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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm waiting to collect an 87 305. The car is original as far as I can tell and had been barn-stored in Texas for several years prior to coming to the UK.

I'm assuming that

a) the Aircon will be in need of regas/service
b) it'll be an original R12 system.

I emailed an AC company to ask about conversion, changing lines/compressor etc and for a worst case scenario quote.

They responded with the following:


you just need this kit to convert it R12 to R134a Retrofit Conversion Kit.



Now, to my mind that's far too simple and good to be true. Very cheap and straightforward.

Anyone with more technical knowledge than me able to confirm my doubts?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks, I had assumed the o rings would need to be changed. Are these vehicle specific, or fairly universal? There aren't many options for Elky parts in the UK, but I'd hope that o rings would be fairly universal subject to the right diameter and thickness
 

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You can convert it with just the kit you showed but you’ll likely be adding refrigerant every year (no big deal, a lot of us do that). If you chose to change the seals you should be able to get most of them locally. The compressor’s seals may be harder, but a kit for a whole car will fit in an envelope. If a vendor won’t mail them a member should be able to.
Most shops here would want to know if the system has been open to atmosphere for any length of time and, if so, will want you to replace the reciever/dryer.
Another concern is the condenser; the type your car has works better with R12 than R134. The difference in efficiency may not be noticeable with a small cabin and moderate air temps but in some parts of the US it is. (Mine still has its original and it’s fine).
Lastly, you may want a different pressure switch that’s specific to R134 if your system cycles too much after the conversion.
Patrick
 

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Every time I converted from R12 to R134 it always went like Pat said. I would buy a case of R134 and it would last me about 5 years.. It always worked though and the cars inside temperature was always cool and dry..
 

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The molecules in the R134 refrigerant are smaller than the R12 molecules and will leak more easily through the walls of an R12 hose.

It us suggested that R134 "barrier hoses" be used with this type of refrigerant.

Rick

Sent from my SM-G965U using Tapatalk
 

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I'm waiting to collect an 87 305. The car is original as far as I can tell and had been barn-stored in Texas for several years prior to coming to the UK.

I'm assuming that

a) the Aircon will be in need of regas/service
b) it'll be an original R12 system.

I emailed an AC company to ask about conversion, changing lines/compressor etc and for a worst case scenario quote.

They responded with the following:


you just need this kit to convert it R12 to R134a Retrofit Conversion Kit.



Now, to my mind that's far too simple and good to be true. Very cheap and straightforward.

Anyone with more technical knowledge than me able to confirm my doubts?
I did a conversion on a 93 S-10 Blazer, it cooled, that's about the best I can say. Drove it one afternoon here in Texas about an hour, at the end of the hour I started feeling cool enough to move the blower off of high down a notch. Don't take me wrong, rolling down the windows would have been less comfortable but was at the point of debate. One other thing, the Blazer had much more glass and interior so in an 87 ElCo, should at least be better than my Blazer was! Good luck!

Joe
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for the info.

When I eventually get hold of the car I'll run it in to a shop and see what they say re: seals. If need be I'll order a kit from the US, but I'm hopeful I'll be able to source something locally. It doesn't get all that hot here as a rule, so it's not quite such a priority, I'd just rather have it than not.
 

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In the UK, your AC will probably be useful for removing condensation inside the vehicle, and is worth fixing. The o-ring seals should be easy to replace- every car uses them, and they come is packs with multiple sizes. The Compressor seals are unique to the compressor, and may require sourcing in USA, but again could be easily mailed. An in-operating compressor can also experience failure at the shaft seals from lack of lubrication, and that will require either a costly repair or compressor replacement.

Switching from R12 to R134a is a little tricky, as the oils are not compatible. Any remaining Mineral oil in the system will pool and not circulate, and can contaminate the accumulator ( definitely change the accumulator out on a swap). If you want more info, search Black Death and R134a. Use Ester oil for the conversion ( it is compatible with Mineral oil and R134a), and try and flush as much of the mineral oil out as possible (lines, evaporator). Remove the compressor and drain the oil from it. The condenser is harder to flush, but it can be done ( or for better performance, replace with a Parallel Flow condenser).

There are many tutorials on doing this swap. If it looks quick and easy, then don't believe it. It is a complicated system, and can easily be damaged , resulting in more expense at a later date. Done properly, you should have many years of service.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
In the UK, your AC will probably be useful for removing condensation inside the vehicle, and is worth fixing. The o-ring seals should be easy to replace- every car uses them, and they come is packs with multiple sizes. The Compressor seals are unique to the compressor, and may require sourcing in USA, but again could be easily mailed. An in-operating compressor can also experience failure at the shaft seals from lack of lubrication, and that will require either a costly repair or compressor replacement.

Switching from R12 to R134a is a little tricky, as the oils are not compatible. Any remaining Mineral oil in the system will pool and not circulate, and can contaminate the accumulator ( definitely change the accumulator out on a swap). If you want more info, search Black Death and R134a. Use Ester oil for the conversion ( it is compatible with Mineral oil and R134a), and try and flush as much of the mineral oil out as possible (lines, evaporator). Remove the compressor and drain the oil from it. The condenser is harder to flush, but it can be done ( or for better performance, replace with a Parallel Flow condenser).

There are many tutorials on doing this swap. If it looks quick and easy, then don't believe it. It is a complicated system, and can easily be damaged , resulting in more expense at a later date. Done properly, you should have many years of service.
Thank you for the detailed answer.

There is an air-conditioning specialist not too far from me, I think I will order the necessary compressor seals and specialist parts from the US, and have them overhaul it and do the necessary. I'm willing to try most things, but I'm pretty inexperienced and don't want to risk damaging something.
 
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