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r134a availability

billrbg on Mon May 16, 2011 5:42 PM User is offline

Year: 1997
Make: Chevrolet
Model: 1500 Express
Engine Size: 5.7L
Refrigerant Type: R134a
Country of Origin: United States

I'm in California and went looking for small (12 oz) cans of R134a today; no joy. Has that been replaced now with another fluid, and is that new fluid a true "drop-in"? Does anyone know if 134, or its replacement, are still available over-the-counter in California? No, I don't have an A/C license...

TRB on Mon May 16, 2011 6:25 PM User is offlineView users profile

30 pounders are the future from what I hear. No clue as to what someone could have on the shelf. But as far as I know there is no direct replacement for R134a at this time.


When considering your next auto A/C purchase, please consider the site that supports you:

billrbg on Mon May 16, 2011 8:08 PM User is offline

The thread at the top of this forum ("cost of R134a") there is talk about the "other stuff"; that, and reference to R134a now only being available in 30#, maybe even just 10 Kg, is what made me think there was a replacement. As much hassle as A/C is I'm ready to do without it, but my wife would still like me to try...

HECAT on Tue May 17, 2011 7:25 AM User is offline

Keep looking; cans of R134a should still be available in CA. Carb has adopted a new can (with a valve) and a deposit and return program. I am sure not all will want to invest and participate in the new program of accountability and responsibility; so some familiar sources may no longer carry it.

The replacement that is being spoken about is the next generation of refrigerant (R1234yf) coming out in new cars within the next few years. Not a drop in replacement.


HECAT: You support the Forum when you consider for your a/c parts.


billrbg on Tue May 17, 2011 2:12 PM User is offline

Cancel the R134a panic, I got a 30# tank today ($10/#).

JJM on Sat May 21, 2011 12:33 AM User is offline

Here we go again with this BS! They weren't happy with banning R-12 over irrational fears that it was destroying the ozone layer, and now R-134a is next refrigerant that's on the chopping block. I though R-134a was supposed to be "environmentally friendly" as it was widely touted over that evil R-12 refrigerant. So what happened? The experts were wrong (again) and R-134a isn't really that environmentally friendly after all? Were they lying to us???

Of course, a particular items only becomes bad for the environment once it's widely accepted by the masses, and the same thing too will happen with these stupid hybrids and compact florescent bulbs... once enough people are using them, the despicable diseased brained imbeciles will manufacture some new type of environmental apocalypse, as I noted in my post below from a decade ago. It's gotten pretty predictable, it's just too bad the masses are more concerned with Justin Bieber, American Idol and the latest smartphones... basically a national of ignorant jackasses.

By the way, it's been two decades since R-12 was banned and the ozone hole over Antarctica is still there. Not only that, it was recently reported that a new ozone hole had almost opened over the Arctic, with more than 40% of the ozone over the region being destroyed. How can this be with CFC's having been long banned???

I too heard about this R-1234yf and I'm surprised there hasn't been a lot of chatter on the board about this. When do we say enough is enough, and leave us alone already???


Circa 2000:

"The great mass of people … will more easily fall victim to a big lie than to a small one."
- Mein Kampf (1925) by Adolph Hitler.

The CFC scare is a big lie (R-12 contains CFC’s), which dates back to 1970, when scientists discovered that CFC’s might harm the ozone layer. Then, in 1974 chemists at the University of California at Irvine "discovered" the ozone-depleting effects of CFC’s. The CFC scare gained momentum in 1985 when British scientists first discovered the ozone hole over Antarctica.

There is no credible scientific evidence, or even theory, documenting when hole in the ozone layer over Antarctica actually appeared. For all we know, the ozone hole could have been there for thousands of years, long before CFC’s began widespread use in the 1930’s and thereon. Since ozone is naturally produced by the sun, the ozone hole over Antarctica is more likely the result of the lack of sunlight occurring each year over this region as the Earth tilts on its axis. This fact is ignored, and the CFC’s in your hair spray and air conditioner are blamed instead.

I dare any credible scientist to answer the following question in the affirmative: If we were to put CFC production into overdrive for the next five years, and then release ALL the CFC’s into atmosphere en masse, would we be able to destroy the ozone layer?

Chlorine, the culpable element of R-12, destroys ozone molecules via a catalytic reaction (it is not consumed as it destroys the ozone). But ozone is produced by the sun at a rate of several tons per second, via UV radiation from the sun striking and dividing the oxygen (O2) molecule, and the two separate reactive oxygen atoms quickly combining with other oxygen molecules to form ozone (O3). As long as the sun puts out UV radiation at the right wavelength and there is sufficient oxygen the stratosphere, we need not worry about the ozone layer.

Ask yourself this question, if R-12 were such a voracious eater of ozone, why are so many ozone advisories issued throughout the summer?

