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Author Topic: Air-conditioning Suspect Gas leak  (Read 170 times)

Offline NikNak

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Air-conditioning Suspect Gas leak
« on: July 11, 2021, 05:42:35 PM »
Hi new to the Forum i have had my Alhambra 7v9 for good few years now but the A/C has never worked due to system loosing Gas , I did top it up some years ago and did operate fine but soon lost its Gas , I suspect the leak is from the Pipe near slam Panel on Left where it bends into a U shape and runs on Left chassis leg.

Offline brianh

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Re: Air-conditioning Suspect Gas leak
« Reply #1 on: July 11, 2021, 07:17:17 PM »
Theres a couple of places that you might get a slow leak from. One of the common ones is the a/c Dryer cap on the end of the condensor, I had a leak from a badly fitted o ring on the condensor which we only discovered on changing the condensor for suspected dryer leak (cap wouldn't come off when tried). There is a clip a few inches back on the pipe that runs to the cabin, which we found was somewhat corroded when I had to replace the pipe that joins to that pipe, I'd suspect this is the one you describe.

The usual way of tracing leaks is to fill the system with oil/dye and that then shows up any leaks if they develop. This can be easier to locate using a pair of yellow goggles and a suitable lamp such as this
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Detector-Leaks-Conditioning-Engines-Gearbox/dp/B07198BZRY
There are simpler sets available that just include the light and goggles.

Alternatively you could try leak detection by filling with nitrogen, though on a slow leak you may not find it. Leak detector spray on your suspect area may show it up (soapy water can work for this as well, your looking for it to start blowing bubbles from the suspect pipework)

The rear a/c can be problematic as its an exposed run as well, if yours has the dual zone setup (not all do, if you do you will have vents in the roof in the back)

Offline SirDavidAlhambra

  • Sir David Alhambra.
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Re: Air-conditioning Suspect Gas leak
« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2021, 07:19:18 PM »
Hello, friend. If u take it to kwik fits then they have a machine that tries to pump it up and it tells u if there is a leak, also u donít pay if it doesnít work. Just got to make sure u r sure they r ok garage
I drive a Seat Alhambra 1.9Tdi which has 115bhp and an automatic gearbox.

I am happy to help you with all your questions. I am not a qualified mechanic but seem to be better at fixing my car than even the most experienced garages.

I have lots of friends here and very much enjoy talking with you all.

Always remember, a motor car is a serious tool and should be treated with respect. Put your safety first, always.

Offline NikNak

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Re: Air-conditioning Suspect Gas leak
« Reply #3 on: July 11, 2021, 07:46:20 PM »
Thanks for your reply i will have to have a good look around joints , Im sure i can remember the bracket welded to the pipe on the pipe on the slam panel i seen some dye around the weld will have to get it gassed and checked .

Mine does have digital climate and has the control on the dash to control the rear blower motor in rear left quarter from the front panel so not sure if this does A/C too? As mine is the 2004 does not have the roof vents etc like a few years later ones did .

Theres a couple of places that you might get a slow leak from. One of the common ones is the a/c Dryer cap on the end of the condensor, I had a leak from a badly fitted o ring on the condensor which we only discovered on changing the condensor for suspected dryer leak (cap wouldn't come off when tried). There is a clip a few inches back on the pipe that runs to the cabin, which we found was somewhat corroded when I had to replace the pipe that joins to that pipe, I'd suspect this is the one you describe.

The usual way of tracing leaks is to fill the system with oil/dye and that then shows up any leaks if they develop. This can be easier to locate using a pair of yellow goggles and a suitable lamp such as this
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Detector-Leaks-Conditioning-Engines-Gearbox/dp/B07198BZRY
There are simpler sets available that just include the light and goggles.

Alternatively you could try leak detection by filling with nitrogen, though on a slow leak you may not find it. Leak detector spray on your suspect area may show it up (soapy water can work for this as well, your looking for it to start blowing bubbles from the suspect pipework)

The rear a/c can be problematic as its an exposed run as well, if yours has the dual zone setup (not all do, if you do you will have vents in the roof in the back)

Offline NikNak

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Re: Air-conditioning Suspect Gas leak
« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2021, 07:50:43 PM »
Thanks for reply Ah thatís an idea i could get them to do that.

Hello, friend. If u take it to kwik fits then they have a machine that tries to pump it up and it tells u if there is a leak, also u donít pay if it doesnít work. Just got to make sure u r sure they r ok garage

Offline brianh

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Re: Air-conditioning Suspect Gas leak
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2021, 07:53:55 PM »
Mine has the same panel, but only has front a/c so the presence of the rear buttons doesn't tell you anything definitive. Best way to be sure is have a look for pipes running under the car. Only 2 to the rear heater would suggest its a heater only.

Mine is petrol so slightly different.

