ac recharge port

Eric_R_Kissell at Eric_R_Kissell at
Wed Jun 29 10:19:49 EDT 2005

'tis the season of AC threads, so let me post this now in hopes of helping
others with AC questions. DIY AC work is not that difficult, though you
must take care to contain any refrigerant such as R12 (or R134A for that
matter) to be nice to our environment.

Information about DIY AC charging may be found at:

and discussions about alternative refrigerants are at:

I have converted to an alternative refrigerant. I am in no way affiliated
with any alternative refrigerant supplier but I am a satisfied customer of
the following:

Read their info and their FAQ and see if you think this is the way to go. I
have had good luck with two cars.

Get a set of decent gauges from Harbor Freight for a decent price ($50). I
got a R134A guage set. I understand that regulations require system
conversion (i.e. fittings) to R134A before an alternative refrigerant can
be used, so I got the R134A set and converted the fittings on my old Audis.
This way I can also work on newer cars with my AC gauges set.  Conversion
fittings are available from your FLAPS or online at envirosafe or acsouce
or ackits or azmobileair. Some cheap fittings may leak, so look for a
little bit of quality (I am not sure what the FLAPS carry).  Gauges similar
to the ones I have can be seen at:

Harbor Freight also has an inexpensive ($8.99)  compressed air driven
vacuum pump that was adequate for my conversions to envirosafe.

It does not pull "deep vacuum" but it pulls enough for what I needed. You
can also use the inlet side of various compressors to pull vacuum.

A Mastercool Auto AC Basics manual  is available from and - The manual has, among other things, some diagnostics
telling you what to check for various high-side and low-side gauge

I agree with the advice to look for leaks if the system is leaking down.

If you buy envirosafe refrigerant, get the stuff with leak detection dye in
it (called "dye-charge" on their site). Not only does the dye help you find
a leak with the proper detection light, it also is able to be shipped
without Haz Mat issues due to a technicality that the dye enacts.

Also, envirosafe has a nifty and inexpensive little plastic oil checker
that can be used to evaluate whether your current oil charge is sufficient.
I think they must have invented it because it is a pretty clever idea that
I have never seen anywhere else.

I have 1986-1991 Type 44's. For charging with envirosafe, I have found that
the best place to connect the low side is at the compressor. The high side
connection is in front of the radiator.

Let's not start a alternative versus traditional refrigerant thread here. I
am a believer in alternative (hydrocarbon) refrigerants. I also have a bit
of experience in refrigeration (see email addy).

Eric Kissell

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