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Old 05-31-2011, 06:36 PM   #1
calirider
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2004 ION-1 Sedan
Default How Do You Remove and Reinstall AC Condenser

I could not find a how to thread:
2004 Ion-1
Remove and Reinstall AC Condenser

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Old 06-01-2011, 05:24 AM   #2
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Default Re: How Do You Remove and Reinstall AC Condenser

Condensers really should be done by a shop

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Old 06-01-2011, 05:56 AM   #3
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Default Re: How Do You Remove and Reinstall AC Condenser

Maybe the OP wants to save the labor charges by doing it him/her self and leave the technical refrigeration work to a shop? Or already knows how to complete all the necessary a/c repairs but is stuck on disassembling the condenser coil?

The best I can offer are the procedures (in pdf) and ask if the OP is aware of the seals/R12 oil (seal lube) needed to do this replacement correctly as well as adding make up refrigerant oil. I would guess the condenser coil is damaged and leaked to justify replacing it.

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Old 06-01-2011, 04:31 PM   #4
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Default Re: How Do You Remove and Reinstall AC Condenser

r12?!?!?!?! wer're not in the 80's, fdryer. also, the main reason you want a shop to do it is most people think you can just vent the refrigerant into the atmosphere, and don't know about adding oil to the system. if you get the amount of oil, or refrigerant amount wrong, the system can be permanently damaged. also, adding refrigerant isn't as simple as most people think it is.

if you have to change your own condenser, please take it to a shop before and after. let them reclaim, then fill the refrigerant and oil right.

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Old 06-01-2011, 05:34 PM   #5
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Default Re: How Do You Remove and Reinstall AC Condenser

The condenser got damaged and leaked out everything so the shop would have nothing to claim, right? I do just want to install the condenser myself to save on my labor rate. I was told the condenser is not too hard to R&R and then have a shop "evac and recharge" the system. I was looking at just buying a condenser from eBay and install it but do not know all the little "tips" such as the oil you guys are talking about, that is why I am posting to make sure all my ducks are in a row before I start shooting. Also, do I need any special tools to just swap the condenser out?

Thanks

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Old 06-01-2011, 05:41 PM   #6
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Default Re: How Do You Remove and Reinstall AC Condenser

Quote:
Originally Posted by fdryer View Post
Maybe the OP wants to save the labor charges by doing it him/her self and leave the technical refrigeration work to a shop?

The best I can offer are the procedures (in pdf) and ask if the OP is aware of the seals/R12 oil (seal lube) needed to do this replacement correctly. I would guess the condenser coil is damaged and leaked to justify replacing it.
Nailed it:
I want to do the condenser myself to save labor charges
I planned on getting the system recharged at a shop
I would like a PDF
I am not aware of seals/oil/etc to do the job correct
The condenser was damaged and leaked everything out

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Old 06-01-2011, 06:25 PM   #7
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Default Re: How Do You Remove and Reinstall AC Condenser

Pm an e-mail address and I'll send the pdf's. Let me know if this is the 2.2L or 2.0L engine.

In general, a/c repairs requiring separation of end fittings entails a bit more knowledge about meddling with high/low pressure systems. Low as low as a complete vacuum like up where the Shuttle astronauts are floating around in their expensive tourist getaways to beyond 250psi on HOT and HUMID days. O-rings provide a seal to keep refrigerant contained for continuous recycling otherwise any break in sealing compromises this system and the horror begins; the all too predictable L-E-A-K. Loss of refrigerant from anywhere simply stops a perfectly good system from cooling.

The O-rings will need to be replaced (maybe $5 for the whole boat load), prelubed with R12 (mineral) oil to allow a good slip fit before joining the fittings together again for the pressure proof seal needed to keep gas or liquid R14a/dye/oil from leaking out. There's also make up oil needed to pour back into the replacement condenser coil; oil freely circulates throughout the system so a major replacement part requires balancing the oil removed with returning it in the form of new PAG oil in predetermined amounts depending on the part replaced. The condenser coil may need no more than an ounce or two either poured into it before the fittings are joined or during the refill stage. Having this system finished by an a/c shop might be better if you pour oil into the condenser coil instead of relying on a shop to do it. Whether they care enough to inject oil depends on their fees too. I think we use PAG 46 oil. Repairing your a/c system yourself allows you to decide on what you have control over to ensure having someone else finish the job is complete.

