Thursday, June 30, 2022

How to Recharge Auto Air Conditioning

Holy heat wave, Batman! On the hottest day of the year so far here in the Desert Southwest, I discovered something I never want to do again: drive for twelve hours straight without A/C (with the temperature right at 100 degrees). There's nothing that will melt your superpowers faster (and I was on a rescue trip at the time).

What's a girl to do? Thankfully, you don't need to call in a superhero, aka mechanic, when you can easily solve the problem with an affordable, easy-to-use A/C Pro air conditioning recharge kit. Best ten minutes and $37 I have spent this summer. Here's a quick DIY tutorial on how you, too, can beat the heat by knowing how to recharge your vehicle's air conditioning system. 
 

 
Step 1: Purchase the right kind of A/C refrigerant for your vehicle. Most vehicles after 1990 use R-134a (which complies with the EPA Clean Air Act). Check your vehicle's maintenance manual, or find the sticker under the hood, to verify. After reading online product reviews, and watching YouTube videos, I decided to go with the bestselling A/C Pro recharge kit. This kit is sold at automotive stores, Amazon, Walmart, and many other retail locations.


Step 2: Find the low pressure service port in your vehicle's engine. If you're not sure where to look for it, download the A/C Pro app for specific information linked to your car or truck model year. Mine was easy to find (a blue cap with an "L" imprinted on it). 


Step 3: Start your engine. Set A/C to its maximum cooling level and recirculation mode (with fan on highest setting).


Step 4: Place hose coupler on low pressure service port and press down. It will click into place and lock down securely. 


Step 5: Check gauge to determine if your vehicle's A/C system is low on refrigerant. My gauge reading indicated I needed a major fill (it was on zero).


Step 6: If low, remove coupler from the service port. Unscrew gauge/hose assembly from the new can of A/C Pro. Unscrew the protective shipping tab on the top of the dispenser. Screw gauge/hose back on the refrigerant can. (Be sure to wear protective gear: gloves and safety goggles.)

Step 7: Affix hose coupler to low pressure service port. Hold can upright. Squeeze dispenser trigger to begin filling A/C system with refrigerant. While squeezing the trigger, move the can from a 12 o'clock position back and forth to a 3 o'clock position (to keep the contents mixed and flowing properly). Release the trigger after about ten seconds.


Step 8: Check the gauge to see if the needle is in the green filled section. Do not overfill! If the level is still low, repeat step seven. If filled to the mid part of the green section, you are done. Check the air temperature coming out of the vents inside your car. My air was perfectly chilled at this point.

Step 9: Remove the coupler from the service port. Replace the port cap. Turn off your engine and close the hood.

I cannot even begin to express the satisfaction I felt to have solved this common air conditioning issue so quickly and so cheaply. You should have seen the big smile on my face. Not only did I save at least $100 with this DIY fix, but I learned how to keep myself out of a dangerous situation in the future. 

It would be smart for all of us to keep a canister of A/C Pro in our vehicles' emergency supply kits. I am totally sold on this product and highly recommend it. It's not just about comfort. Heat kills. I have lost count of the number of heartbreaking articles I have read this week about individuals, especially children, who have died in hot vehicles. Incredibly tragic.

You never know when you might be called upon to provide assistance with something you keep in your vehicle for emergencies. My recent rescue trip was all about rendering aid to a young family broken down roadside in excessive heat (in a remote area without services). With this weighing on my mind and heart, I wanted to share a product that I now consider essential. Let's all be safe out there!











Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


FOLLOW US ON:

14 comments:

  1. An excellent DIY article on recharging your auto air conditioning. Heat definitely kills, especially when driving through the desert in summertime. We once drove from Phoenix to the California coast in daytime heat in July in a VW van with no air conditioning. So I know exactly what you describe here and how hot desert heat can be.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Elf. Oh, how I would love to have one of those classic VW vans! I know that was a sweltering trip for you. When I was still living and teaching in Iowa, I purchased my first car, and it came without A/C. Wouldn't you know it, but I was offered another teaching position in the heat of Texas soon after buying that car. Those were hot years (until I could afford to buy a new vehicle with air conditioning).

