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R12 Refrigerant


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Bertimus

So I live in southern california where R12 is now illegal. I could get a recharge if I cross the border to tijuana, but I'd rather leave that as my last option. How have you guys dealt with this? Conversion kits? R12 sources? Thank you for your help

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Ronnie

R-12 use to be available on eBay. I've not looked for a while since mine was already changed over to 134a when I bought it and my other 2 vehicles are 134a..

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Bertimus
23 hours ago, Ronnie said:

R-12 use to be available on eBay. I've not looked for a while since mine was already changed over to 134a when I bought it and my other 2 vehicles are 134a.

Does the conversion to 134a work well for you?

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Ron Walker

I converted my '89 to 134a in 2001. At that time I needed a new "evaporator" and "drier", along with the conversion kit. I can't personally attest to the reason for the parts, but 20 years ago, the cost was $477 for the conversion. Since then, I had a "pressure switch" that was leaking and replaced in '04 at cost of $97, and reprogrammed A/C system trouble codes in '07. There was a slight leak detected at the condenser and another low pressure switch replaced with recharge in '09 at cost of $125. I've done a couple of recharges via a can of 134a which you can do yourself.  I didn't replace the condenser and assume that there is a small leak that continues to cause the need for periodic addition of a can of the 134a. 

If I recall, someone told me that the molecular make-up of the 134a versus the R12 is different, so the system may not be totally compatible for the change, what with "O" rings, etc. involved.  However, if you want a cold AC, and the R12 no longer available on the common market, there is little choice but to make the conversion. 

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Ronnie

My car cools really well with the 134a and so far, since I bought the car in 2007, no mechanical problems. I've had to change the low pressure switch and the low side temperature sensor. I do have to add about a can of 134a every spring. I've had to every year since I got the car. Don't know where it goes. I have a Freon sniffer device but it never detects a leak. What Ron walker said about molecule size of the 134a might allow it to slowly leak out over the winter. Although R-12 might cool slightly better I see no reason not to change over to 134a. Just changing fittings and throwing in cans of 134a can ruin your AC system so be sure get it changed over properly if you decide to do it.

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DAVES89

All my cars are still r-12. And over the years I have bought about a dozen cans and a couple of oil cans so I should be set. I even bought a set of r-12 gauges so I have that going for me, which is nice.

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2seater

I replaced my compressor (drooling oil), condenser and accumulator on an otherwise still functioning a/c system on my ‘90. I found the local repair garage I have been using for some time had the equipment to evacuate my R12 and would refill it with R12 for $75/lb when I was done with my repairs. They are only allowed to refill R12 if the system holds perfect vacuum and aside from having to replace the valve core in the high side connector,  mine was refilled with R12 and works as designed. They also gave me credit for the R12 they had removed at the beginning. Total cost was less than $200 at that time, two years ago.

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Padgett

Only car I have that is still R-12 is the Judge and if I ever need to open the system will convert. Reattas work really well on R34A ($5 at Walmart) with a slightly different oriface tube (think White but not certain) and a quick flush (may not be needed with new lubricants).

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Ron Walker

Thanks for the info on the "hot shot 2" replacement for R12. Like Padgett above, I have an older Pontiac (not as cool as a Judge) still using R12 and  while the system is still "cold", who knows what the future will bring. I'll keep the "hot shot 2" in mind.  

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Padgett

When I bought the Judge it was a $600 gas guzzler. I just rarely sell a car. Would like to add either a 5 speed or an overdrive.

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