Talk about government hypocrisy, though: a 1991 estimation from NASA showed that each shuttle launch released 75 tons (yes, tons) of chlorine into the atmosphere. This notwithstanding, the chlorine (hydrochloric acid) that spewed out in the last eruption of Mount Pinatubo was 500 times larger than the annual production of CFCs in the entire world. What about the chlorine (sodium chloride) from the evaporation of sea water loaded with salt? And the EPA is worried about the couple of pounds of Freon in your air conditioner.

Every air conditioning technician knows R-12 is heavier than air, which is why leak detection equipment is utilized BELOW the source of the leak. Honestly, does it seem plausible that R-12, being 4 to 8 times heavier than air, travels 12 to 30 miles up into the atmosphere, supposedly by "polar winds", and then remains there to attack the ozone layer? Perhaps my TIF XP1 Halogen Hawk is just plain lying to me.

The CFC ban has likely cost, We The People, untold millions in retrofitting air conditioning and refrigeration systems to the more "environmentally friendly refrigerants, most of which are not as efficient as CFC based refrigerants. R-134a is 20% less efficient than R-12; R-134a has a Latent Heat of Vaporization (the amount of energy required to change state from vapor to a liquid) of 47.19 (Kcal/Kg @ 0o C) versus 36.43 (Kcal/Kg @ 0o C) for R-12. And since there is no "energy fairy", we must therefore burn 20% more fossil fuels in order to obtain the same level of cooling.

Perhaps most lamentable is the impact the CFC hoax has had upon the poor and elderly. Nearly all automotive air conditioning systems designed before 1994 utilize R-12. Prior to the ban, R-12 could be purchased by anyone at an auto parts or hardware store for about a $1 or $2 a pound (can). Now you need an EPA license, and it costs about $20 to $25 a pound wholesale, with some shops charging as much as $80 pound retail (some older vehicles require as much as four pounds). For the most part, air conditioning service must now performed by a professional with expensive refrigerant recovery equipment, which most poor and elderly on limited or fixed incomes cannot afford. When the air conditioning systems of older vehicles fail as a result of a minor leak, the choice is often retrofit to R-134a at a cost of up to $1,500 on some vehicles, do without air conditioning, or buy a new car – none of which are viable options. This is not right.

To make matters worse, the substitute for R-12 is R-134A, and while more ozone friendly, R-134a contributes to "greenhouse gases" hence contributing to "global warming" – oh no! Not to worry, it too is already slated to be banned, albeit in 2030. Then again, R-12 was scheduled to be banned at the end of 2000, but then Senator Al Gore, consumed by illogical and irrational environmental fears, managed to add a provision in an unrelated bill to accelerate the ban 5 years sooner to the end of 1995 (and still the majority of uninitiated Americans voted for him). It’s likely that almost every conceivable refrigerant will cause some kind of environmental malady in the eyes of those who are wholly against American progress and improved living standards.

Finally, as a matter of national interest, we simply cannot allow unelected socialist global organizations like the United Nations jeopardize our sovereignty, liberty and prosperity.

NickD on Sat May 21, 2011 11:50 AM User is offline

Been a long while, Joe, how is the wife and baby? LOL, won't ask about the Cadillac.

EPA does have its limits on jurisdiction, as you pointed out, can't touch mother nature, can also add the billions of tons of methane the earth releases into the atmosphere. Can't touch NASA, Area 51, nor the military with nuclear bombs, depleted uranium shells, and biological warfare. Won't touch the EPA breaking eleven ethanol plants that are harming many, governor says, hands off. Nor the wide open spreading of corporate liquid manure putting tons of hydrochloric and sulfuric acid into the air.

Also hands off on the corporations using substandard components in MVAC systems.

But they can pick on a can of R-134a or R-12, so I suppose we should back off and let them have their fun.

Already banned HC's as refrigerants, couldn't pick on the environment so switched over to its safety aspects. "Using the new HFO-1234yf will significantly increase the risk of fire" as it contains HC's, both still obtained EPA SNAP approval. Talk about GM using it in 2013 vehicles. Screw logic and science, just do what you are told!

Seems like Gore crawled under a rock someplace. Not much was made out of his billion scam with CO2 global warming, but much was made about him sticking his thingy in the wrong illicit hole.

Cussboy on Sun May 22, 2011 7:27 AM User is offline

EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) MAKES us submit our pesticide EPA registration documents printed single-sided, requiring twice as much paper, real environmental.

My own opinion as a scientist is that government botched the whole R-12 thing, just needed to restrict its purchase to real certified shops, and ban adding to leaky systems. That would have eliminated the "home guy" adding a can of 99 cent R-12 every week instead of having such leak fixed.

Sure excess CO2 from fossil fuels is bad too, but dwarfed by the CO2 that comes from natural sources like volcano eruptions each year.

NickD on Sun May 22, 2011 9:18 AM User is offline

That would have eliminated the "home guy" adding a can of 99 cent R-12 every week instead of having such leak fixed.

What really works is increasing that 99 cents to 99 dollars.