      Delete
  2. Excellent tip. With our previous older vehicle, we had to do this as well. I can't imagine driving in some parts of the USA without air conditioning. Until my hubby did this for our old vehicle, I had no idea such a thing existed. I'm sure you'll be helping others like me who are unfamiliar with this easy DIY solution to no air conditioning in the car.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. With all of the crazy heat waves this year, I can't imagine being without A/C. Areas of the country that are normally more temperate, are deadly hot, hot, HOT! Thanks for sharing your experience with DIY auto air conditioning recharging. It's something all drivers should know how to do in this time of unpredictable weather and climate warming.

      Delete
  3. This is a very informative article on how to recharge your cars air conditioning. Heat can be very dangerous and air conditioning is essential in very hot weather. I cannot imagine what it would have been like driving through the desert on such a hot day for so long with no air con! This A/C Pro air conditioning recharge kit sounds a very useful piece of kit.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! I had to be peeled off the driver's seat after that drive (and hosed down). This product, to me, is the greatest invention ever. I loved learning something new that made such a difference. And, of course, I loved saving a significant amount of time and money with this easy fix.

      Delete
  4. I had no idea you could refill your own automobile air conditioning refrigerant! I would have taken it to the shop and no doubt, paid a hefty price for an easy fix. Thank you so much for this product introduction and the step by step tutorial on how to recharge auto air conditioning.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think most of us have always assumed this had to be done at an automotive shop. It was so easy and I felt safe doing it myself. I figure I saved at least $150. It's the time and convenience factor, as well. And then there is the satisfaction of solving something yourself. That was the reward for me.

      Delete
  5. Diana, you are one of the most capable and intrepid people I know! I'm so happy you were able to refill your car's leaking A/C with refrigerant yourself, and so affordably. This is something my husband did when we were driving a much older car (and in much worse shape) than our current vehicle, although all our cars have been second-hand and a minimum of 15 years old (most much older). I don't drive or know my way around a car (a side-effect of growing up in Manhattan, where no one can afford to own a parking space!), and I am full of admiration at your self-sufficiency in so many areas. Well done you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for seeing me as capable and intrepid. It is so lovely to be seen that way. You mirror the things we all need to believe about ourselves. As for what you shared about your "well-seasoned" vehicles, I can relate. Last month I purchased a classic Subaru Legacy Outback. I've named her "Elvira." She's been around the block more than a few times in her past, but haven't we all at this time in our lives? You know how I feel about giving new life to things that others might pass up. Given the outrageous cost of even used vehicles right now, I am grateful for my "new" old wheels. Elvira deserves my best care, as I appreciate having her in my life (so I can get back to my missions).

      Delete
  6. A great DIY, Diana, I have done this myself several times and you are right it is so easy and so worth it to try this first. I'm so glad you're back in the cool again. Good thinking, most people would have gone to a garage and paid a lot more money.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Sam! I figured you had done this fix given your professional work background. I knew you would be familiar with this solution. How great that we can make good things happen for our vehicles in such an affordable manner.

      Delete
  7. Glad you found an easier way to fix the air conditioning in a car, especially now that summer is truly upon us. You are so talented and unafraid to try things. I'm crazy with admiration for your tenacity and skills. Thanks for this, you just never know when you might be the one in need of this fix! You rock Diana Wenzel!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Aww... thank you for the beautiful affirmations. You just "recharged" my system. Thanks for filling me up.

      Delete

Review This Reviews Quick View Home Page

The Review This Contributors



Cynthia SylvestermouseCynthia SylvestermouseDawn Rae BDawn Rae BMary Beth - mbgphotoMary Beth - mbgphotoBrite-IdeasBrite-IdeasWednesday ElfWednesday ElfOlivia MorrisOlivia MorrisRenaissanceWoman2010RenaissanceWomanLou16Lou16The Savvy AgeThe Savvy AgeMargaret SchindelMargaret SchindelRaintree AnnieRaintree AnnieTreasures by BrendaTreasures by BrendaSam MonacoSam MonacoTracey BoyerTracey BoyerBarbRadBarbRadBev OwensBev OwensBuckHawkBuckHawkDecoratingforEventsDecoratingforEventsHeather426Heather426Coletta TeskeColetta TeskeMissMerFaeryMissMerFaeryMickie_GMickie_G



Review This is Dedicated to the
Memory of Our Beloved Friend and Fellow Contributor

Susan DeppnerSusan Deppner


We may be apart, but
You Are Not Forgotten





“As an Amazon Associate I (we) earn from purchases.” Disclosure Statement

X