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Need to replace Corvette compressor... Advice pls.

LoJo on Sun July 18, 2010 2:15 PM User is offline

Year: 1993
Make: Corvette
Model: LT1

My compressor needs replacing and my local (Spanish) garages do not want to work on a Corvette, so I have to do it myself. Could anyone please clarify some things that I am unsure about:-

First, I have read on the forum about measuring the remaining oil as it is drained from various components. I admit my own lack of knowledge and confusion, but I don’t quite understand…

1.Does the oil that was originally added to the system not mix with the refrigerant and therefore gets sucked out of the components when the system is purged?.
2.Similarly, as I have had a leak (compressor shaft seal), wouldn’t some of oil have been lost, making any ‘drained measurements’ inaccurate?.
3.If I can’t measure the drained oil, is there a way I can calculate, or find from manufacturers specs, how much oil needs adding to the components?

Thanks for any advice.

bohica2xo on Sun July 18, 2010 3:57 PM User is offline

Draining a component and measuring the oil is a guess, and nothing more.

The best thing to do is flush the system to dry, and add back the total oil charge recommended for the vehicle. If you are replacing a compressor because of a failure, flushing is essential to remove the debris from the failed compressor.

Personally I flush any system I replace a component in. It is the only way to accurately know the oil charge in the system.


"Among the many misdeeds of the British rule in India, history will look upon the act of depriving a whole nation of arms, as the blackest."
~ Mahatma Gandhi, Gandhi, An Autobiography, M. K. Gandhi, page 446.

LoJo on Mon July 19, 2010 5:01 AM User is offline

Thanks bohica2xo,

That sounds very logical.

I had planned on removing the condenser and flushing that as a separate unit and also flushing the evaporator and lines in situ… can I do it (effectively) like that?. I’m also replacing the accumulator and orifice tube as I’m forced by local legislation (and non availability of R12) to convert to 134a. Or should I flush the system as a whole after all the new components are fitted?

All I can find in the official Corvette Service Manual is a two line mention of capacities, it say’s… Refrigerant Charge 2 ¼ lbs and Oil Charge 8 oz . Does that sound like logical ‘new system’ capacities and if so do I need to disperse that 8 oz amongst the various components or does it all go in the compressor?

Sorry to ask the same question again, but I’m interested/curious and not AC savvy and I would like to understand… does the oil eventually mix with the refrigerant and disperse evenly around the entire system or does it remain in the compressor and other components it is added to?

Thanks again.

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