Last edited by fdryer; 06-01-2011 at 06:33 PM..

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Old 06-01-2011, 08:39 PM   #8
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Default Re: How Do You Remove and Reinstall AC Condenser

Do not put r12 in your car!!

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Old 06-08-2011, 09:37 PM   #9
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Default Re: How Do You Remove and Reinstall AC Condenser

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2006 ion2 View Post
Do not put r12 in your car!!
Ummm, he said R12 mineral oil for the seals not the refrigerant, you cant even get r12 if you tried your hardest(they stopped making it in 1995 but like all things can be found for a price) and r12 wouldnt even work in a modern system thou r12 is superior to anything their is now.

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Old 06-14-2011, 10:17 PM   #10
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Default Re: How Do You Remove and Reinstall AC Condenser

I don't know how well known fdryer is here but on the S-forum he is considered the resident expert on A/C repair. He tells it like it is and is frank about not doing a halfass repair or just putting in more refrigerant when there is a leak.

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Old 06-15-2011, 05:30 AM   #11
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Default Re: How Do You Remove and Reinstall AC Condenser

Okay, don't put r12 oil in your car! R12 is expensive, and bad for the environment compared to r134a. The oil is actually the incompatible part, refrigerant is refrigerant, and I've even heard of people running propane in their ac system (if you like that ticking time bomb feeling). R12 oil may be okay in a 134a system, but why buy r12 oil when you already need PAG oil for charging the system?

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Old 06-15-2011, 07:18 AM   #12
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Default Re: How Do You Remove and Reinstall AC Condenser

R12 mineral is used solely as prelube for O-rings where applicable, according to the FSM. Its never been mentioned for use as oil for R134a systems. PAG oil is not recommended for O-ring prelube as it corrodes the fittings (also from the FSM).

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Old 06-15-2011, 10:26 AM   #13
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Default Re: How Do You Remove and Reinstall AC Condenser

dunno, seems kinda fishy to me. fdryer has all those little green boxes around his avitar, maybe the more you have the less you know????

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Old 06-15-2011, 10:52 AM   #14
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Default Re: How Do You Remove and Reinstall AC Condenser

Sshhhhhhhhhh!? Dummy up!? I need litter boxes!

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Old 06-15-2011, 03:48 PM   #15
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Default Re: How Do You Remove and Reinstall AC Condenser

Those little green boxes (no offense) mean very little on the ion forum, as nobody ever clicks the button. I thought you couldn't use the r12 oil anywhere in an r134a system. I guess, at least for this car you can use it for assembly. Weird.

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Old 06-15-2011, 05:27 PM   #16
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Default Re: How Do You Remove and Reinstall AC Condenser

No offense taken. You are correct that R12 oil cannot be used internally in R134a systems. I was just as surprised as you are when the service manual explicitly calls for R12 mineral oil for lubing some O-rings prior to putting fittings together during R134a repairs. The warning is that using PAG oil for O-ring lube on fittings will cause corrosion even though its circulating through the system. And there are specific fittings that do not need R12 oil on O-rings. I'm only passing on information from the service manuals per application. The last thing I want is for any a/c repair to go bad for something as simple as the incorrect oil application during reassembly. If I can mess up then anyone can and if I can do it right then anyone can, too - provided all the information is on hand to see a repair done correctly.

Every Saturn model has specific instructions on where to use R12 mineral oil for O-ring lube.

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Old 07-26-2011, 01:22 PM   #17
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Default Re: How Do You Remove and Reinstall AC Condenser

Easyiest change I have ever done, two colts holding it to the car, one on each line so a whopping total of four bolts. I did it on the ground in a bout 10 minutes. Next stop AC shop tomorrow morning for the evac and recharge.

Thanks for the help guys.

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