compressor. This is what it looked like.


It's a control valve. It was also held in by a circlip.
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Old 07-19-2019, 03:44 PM   #7
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

Yeesh, I hope that's not what's in there (but, GM, so...). That's THREE O-rings to try and match, and that's if the valve itself isn't what's failing.

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Old 07-19-2019, 04:12 PM   #8
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

The valve is all internal and it is only an o-ring leak. Actual o-ring cord diameter and inside diameter is what you match and it is either ANSI or metric spec and they are not really interchangeable. You can use either the blue Neoprene or green HNBR O-Rings. And it is the material and not just the color that is important.

Last edited by OldNuc; 07-19-2019 at 04:25 PM..

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Old 07-19-2019, 05:28 PM   #9
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

Quote:
Originally Posted by OldNuc View Post
The valve is all internal and it is only an o-ring leak. Actual o-ring cord diameter and inside diameter is what you match and it is either ANSI or metric spec and they are not really interchangeable. You can use either the blue Neoprene or green HNBR O-Rings. And it is the material and not just the color that is important.

I tried matching O-rings on a MC carb rebuild before and it was not successful. I couldn't get them to seat properly. They just kept popping back out. I finally had to source them from someone who knew the correct size and bought in bulk to make kits.

The label is too worn to read the model number on my compressor, but later tonight I'm going to see if I can backtrack from a visually identical aftermarket model to find the OEM number and try to hunt down a schematic or fiche. My cursory search just showed a generic place holder compressor with no exploded view.

I was already wary of trying to match rings, and the lack of interchangeability you describe doesn't encourage that any.

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Old 07-19-2019, 08:14 PM   #10
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

There is NO OEM documentation on those compressors, the manufacturer never released any of it. The large O-ring assortment at the parts store may have the correct rings. Four Seasons is one of the many sources of these kits but there are NO rebuild kits for that compressor.

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Old 07-19-2019, 10:01 PM   #11
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

Quote:
Originally Posted by OldNuc View Post
There is NO OEM documentation on those compressors, the manufacturer never released any of it. The large O-ring assortment at the parts store may have the correct rings. Four Seasons is one of the many sources of these kits but there are NO rebuild kits for that compressor.
Well, that's no fun.

Maybe I can manage to find someone, even on another forum for a different application who might have found a decent match.

If it's a match scenario I suppose I'll just get a range of close options and see what fits best. Eyeballing seems way to imprecise for such a high pressure system, and I'm not optimistic about my micrometer even being of much use on old, worn out rings. I'll see what they're like when I get it out tomorrow or Sunday.

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Old 07-19-2019, 10:08 PM   #12
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

It is the o-ring closest to the outside world that is leaking, the rest may be fine.

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Old 07-25-2019, 08:20 PM   #13
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

I got the ring out - couldn't manage to get the plug to move at first, but here's what was inside, and what was behind it.

I'd vented both the High and Low sided schrader valves, but there was absolutely no pressure. As I started moving the plug out there was just the slightest hiss though.

The O-ring is still fairly pliable so I'm not sure how the failure occurred.

Unless anyone seems to think there's more to it, I'll just see how close I can get it to match.

I was able to clean up the compressor label and see that it's a Zexel 404220--580, assembled in US.

I still don't know for certain whether it's metric or not, but Zexel is an originally Japanese manufacturer, it's supposed to take 150cc's of oil, and the inside diameter of the o-ring (as well as OD of the plug) seems to be 13mm (battery is dead on my caliper, so that's as precise as I can get.) So I'm working as if it's metric for now.

The ID of the plug mating surface seems just shy of 18mm, so a 13mm ID 18mm OD ring should work, right? The lip past it is 15mm BTW.

Will try to source a replacement ring tomorrow if I have time.
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Last edited by Keblar; 07-25-2019 at 08:27 PM..

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Old 07-25-2019, 08:42 PM   #14
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

Need a new o-ring as that one is flat on the outside. Try and get a grreen A/C one. O-ring width is a standard and teh ID along with the width sets the OD. Measure the o-ring groove and that is the min ID of the replacement and measure the groove width and pick the closest smaller standard imperial or metric size.

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Old 07-25-2019, 10:21 PM   #15
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Keblar View Post
I got the ring out - couldn't manage to get the plug to move at first......The O-ring is still fairly pliable so I'm not sure how the failure occurred.

Unless anyone seems to think there's more to it, I'll just see how close I can get it to match......
The powdery residue is most likely pag oil seeping out, absorbing moisture (like brake fluid) and setting up aluminum for corrosion. It's always mentioned in service to use mineral oil to lube O-rings on ac fittings. Never pag oil as it absorbs moisture and may seize fittings. That's what you're seeing, pag oil seeping out gradually, corroding the grooves with moisture and hardening the O-ring until all the refrigerant leaked out. It self perpetuated over the years. All machined aluminum is bright and shiny, not encrusted with hard residue forming around the plug and bore hole. There's no clear view of the inside bore where a groove for the O-ring should be. You'll have to carefully remove all the hard residue before a new O-ring will fit to seal this plug. And use only mineral oil for lube since it doesn't absorb moisture. If done correctly with a replacement O-ring, resealing this plug should last the life of this car.

