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2003 Volkswagen Eurovan AC Troubleshooting

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  • #16
    Hopefully those pics help identify the compressor and type. If it helps with identification, the center nut on the clutch is 14mm. As you can see in those pics, the clutch's "arms" are clearly broken and worn out, but it does still seem to be "clutching" for the moment.

    FWIW, I checked pressures the other day prior to turning the engine on (it'd been sitting for a few days) and the pressures on both sides were reading equal and correct for the ambient temp. So I guess that at least means I'm not over-pressured?

    Also, the temp in the rear AC wasn't blowing cold yesterday either. I was thinking that if the problem was the front expansion valve, then perhaps the rear valve was working OK and it'd blow cold despite the front not blowing cold. Perhaps I'm way off on that assumption.

    I'm thinking that since obviously the clutch needs replaced, I might as well replace the whole compressor, along with the dryer, and just flush the lines to ensure I'm starting with fresh system innards.

    On a VW website, I saw a post where they espoused running an AC flush chemical through the system, then filling the system with nitrogen to remove all air, then pull the vacuum, and finally then fill. Thoughts on this approach?

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    • #17
      That compressor is the one with mechanical pressure regulator inside Remove the compressor (degas and recover gas first) and check oil, if oil is nice and clean do the oil balance with the new compressor (leave @20ml extra in the new compressor due to dryer replacement ) run the system at least 1/2 hr with the vacuum pump (this way you are getting read of the air and moisture inside ) and regas the system. if the oil is black than you have to do a manual system flush
      Last edited by nickyanc; 4 weeks ago.

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      • #18
        That sounds like a plan. By "oil balance" I want to make sure I understand what you mean.

        Are you saying measure what comes out of the old compressor, and measure what is in the new compressor, and then adjust the amount of oil that is in the new compressor to match what I poured out of the old one, plus 20ml of oil to compensate for an approximation of what will be lost by replacing the dryer? And that 20ml would just be added to the new compressor, yes?

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        • #19
          Also, are you saying that the nitrogen "flush" the person recommended is unnecessary since I will be pulling the vacuum?

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          • #20
            Finally (maybe...) I found this kit. Seems like a decent deal to get all that stuff. But do you think it is worthwhile buying a second expansion valve and replacing the one at the back at the same time? Looks like only one is included.

            https://www.buyautoparts.com/buynow/...xoCmmkQAvD_BwE

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            • #21
              You got it right with the oil balance.You don’t need nitrogen flush unless you have the black oil.I wouldn’t worry about Tx valves (unless you have black oil and need to flush the system)cause i don’t think you have any problems with them.

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              • #22
                Great, thanks! I guess I can probably pull the compressor tomorrow, and then determine if I just need a compressor or that full kit.

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                • #23
                  I removed the compressor just now. Zero oil came out of the suction or discharge ports, and only a very small amount (like 7 mL-the lowest mark on my beaker is 15 and it's roughly halfway up to that mark) came out the side port. I was just surprised to find such a small amount of oil.

                  I opened the extra port on the back, and turned the pulley with it upside down, and nothing. Incidentally, turning the pulley doesn't seem to elicit much feel of any compression going on, though I can sorta hear sucking noises from inside. I don't feel anything with my finger over the port(s).

                  The oil is nice and clean looking, clear and greenish.

                  So, I think I should be good to just buy a new compressor and dryer, drain any oil in the new compressor, install compressor with about 27 ML oil inside, put it all together, vacuum, fill, and enjoy cold air. Right? Anything I'm missing or not thinking about?

                  Thanks so much!

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                  • #24
                    This compressor has a drain plug,look @ the body towards the middle or closer to the front where the pulley is and drain the oil through there.

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                    • #25
                      Yup, found that. That is where the 7mL came from. Zero came out of any of the three ports on the back of the compressor.

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                      • #26
                        ok, I would put in about 50ml of oil in the new compressor because you could have a saturated R Dryer and a lot of oil could be trapped in there.

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                        • #27
                          Received and installed the compressor and receiver/drier this afternoon (along with new o-rings). Pulled the vacuum-I let the pump run for about 35 minutes and it was down to 30hg. About 4 hours later (with the pump still hooked up) it had dropped down to 18hg. I disconnected the pump at this point.

                          First question (I'm sure I know the answer...) is there any acceptable amount of loss of vacuum?

                          Second question: Any tips for finding the vacuum at this point-prior to filling the system?

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                          • #28
                            Every connection is potential leak, so be sure your manifold connections aren't leaking.

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                            • #29
                              I really don't understand the reason of leaving the system on vacuum for such a long period of time,you will be aware of any leaks in the system but you can not find the leaks unless you drop some gas in the system and use a leak detector to find the leaks.I only leave the system on vacuum for 5-10min which will be enough to tell me if there are any big leaks in the system,as for the small leaks I certainly don't want and don't have the time to sit and wait for such a long period of time to just find out that are some leaks in the system and than drop some gas in and search for the leaks.I have a very good leak detector and after vacuum test I do leak detection by dropping 200ml of gas in the system.When you leave the system in vacuum test mode you should either disconnect the vacuum pump from the gauges or isolate it with a tap so that you only have the gauges and your AC system in the vacuum state.

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                              • #30
                                Fair enough! I've just seen lots of people talk about leaving a vacuum on for a long time, up to overnight.

                                Appreciate the help and tips!

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