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Old June 12th, 2013, 05:35 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default My AC did not recharge correctly! what did i do?

ok.. I have a bmw E46...
the AC was not as cold as it used to be..
so I asked my friend to help me recharge the AC.

I got a can of 134a.. he had the cable.
we used this method:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x4ew1FYjNEE

tested it.. while parked.. it felt cold (but could not really tell if it was cooler).. but did not test drive it. The car sat there.

2 days later...took the car out. turned on the AC.
it started to blow air... but never got cool!
waited .. drove for 10 mins.. still no cold air.
turned off and on a few times... but no cold air.

so.. what do you guys think is the issue? what can I do to test it?

Thanks

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Old June 12th, 2013, 08:14 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Make sure you're not leaking refrigerant.
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Old June 12th, 2013, 08:32 PM   #3 (permalink)
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yeah.. that is what I am afraid off.. but it was not leaking before!

I am hoping it is something else.. maybe a blown fuse? that stopped the compressor?
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Old June 13th, 2013, 06:54 AM   #4 (permalink)
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The compressor is belt driven, at least, every automotive air con I've ever seen has a belt driven compressor...
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Old June 13th, 2013, 07:09 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dan330 View Post
yeah.. that is what I am afraid off.. but it was not leaking before!

I am hoping it is something else.. maybe a blown fuse? that stopped the compressor?
How do you know it wasn't leaking before? SOMETHING caused you to need to re-charge it. Have you put gauges on it to check the pressures? Have you checked the temperatures at the vents with a thermometer (the way many automakers have their techs check for proper A/C operation)?
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Old June 13th, 2013, 10:59 AM   #6 (permalink)
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ok.. it might have had a leak before.. but it was not a big leak.
the AC was working..just not stronge enough..and with summer coming in Texas, I wanted it to fully recharge it.

update:
yesterday it was 93 degrees when I tried it.. and it was only giving out a very very little cool air. it was blowing air fine.. just not cool.. not enough to help in that temp.
this morning.. outside temp was 80 degrees.. and it worked fine. still not as cold as I remembered, but cold. so.. what has changed?
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Old June 14th, 2013, 10:06 PM   #7 (permalink)
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update:
today.. it was 95 degrees outside.

the AC was putting out very little cool air.. maybe about 10 degree cooler than outside air. Sometimes.. it felt like there was no cool air.

at stop.. in neutral (manual 5 speed).. a few times.. I can see the RPM fall a little. the engine kind of sputters.. and I feel cooler air come out of the vents. it is like the compressor finally kicks in for a few seconds.

maybe the Freon is still low? or we did it wrong and released some of it
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Old June 17th, 2013, 06:08 AM   #8 (permalink)
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You could have a bad pressure switch also.
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Old June 27th, 2013, 02:06 PM   #9 (permalink)
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still sounds like low freon to me and or moisture in the lines. The best thing to do is pull a vacuum on it. It may be a little too much for a DIY at home thing but most pro's will pull a vacuum on it, make sure that it holds a negative pressure for a certain length of time and then go from there. If it does then you don't have a leak obviously but this also sucks all moisture out of the system. If it doesn't hold a vacuum then you obviously have a leak. At that point using leak detecting dye would need to come into play to see where the leak is.
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Old June 27th, 2013, 02:49 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I am starting to think there is air or moisture in the lines.

I put to much pressure in once.. and bleed it out.. while engine was on.. it was not cold Freon coming out.. it was not very cold to my skin.
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Old June 27th, 2013, 03:22 PM   #11 (permalink)
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may just want to take it to a professional.
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Old June 29th, 2013, 02:08 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Dan, check to make sure your pulley on the AC compressor isn't locked up.
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Old June 29th, 2013, 09:34 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I actually just had a problem like this on my Ranger.

I looked in the owner's manual and saw which relay controlled my ac compressor. It turns out there were a few relays in there that were the same as it was. One was for lights on a trailer.

I popped it out and swapped it and my ac worked just fine.

Worth a shot.
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Old June 30th, 2013, 07:15 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Normally when you have to add freon, it leaked in the first place. They sell a kit that has new o rings ,probably right next to the freon. At least that solved my problem.

The kit was inexpensive, but you'll have to buy another can of freon.
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Old September 28th, 2013, 01:56 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dan330 View Post
update:
today.. it was 95 degrees outside.

the AC was putting out very little cool air.. maybe about 10 degree cooler than outside air. Sometimes.. it felt like there was no cool air.

at stop.. in neutral (manual 5 speed).. a few times.. I can see the RPM fall a little. the engine kind of sputters.. and I feel cooler air come out of the vents. it is like the compressor finally kicks in for a few seconds.

maybe the Freon is still low? or we did it wrong and released some of it

It sounds like the thermostat is stuck and telling the compressor it's cool enough or electrical open not engaging the clutch except when the wire makes brief contact and that's when it seems too try to work. Try turning on ac high and listen to the compressor click on and off or have someone turn it on and off manually. If no clicking the compressor isn't engaging.
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Old October 26th, 2013, 09:44 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Check the relays for the AC compressor first. Easiest and cheapest thing to fix first. I don't know of any AC compressor that doesn't have an electric clutch. Then check that you didn't add too much freon. It can easily happen. After that, check for leaks.
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