Adding A/C to a non A/C VX?! - Page 3 - Fuelly Forums

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Old 11-04-2007, 01:28 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by mrmad View Post
I converted the Nissan I had and it was working fine when I sold it 2 years later. I converted the wife's 4runner at the same time and 4 years later the AC is still cold. Neither produced cold air as well as they were with R12, but they are cold enough.
Then again, 'cold enough' is a subjective thing hat depends on a number of factors. One is obviosly climate. It has been my finding that converted R12 systems REALLY start to peter out at around 90-95 degrees. And if we are talking 100+ degrees, forget it. Here in Sacramento, 100+ degrees during the summer is not too uncommon. And under these circumstances, the converted R12 system that I had in a Civic some years back was virtually useless.

The kind of driving also made a difference. R134a is actually quite a bit harder to condense than R12. In fact, the condenser itself is probably one of the BIGGEST differences between a system designed for R12 vs R134a. Because of this, converted R12 systems tend to not work well when the car is not moving fast enough to move LOTS of air through the condensor. Trying to get cold air when sitting in traffic is a lost cause.

Finally, there is heat tolerance. Let's face it. Some of us just take it better than others. And I don't take it too well. In fact, I find that MANY A/Cs just don't cut it even with R12. I would HATE to see how they would perform with R134a.

But the bottom line can be summed up rather quickly: if you are installing an A/C in a car that has none, want to run R134a, and have a choice between using a system designed for R12 OR R134a, why would you choose to run an R12 system and retrofit it rather than running an R134a system (which will work better in the first place)?
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Old 11-05-2007, 07:30 PM   #22
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wow, lots of great knowledge on this board. I actually came across a VX with A/C that I'm in the process of getting. Its great to know that you can come here and get very knowledgable answers and solutions to different technical questions.
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Old 11-05-2007, 07:44 PM   #23
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get one of those old VW swamp coolers... much cheaper and easier to install

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Old 11-05-2007, 07:51 PM   #24
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haha thats a good one. It looks like a rocket launcher.
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Old 11-05-2007, 09:53 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by StorminMatt View Post
Then again, 'cold enough' is a subjective thing hat depends on a number of factors. One is obviosly climate. It has been my finding that converted R12 systems REALLY start to peter out at around 90-95 degrees. And if we are talking 100+ degrees, forget it. Here in Sacramento, 100+ degrees during the summer is not too uncommon. And under these circumstances, the converted R12 system that I had in a Civic some years back was virtually useless.

The kind of driving also made a difference. R134a is actually quite a bit harder to condense than R12. In fact, the condenser itself is probably one of the BIGGEST differences between a system designed for R12 vs R134a. Because of this, converted R12 systems tend to not work well when the car is not moving fast enough to move LOTS of air through the condensor. Trying to get cold air when sitting in traffic is a lost cause.

Finally, there is heat tolerance. Let's face it. Some of us just take it better than others. And I don't take it too well. In fact, I find that MANY A/Cs just don't cut it even with R12. I would HATE to see how they would perform with R134a.

But the bottom line can be summed up rather quickly: if you are installing an A/C in a car that has none, want to run R134a, and have a choice between using a system designed for R12 OR R134a, why would you choose to run an R12 system and retrofit it rather than running an R134a system (which will work better in the first place)?

I live in the desert in So Cal, and have lived in Stockton, CA, 50 miles south of Sacramento. I can attest it gets stupidly hot in both locations. As far as heat tolerance, I guess you have a point, but the converted AC in my wife's 4Runner can keep people comfortable in the back seat on a 108 degree day, so I cannot complain, especially since it's practially impossible to get R12 for it. I've yet to be in a car built since the mid 80s that had the AC my father's 72 Buick had when I was a kid. I can remember asking him to turn it down because the damn thing would freeze you to death irregardless of how hot or humid it was outside.

I think the main reason why you would want to put an R12 system in an old car and then convert it is because you can find an AC system that was built for the car, meaning it will bolt in. Maybe there are particular models of cars the crossed over between when the change from R12 to R134 was made, and if so, yes you'd be wise to put the R134 system in. But if not, I would much rather fit an AC system designed for the car where all the hoses and brackets fit and then convert it. This is what I'm doing for my 89 CRX.
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