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Old 09-17-2019, 10:05 AM   #1
pillagenburn
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Default AC Flush the Evaporator?

I've got the A/C apart on my Vue and am getting ready to put new components in. I am unsure if the evaporator is leaking (no way to check) so as an attempt to mitigate any other issues I thought about running A/C flush through it (and only it).

I know the passages in the evaporator are probably tiny and I'm thinking I probably shouldn't attempt to flush it, but I thought I'd ask here and see if anyone has any experiences with these a/c systems.

Thanks!

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Old 09-17-2019, 12:42 PM   #2
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Default Re: AC Flush the Evaporator?

Year, engine size? Update your profile to reflect what you drive.

What extent is your idea of ac apart? Once any diyer assumes the role of refrigeration repairs, either a prescribed set of procedures are followed according to service manuals and general guidelines related to refrigeration or not. Ac repairs are unforgiving of mistakes if short cuts or overlooking certain steps are used whether intentionally or inadvertently. Every diyer assumes risks on repairs if unfamiliar with vehicle refrigeration.

Mvac sites like ackits.com can help with professional people in the business helping diyers. Other sites similar to them may exist and worth visiting otherwise becoming self taught may be important in achieving best results and avoid common mistakes.

What new parts are going in and are you familiar with the details like pag oil and O-rings? Is flushing part of system contamination from sealer use? Are you aware of GM using dye in all r134a systems to allow easier leak detection?

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Old 09-17-2019, 01:18 PM   #3
pillagenburn
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Default Re: AC Flush the Evaporator?

Quote:
Originally Posted by fdryer View Post
Year, engine size? Update your profile to reflect what you drive.

What extent is your idea of ac apart? Once any diyer assumes the role of refrigeration repairs, either a prescribed set of procedures are followed according to service manuals and general guidelines related to refrigeration or not. Ac repairs are unforgiving of mistakes if short cuts or overlooking certain steps are used whether intentionally or inadvertently. Every diyer assumes risks on repairs if unfamiliar with vehicle refrigeration.

Mvac sites like ackits.com can help with professional people in the business helping diyers. Other sites similar to them may exist and worth visiting otherwise becoming self taught may be important in achieving best results and avoid common mistakes.

What new parts are going in and are you familiar with the details like pag oil and O-rings? Is flushing part of system contamination from sealer use? Are you aware of GM using dye in all r134a systems to allow easier leak detection?
Hey sorry I'm new to this forum - I edited my sig to reflect what I drive.

As far as my definition of "apart" - I have the condensor and compressor out, expansion valve off but the lines are still in place (though I'm contemplating either replacing or flushing these).

To my knowledge no a/c sealer has been used and I'm aware of the GM dye.

The parts I have purchased, so far, are a low mileage compressor, new dryer, new condensor, and new o-ring seals (and pag oil with dye of course)

I'm just wondering if flushing the evaporator (and/or lines) is worth pursuing.

Sorry if I'm not clear in any of this, but I appreciate the help!

...
2005 Vue (150k on body):
2.2L L61 from 2006 Monte Carlo (43k mi)
5-speed (150k)

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Old 09-17-2019, 02:47 PM   #4
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Default Re: AC Flush the Evaporator?

No apologies necessary. Your descriptions seem to be about a major rebuild of your Vue's ac system. Flushing is determined on a case by case basis. With zero sealer use, your concern would be moisture absorption from an open system since pag oil has the same characteristics as DOT-3 brake fluid. Both absorb moisture when exposed to air. When ac systems are opened, capping or taping off ends reduces moisture absorption. After repairs and a system is sealed, ready for evacuation of air and moisture with an electric vacuum pump, creating a vacuum allows moisture to come out of solution. The longer a vacuum is held the more moisture boils off. Evacuation prepares the system for refilling with refrigerant. Clean refrigerant oil should appear tinted with green dye and translucent. Gray coloring is wear and tear from aluminum parts in compressors. If you see and can feel metal particles, this would indicate severe wear from moving parts, most likely from the compressor. Flushing a system can be a problem depending on which parts to flush. Evap coils rarely leak or suffer damage. Flushing evap coils may not be necessary if a severe crash didn't affect the firewall where the hvac enclosure resides. Flushing is its own problem as specific solvents are recommended in order to allow cleaning and thorough evaporation of solvents leaving zero residues that may affect ac operation. In every ac system; refrigerant, oil and dye are the only things circulating throughout a system. Anything else is considered a contaminant, interfering with ac cooling. If refrigerant oil is relatively clean, flushing the evap coil shouldn't be necessary. Your choice.

If you do not have all the info for rebuilding your system, either subscribe to alldata or Mitchell for online access to service manual info. The more you have on hand the better the chances of a repair restoring full ac function to factory specs. Listing vehicle info under your name or in your signature allows anyone to know which vehicle you have. I can send service manual info if you private message me an email address (include vehicle year, model and engine size).

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Old 09-17-2019, 03:11 PM   #5
pillagenburn
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Default Re: AC Flush the Evaporator?

Quote:
Originally Posted by fdryer View Post
No apologies necessary. Your descriptions seem to be about a major rebuild of your Vue's ac system. Flushing is determined on a case by case basis. With zero sealer use, your concern would be moisture absorption from an open system since pag oil has the same characteristics as DOT-3 brake fluid. Both absorb moisture when exposed to air. When ac systems are opened, capping or taping off ends reduces moisture absorption. After repairs and a system is sealed, ready for evacuation of air and moisture with an electric vacuum pump, creating a vacuum allows moisture to come out of solution. The longer a vacuum is held the more moisture boils off. Evacuation prepares the system for refilling with refrigerant. Clean refrigerant oil should appear tinted with green dye and translucent. Gray coloring is wear and tear from aluminum parts in compressors. If you see and can feel metal particles, this would indicate severe wear from moving parts, most likely from the compressor. Flushing a system can be a problem depending on which parts to flush. Evap coils rarely leak or suffer damage. Flushing evap coils may not be necessary if a severe crash didn't affect the firewall where the hvac enclosure resides. Flushing is its own problem as specific solvents are recommended in order to allow cleaning and thorough evaporation of solvents leaving zero residues that may affect ac operation. In every ac system; refrigerant, oil and dye are the only things circulating throughout a system. Anything else is considered a contaminant, interfering with ac cooling. If refrigerant oil is relatively clean, flushing the evap coil shouldn't be necessary. Your choice.

If you do not have all the info for rebuilding your system, either subscribe to alldata or Mitchell for online access to service manual info. The more you have on hand the better the chances of a repair restoring full ac function to factory specs. Listing vehicle info under your name or in your signature allows anyone to know which vehicle you have. I can send service manual info if you private message me an email address (include vehicle year, model and engine size).
Great, thank you for the response - the oil looked OK and i didn't notice any discoloration (i.e. anything that would indicate metal shavings or other material from seals etc had found its way into the lines) so I think I'm going to put the new o-rings on, new oil in and button it up, vacuum pump it out and put new refrigerant in.

Thanks!

...
2005 Vue (150k on body):
2.2L L61 from 2006 Monte Carlo (43k mi)
5-speed (150k)

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