Question about 1996 Ford Thunderbird LX

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Charging air conditioner - 1996 Ford Thunderbird LX

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There is a lot to doing the job correctly, but sometimes with luck you can get acceptable results with minimum expense and effort. It all depends on how much Freon is left in the system.
The repair for a system with remaining Freon in it is a different repair job from a system that is empty. The Freon pressure keeps worse things from happening. You will find a fitting to add Freon on the accumulator(black oblong tank) or on a line close to that part. With the engine running and A/C engaged; you need to check the Freon pressure with a gauge.
If the A/C compressor is not kicking in, the connector on the low pressure switch needs to be disconnected and jumped with a looped wire. Add Freon if you have low pressure. Note the pressure because the low pressure switch has a rated working pressure and weak pressure switches can cut out early.
Fill the Freon to a moderate working level. You want the A/C to stay working longer which it will do when it is charged between the high and low pressure limits.
But if you find that there is zero pressure in the system, at a minimum you need to rent or borrow a Vacuum pump and evacuate the system. Then add Freon with a sealer and a small oil charge. Operate the system and drive 20 minutes minimum to circulate the sealant. Check pressure after 24 hours and top off the Freon charge.
If the leak did not seal, you will need professional help and tools to replace the leaking part. There are leak detectors, but some of the fittings require special tools to change.

Posted on Jul 17, 2013

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