Frequently Asked Questions
How Often Should My Car/Truck Air Conditioner Be Serviced?
We recommend servicing be done once a year. We also suggest that if there is a choice of when to do the service, springtime is good. Checking out the air conditioning system before the summer rush of business allows more for more flexibility in scheduling.
Should I Have My Air Conditioner Retrofitted from the old R12 to the newer R134A refrigerant?
Maybe!! R12 was used in vehicles through 1993 with some exceptions. Some car air conditioners do not function well after retrofitting; a few do not work at all. There are also many that do work well. Front wheel drive cars with electric cooling fans often are reasonable candidates. If major repairs are being done, the compressor is being replaced anyway, that is a reasonable time to consider a retrofit. You should also know that a study in the 1990’s showed that vehicles that were retrofitted did suffer a higher compressor failure rate than those that remained with R12 refrigerant. If you are considering it, ask our service adviser or service manager.
Should I Change to XYZ Refrigerant?
There are “blend” refrigerants available, usually through the internet or non-standard distribution channels. Some are actually considered safe by the EPA (which makes no judgment as to whether they work) and some, particularly hydrocarbon based (think butane and propane) are unsafe and illegal. In these categories FREEZE12, FRIGC, HOT SHOT come to mind. A couple problems here are that air conditioning manufacturers in general do not offer warranty when using non-standard refrigerants and also, if a non-standard refrigerant is used in an automotive system, will there be ongoing service and repair support for that refrigerant? Or will the next service center have to treat the system as being contaminated, with additional procedures and expense involved?
Should My Car/Truck Air Conditioner be Operated in the Winter?
Yes, provided the temperature is not below freezing. If you do not use the air conditioner regularly during some seasons, try to run it weekly for five or more minutes. This will help to maintain lubrication for moving parts like the compressor and sealing for hoses and O-rings. The refrigeration oil is carried throughout the system by the flow of the refrigerant.