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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

I have a 2008 Rav4 and 4 weeks ago my A/C unit stopped working so I made an appointment at the Dealer. They did an A/C diagnostic test and advised that it seems like my unit has a leak as the pressure was almost at 0 PSI. They refilled the system with refrigerant that has dye in it to detect a leak. I went back 2 weeks later and they told me I have a leak in my condenser which would be 1k to replace. I didn't proceed with that option at the time.

It's been 3 weeks since my system got refilled and my A/C is still blowing cold air. I have a co-worker that has the refill kit so I was going to try the AC seal refrigerant to see if I could seal the leak without replacing the condenser. When I tried to do it last night the pressure gauge showed that the low pressure line had 120 PSI which is overfilled according to the gauge.

I did some searching and it says the average low pressure line should be between 25 to 40 psi.

Any suggestions on what I should do? Seems like if there is a leak, that it's pretty small if the pressure in the line is still that high after 3 weeks. Also why would the dealer pressurize the line that high? to ensure the dye leaked out?

Thanks for your input.
 

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Did you have it running with the ac on max while you tested it? You will get a high reading like that on the low side if the compressor is not kicked on.

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The pressure with the compressor disengaged is immaterial. You need to have the AC system operating THEN read the pressure.


As for the sealer, I do not recommend it. I've seen cross-section cutaways of new condensers, and the holes are the size of a human hair. You could easily cause more problems with stop leak than you have now. The compressor is designed to pump vapor and liquid, not sealant.


If there is a guarantee on the sealer, it is only for the cost of the product.


The high side pressure is a vital piece of information when diagnosing an AC issue. Not all AC faults are due to low system charge. These compressors are notorious for having bad flow sensors. My research shows these sensors are not available separately, meaning the compressor must be replaced as an assembly.


I would take it to an AC shop or an independent shop that advertises AC as a specialty.


At the shop where I work, I'm guessing the bill would be closer to $700-$800


When a system develops a leak, refrigerant AND oil leak out. When you recharge, no oil is added, so the system is low on lubricant that can cause compressor lockup. I recommend adding an ounce of oil to the system when it is being recharged. Chances are the dealer put in a dye/oil mixture if they work like most shops.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for that information. I did test it without having the compressor running so i'll have to try it again with it on.

I'll also see if I can find a specialized A/C shop in my area to get a quote for a condenser install.

I have noticed that the coldness is starting to drop again....
 
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