If that pipe has developed a hole, you might find a pipe splice kit to be the best way to fix it. Not sure where the pipes next joint is, we couldn't see on mine. But its a straight piece of pipe at least! The joint there has 3 o rings on it, my experience with those joints is the spring clip will be the cause of problems, and if its not working you'd know about it and it wouldn't be a slow leak. I've had one let go on a car, and it sounded like someone had taken a potshot at me (loud bang as the pipe came out of the joint and hit the underside of the bonnet). Slow leak more likely a trapped single o ring, or a pinhole leak, possibly under a clip so its only a very slight leak and difficult to find as a result.

We had to cut away some of the plastic on mine under the headlight to access the joint. The clip is around 2-3 inches back from the joint towards the cabin.

Offline brianh

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Offline Mirez

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Re: Air-conditioning Suspect Gas leak
« Reply #7 on: July 12, 2021, 11:12:03 AM »
Its actually easier then that, if you have vents on the roof above the second and third row then you have twin A/C. If you don't then its a single system.

The pipe you originally mention is one of the three points that failts.

1) Receiver dryer cap - most common
2) Fractured pipe from compressor
3) Join below drivers side headlight.

If its the latter you can replace it easily enough although a LOT of stuff has to come out to access it. Given the age of the car, it's far easier to use a Dremel to remove a section of the fibre/plastic board which will give you access.
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Offline NikNak

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Re: Air-conditioning Suspect Gas leak
« Reply #8 on: July 12, 2021, 11:53:42 AM »
Hi yes I see that pipe which is mounted on slam panel and goes  under headlight which sort of flares out where it joins on that side then runs to back by bulkhead and across.


Its actually easier then that, if you have vents on the roof above the second and third row then you have twin A/C. If you don't then its a single system.

The pipe you originally mention is one of the three points that failts.

1) Receiver dryer cap - most common
2) Fractured pipe from compressor
3) Join below drivers side headlight.

If its the latter you can replace it easily enough although a LOT of stuff has to come out to access it. Given the age of the car, it's far easier to use a Dremel to remove a section of the fibre/plastic board which will give you access.

Offline brianh

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Re: Air-conditioning Suspect Gas leak
« Reply #9 on: July 12, 2021, 07:29:00 PM »
+1 on the dremel for access to that. We didn't use a dremel as such, but a similar tool on an air compressor to cut around the pipe. I had to replace the pipe from the compressor after the roll restrictor bolt snapped in two and the result of that was it snapped the solid pipe that joins the compressor too close to the compressor joint to repair any other way.

Offline NikNak

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Re: Air-conditioning Suspect Gas leak
« Reply #10 on: July 12, 2021, 08:07:52 PM »
Hi yes I think I know what joint you mean itís like a flared joint , so how does this joint come apart is it a special tool to release it , I Remember  looking at on in a scrapyard a while back.

This is the joint I mean .

Mine has the same panel, but only has front a/c so the presence of the rear buttons doesn't tell you anything definitive. Best way to be sure is have a look for pipes running under the car. Only 2 to the rear heater would suggest its a heater only.

Mine is petrol so slightly different.

If that pipe has developed a hole, you might find a pipe splice kit to be the best way to fix it. Not sure where the pipes next joint is, we couldn't see on mine. But its a straight piece of pipe at least! The joint there has 3 o rings on it, my experience with those joints is the spring clip will be the cause of problems, and if its not working you'd know about it and it wouldn't be a slow leak. I've had one let go on a car, and it sounded like someone had taken a potshot at me (loud bang as the pipe came out of the joint and hit the underside of the bonnet). Slow leak more likely a trapped single o ring, or a pinhole leak, possibly under a clip so its only a very slight leak and difficult to find as a result.

We had to cut away some of the plastic on mine under the headlight to access the joint. The clip is around 2-3 inches back from the joint towards the cabin.
7657-07657-1

Offline brianh

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Re: Air-conditioning Suspect Gas leak
« Reply #11 on: July 12, 2021, 08:39:01 PM »
Yes. You use the tool like this
https://www.zoro.co.uk/shop/power-tools/heating-and-ventilation-spares-and-accessories/air-conditioning-spring-lock-coupling-tool-set-4pc/p/ZT1232130P?utm_source=google&utm_campaign=pla%2B%7C%2BPower%20Tools&utm_term=ZT1232130P&utm_medium=pla_css_3&targetid=aud-899587815027:pla-981979645644&loc_physical_ms=1006933&dev=c&gclid=Cj0KCQjw0K-HBhDDARIsAFJ6UGjEG7lIKhANujddB_YraxnidLvVz8TP-mwFIpDD6OB92qkcp3_33XkaAq8iEALw_wcB

You put the appropiate size round the pipe where the side with the spring is (theres a round spring inside that collar bit) the tool pushes the spring out of the way, you can then remove the pipe (its likely to be tight though!)

You should be able to find them elsewhere, probabbly at a better price, but you get the idea
Theres a bit of a knack to doing it, but you will figure it out. More important is to make sure the spring goes back in correctly afterwards (use a mirror to check its seated down properly). Spring can be replaced with the pipe out if needed (sometimes they go corroded and fall apart)
« Last Edit: July 12, 2021, 08:40:45 PM by brianh »

 

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