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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
My '81 305's A/C quit. It's an original CA car, brought to TX by second owner around 2014. I bought El Roy in 2/20. A/C has stopped working. The refrigerant fittings on the accumulator appear to be R134a and the compressor looks newer (I don't think that sticker would be in that good of shape after 41 years). I can't find an A/C decal under the hood. Is it safe to assume this A/C system has been converted from R12? Anything else I should be looking for to verify?

I've never worked on A/C systems before, but one video I watched indicated that you could tell visually when the compressor was on because of the face of the pully would be idle when off, and rotating when on. I don't see anything like that. Is there a visual indicator to know if the compressor is functioning, or could the refrigerant level be too low not allowing the compressor to turn on? I can't hear the compressor kick in and the idle doesn't change, either when turning on the A/C.

I'm leaning towards starting with simply adding refrigerant just to see if low refrigerant is the problem, and then monitor the pressure every month or so to see if I have any leaks. Is this an acceptable way to see if I have any system leaks, or should I vacuum the system first? Anything else I should be doing?

View attachment 147425 View attachment 147426
Thanks to everyone for sharing their knowledge. I have confirmed that the compressor does engage (jumped the pressure switch), and there appears to be some oil mist / dirt accumulation on the tubing behind the accumulator. I believe this is where the expansion tube / orifice is installed. Can anyone confirm?

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yes, what you have pictured high to low transition is where the Orifice tube is located. Looks to be leaking at that spot. If its dry you should replace the accumulator an vacuum test for leaks.
 
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