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heater core / AC evaporator replacement: how to release AC refrigerant?

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Old 10-03-2011, 09:15 PM
kbizzle kbizzle is offline
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Vehicle: 1995 Dodge RAM 1500 4x4
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Default heater core / AC evaporator replacement: how to release AC refrigerant?

for the 4 months i've owned my truck, i've noticed the passenger carpet has been a little damp. it smells a little funny but not really like antifreeze. the heater still blows heat but i know heater core leaks are pretty common in these trucks.

i'm considering tackling this myself so i've been searching the forum here and reading the excellent DIY in the FAQ section. i also found this very helpful video: http://youtu.be/kHKXSOEohG0

i'll also replace the AC evaporator core as well while i have the box pulled. i may replace the accumulator while i'm at it. the part of the step that i'm most worried about is releasing the refrigerant. i don't understand how to do this at all. i'm fine with taking it to my mechanic to have it charged later. any tips or tools that i need?

this sounds like a very tedious and PITA kind of project but it would be awfully expensive to have a mechanic do it. on that note, am i risking the engine by letting this go for a while? i don't appear to be losing any coolant, the a/c is working (i had it charged 4 mos ago), the heater is blowing hot air and the engine isn't overheating.

i've put extra silicone around the 3rd brake light. i also attempted to unclog the drain tube and put some silicone around the tube. my passenger side door seal is torn up so i haven't completely ruled out the possibility that water is seeping in from there.
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Old 10-03-2011, 09:17 PM
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Take the truck to your mechanic, and have him evacuate the system for you. Releasing the refrigerant into the atmosphere is a bad idea.
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Old 10-03-2011, 09:22 PM
kbizzle kbizzle is offline
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heyyou,

thanks for the quick reply! that's exactly what i was worried about. i assume there's no harm driving it after it's been evacuated as long as i leave the AC/heater off, right?
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:52 PM
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With the refrigerant out, the compressor should be locked out and not able to run, so no problem. (low press cut out)
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:52 PM
 
 
 
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