With the Summer soon approaching us, many of us will be heading on long car journeys to enjoy the glorious sunshine. Even in the UK, it can get hot in the summer. Obviously there is nothing worse than sitting in a sweltering hot car when you’re stuck in traffic! Typically the most quickest and cost-effective way to cool yourself in a car is with Air Conditioning. Like all other parts of the car, if you want it to function properly, you must keep it regularly maintained. Your car’s Air Con system relies on refrigerant to operate and work properly. When the refrigerant gets low, it is not able to cool properly.
If you want to beat the heat this summer when travelling in the car, we have the perfect guide for you. Here is everything you need to know about how to you recharge your car’s Air Con.
Can I recharge my Air Con myself?
Is your car Air Con blowing out warm air or releasing a bad odour? No problem, it is probably low on refrigerant. This is because over time, tiny amounts of refrigerant can leak. An Air Con recharge can bring back cold air when you most need it, as well as improve your fuel efficiency as there is less strain on the system and engine.
You can recharge the Air Con system yourself with a charging kit and some refrigerant. It is inexpensive, quick and easy to perform, but risks the cause of problems further down the line, if not done correctly. This only applies to your vehicle if it uses 134a or r-134a refrigerant.
If you have a hybrid or electric car, it is not advised to recharge the Air Con yourself, as it can cause damage. The safest option would be to arrange a qualified person to assist as the handling and storage of refrigerants is a challenge. Automotive chains, dealerships, independent garages and specialist vehicle air con engineers can handle this job type efficiently.
- AC Dispenser with trigger and low side gauge
- Refrigerant (12-28 ounces, depending on Vehicle requirement)
- Safety Glasses/Goggles and Gloves
Turn on your Air Con. Start your Car and turn your Air Con to Maximum or High.
- Check if the Air Con Compressor is engaging.
- An Air Con compressor should be spinning with the accessory belt when the AC is on high.
- If the clutch on the compressor is engaging, then it is likely that the system is low on refrigerant.
- If the clutch is not engaging the compressor, then the AC system is either very low on refrigerant or there is an electrical fault.
- Next Test the pressure by turning the vehicle off and locate the low side pressure port.
- This is located on the passenger side of the engine bay. It has a black or grey cap on it with letter “L”.
- Attach the recharge hose from the kit.
- To do this, place the quick-connect fitting – found on the end of the recharge hose – over the port and push down firmly until you hear it click into place.
- Restart the vehicle and monitor the gauge.
- Make sure the air conditioner is on the highest settings.
- Watch out for the AC Compressor to engage the clutch. Once it is engaged – you want a reading to be as close to 40 psi as possible.
- Thread the refrigerant can onto the recharge hose.
- This allows you to slowly top up the AC system with liquid refrigerant.
- Once the can is installed, hold upright and squeeze the trigger for 5-10 seconds.
- Check the temperature inside the car.
- Use a thermometer, insert into one of the AC vents on the driver’s side and note the temperature reading. A fully charged system will blow air as cold as 28 degrees.
- The pressure reading should continue to remain near 40 psi.
That’s the final step complete, you have successfully recharged your Air Con!
If you’re wondering how often you need to recharge your AC system, the recommended guideline is every 2 years. Although this will vary from model to model, so you may need to check your manufacturer’s handbook. You should notice a change beforehand, such as warmer air blowing out or taking longer to reach the temperature you require.
What can Advanced AutoGlazing Offer?
Left it too late to Recharge your Air Con? Why not let Advanced AutoGlazing help you?
Our industry professionals will get your Air Con back up and running in no time, keeping your Vehicle clean and cool for the hot weather. No matter if you need an Air Con Recharge or Repair, we can assist you.
Get in touch with us on 01206 50 49 50 to book your Air Con Pre Inspection service.