How to Recharge the AC in Your Vehicle with Freon

The AC in your vehicle is important since it keeps you comfortable, especially in the hot summer months. If you don't have AC that functions properly, it can not only be uncomfortable to drive your vehicle, can it can even distract you from driving safely. The steering wheel may be too hot to hold onto, the seats can burn you, and more. If you let the AC run for a bit, you can avoid these issues. When your AC starts to give out on you, it is likely that it needs to be recharged, which in most cases you can do on your own. Here's how:

Check Refrigerant

Before you even begin the project of recharging the AC in your vehicle on your own, you have to be sure that your car uses the R134 refrigerant. You can check with your owner's manual to figure out what kind your vehicle uses. If your vehicle uses the older type of refrigerant, which is R12, then you will want to take your car into a repair shop to replace it with the new stuff, which is the best way to get your AC up and functioning properly again.

Purchase the Necessary Tools

The three things that you will need to ensure that you are able to recharge your AC system is freon, a pressure gauge, and a rubber hose. The pressure gauge is important because you want to keep track of how much refrigerant is going into the system and usually comes with the rubber hose that you need to attach it to. There are even kits that are available that provide further instruction on how to recharge your AC system if you need it. However, these can sometimes be more expensive than purchasing the freon and pressure gauge separately. 

Find Low-Pressure Port

The AC system of your vehicle has two sides, which would be the low-pressure port and the high-pressure port, which are located underneath the hood of your vehicle. The low-pressure port should be labeled with an L, while the high-pressure port is labeled with an H. The low-pressure port is where you want to attach the freon with the pressure gauge. However, before you attach it, be sure to clean it to avoid allowing any debris to get into the compressor, which can cause dysfunction.

Recharge with Freon

Now you want to attach the freon to the low-pressure port and attach the gauge to the top of the freon can. You can begin to charge the AC and you will want to stop once the gauge indicates that the AC system is the same temperature as the outside temperature. 

Knowing how to recharge your AC system can be really helpful, especially if you know you are going to be driving your vehicle a long distance in the summer time. However, if you need further help, it's best to contact an auto AC service professional.