The inside diameter should be measured where the O-ring fits on the plug. The outside diameter should be one or two mm larger than the bore hole for a snug fit, compressing the O-ring as long as the bore hole is clean and free of hard residue. When cleaning and/or carefully scraping away hardened residue, determine where the O-ring outside diameter fits. Either a groove exists for the O-ring or not. If the O-ring fits onto the bore hole, the OD of the seal should be at least one mm larger for a snug fit. If the O-ring fits into a groove, maybe two mm larger OD. The idea is to size an O-ring to fit snug, not loose, with some lube to slide the plug into place. A loosely fitting O-ring won't seal anything.

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Old 07-25-2019, 11:51 PM   #16
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

Quote:
Originally Posted by fdryer View Post
The inside diameter should be measured where the O-ring fits on the plug. The outside diameter should be one or two mm larger than the bore hole for a snug fit, compressing the O-ring as long as the bore hole is clean and free of hard residue. When cleaning and/or carefully scraping away hardened residue, determine where the O-ring outside diameter fits. Either a groove exists for the O-ring or not. If the O-ring fits onto the bore hole, the OD of the seal should be at least one mm larger for a snug fit. If the O-ring fits into a groove, maybe two mm larger OD. The idea is to size an O-ring to fit snug, not loose, with some lube to slide the plug into place. A loosely fitting O-ring won't seal anything.
Those tips with sizing will be helpful. I'll see if I can get a few OD sizes and use the largest that works. I don't think there's a groove, i think it's flush until the first step down in diameter, but I'll clean up the rim and double check before sourcing rings.

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Old 07-26-2019, 01:03 AM   #17
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

Please use care when cleaning the bore hole and plug. Aluminum develops pits from corrosion and may not allow a perfect seal. The trick to unorthodox repairs like this is to be aware of the challenges to restoring as close to a perfect seal with surfaces as close to new condition as possible without creating a questionable seal after cleaning off hardened deposits that may remove metal. The only role O-rings have is to seal using clean surfaces for the inside and outside diameter to squeeze the flexible seal snug to create a perfect seal against pressure or vacuum.

I made an unorthodox repair to mismatched ac fittings, one new fitting mating to an original. I didn't notice anything unusual and simply used a new O-ring. The fitting leaked with tell tale dye. I disassembled the fitting and examined the old against new and realized the old fitting had a small amount of corrosion that caused the seal to leak. I don't recommend what I did to anyone but I carefully scraped off corrosion/hard deposits, paying attention to how surfaces mated then reused the new O-ring lubed with mineral oil. I gambled on a 50/50 chance of successfully sealing the two fittings when tightened together. This was three years ago without any trace of dye marking new leaks. Dumb luck as I would be forced to replace the original hose/fitting with a new one to match the other new hose/fitting.

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Old 07-27-2019, 07:15 PM   #18
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

No success in finding a true metric ring. My friendly LAP store was very helpful, but their best match was a visual guess, and I think it's going to be way to small. I wound up having to spring for a whole assortment, and standard was best I could do in Hnbr.

There is a groove for the ring, but I don't have a reliable way to measure the depth. The opening is 17mm so I was guessing 17.5 or 18mm OD. A .5" ID 11/16" OD is VERY close to that though. In fact, once on the plug, the OD is closer to .7" at 17.76mm than the stated .6875" (11/16).

I still have to get the rest of my list finished before I can run the car and refill the refrigerant and see if it holds, but so I can plan ahead:

Even though I haven't replaced any parts, do you think with the leakage I had that there's any need to add extra oil to the system after evacuating? Any amount would be a guess, but the total compressor capacity is 150cc.

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Old 07-27-2019, 08:44 PM   #19
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

Bunch of gaskets on Rock Auto...

https://www.rockauto.com/en/catalog/...ket+kits,13290

https://www.rockauto.com/en/catalog/...ose+seal,47917

https://www.rockauto.com/en/catalog/...r+conditioning

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Old 07-27-2019, 09:23 PM   #20
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Default Re: Is the seal for THIS in the standard AC gasket kit?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Keblar View Post
......There is a groove for the ring, but I don't have a reliable way to measure the depth. The opening is 17mm so I was guessing 17.5 or 18mm OD. A .5" ID 11/16" OD is VERY close to that though. In fact, once on the plug, the OD is closer to .7" at 17.76mm than the stated .6875" (11/16).

Even though I haven't replaced any parts, do you think with the leakage I had that there's any need to add extra oil to the system after evacuating? Any amount would be a guess, but the total compressor capacity is 150cc.
Without any list of sizes to go by as in exploded diagrams with parts ID'd by dimensions, use your best guess.

If there were zero to slight oil seepage but not enough to see massive leaking from this plug, don't add any oil. If in doubt, add 1/4 to 1/2 an ounce of pag oil into the suction side. Presuming the compressor is always under pressure even when off, pag oil will leak out any where an imperfect seal occurs. Clean the bore hole and plug of oil and use a little mineral oil for lubing the O-rings to slip them onto the plug. Mineral oil on the O-ring closest to the outside part of the plug will help prevent future corrosion since it doesn't absorb moisture, the reason the plug developed corrosion from pag oil leaking out, absorbing moisture and setting up corrosion to grow to allow the leak to occur.

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