Edited: Sun May 22, 2011 at 9:20 AM by NickD

JJM on Mon May 23, 2011 12:48 AM User is offline

Hi Nick,

Wife just sprained her ankle the other day, in a lot of pain, but the baby - actually a toddler I guess now at 19 months - is doing awesome! Thanks! He's such a happy little boy; takes after his mother in that respect. I just hope he stays that way, and doesn't become curmudgeon like his dad.

The kid is a beast though, moving large pieces of furniture around the house. I could be in the kitchen having dinner with my wife, and all of a sudden we'll see a coffee table cruising by us. The other day he totally trashed his room - as he often does and in a way where we have no idea he's doing it - and looking all innocent. I wish I could post the pic, but since I switched to FiOS, I seem to have lost my hosting. That and I don't know what FTP program to use now with Windows 7... though really I should get with it since I've running a Dell PowerEdge with Windows Server 2008 R2 Enterprise, and should know be able to host on my own. And I want to show off too, as you did with that adorable granddaughter of yours.

Believe it or not, the Caddy has been virtually trouble free since the factory warranty ran out... probably because I changed jobs and my commute is now only 1.8 miles so how much can go wrong now, LOL. The only problem do I have is the heated steering wheel turns off after it warms up - to much resistance in the wheel which causes the module to shut down. The whole steering wheel needs to be replaced, and just haven't had the time, too much work on this 59 year old house of mine. That and my wife's Camry has been requiring a lot of attention - the opposite of what you'd expect. I'm also doing a lot of work on the old Olds 98 Regency, so I can at least move it in and out of the garage for projects.

I'm 45 now and wonder, assuming I have a normal lifespan, I wonder how many more refrigerant changes in the name of saving the planet I'm going to see in my lifetime? I also have to wonder if there's any hope that I'll life to see the day where it's discovered that this has all been a hoax. I guess it might be worth a chuckle in my old age when everyone is panicking over the dangers of compact flourescent bulbs, the batteries in hybrids, the dangers R-XXX...

One thing I do know is my little boy is never going to know the joys of freedom like I did growing up. He'll never be able to sit in daddy's lap and steer the car. I'll never be able to let him drive at 12 or 13 without being arrested for child endangerment. Heck, he won't even be able to ride on see-saw, you see the city thinks they're too dangerous and took them out... surprised they still have a swing set (for now). I don't think I'll be able to teach my son not to smoke the same way my dad did - by letting me choke on a cigaratte at 7 years old, after which I never had a desire to smoke, even in high school with all the peer pressure of friends. He probably won't be able to run out of the house and meet up with his friends, because now "play dates" have to be arranged by parents. All the fun of being a kid seems to have been largely taken away.


NickD on Mon May 23, 2011 1:58 PM User is offline

Took my Supra out of storage, in the process of changing the timing belt now, AC still works. But it occurred to me, I was only 50 years old when I purchased this car. I thought this car would be worth a fortune today, it isn't, can't even buy a piece of crap for what the book says its worth, so might as well enjoy it. House doubled in price due to inflation, and so has the property taxes, but its also starting to fall apart. My doctor tells me I have another good twenty years left, but at this rate, no way could I live here. I do have a pup tent.

Also when I purchased this car, no such thing as the EPA getting involved with AC, what's next with these guys? Could be something to do with EMI radiation where you have to be certified to buy and change spark plug wires. Really don't expect the IC engine to change in the next twenty years.

You can upload an image to Tim's site, look at that upload image box, even Windows 7 shows that. Looking at it now.

Listened to part of the presidents speech last week when driving. Could only take so much, then switched to my MP3 player. Doesn't this guy know he was only elected to be president of the USA, who made him president of the world? He is certainly interested in fighting for freedom and democracy, feel very strong about giving my life to fight for that freedom here. But like a bunch of other guys in my boat, was forced to fight for freedom for countries that didn't even want it. That hasn't changed.

JJM on Tue May 24, 2011 12:29 AM User is offline

Aside from his economic policies, worst part is so many Americans are suffering right now in the aftermath of the tornadoes and flooding, especially with the tornadoes in MO this past Sunday, and this guy is off in Ireland.

Here he was criticizing Bush as a war monger, and not only has this guy not gotten us out of Iraq as he promised and close Guantanamo Bay, he's escalated the war in Afghanistan, invaded Libya, and is regularly bombing Pakistan. At least Bush got Congressional approval and went to the UN before engaging us in conflict. Yet hardly any anti-war protests anymore. Ahhhhh, don't even get me started... let's talk about the little ones!!! They don't have any idea about any of this, and that's a good thing!


NickD on Tue May 24, 2011 6:55 AM User is offline

La Crosse, WI was hit hard by a tornado last Sunday, some touched down in a county north of us, but we barely got a wind. New neighbors, both in the national guard, both from New Orleans suffered from Katrina, but both were sent to Iraq. The current idea of a democracy in the middle east, is to have a central government with many highly trained troops to put down any rebels. Supposingly the government is elected by the people. Experts state these democracies are doomed for failure, but actually it sounds like they are modeling these democracies after us, more like dictatorships then democracies.

I contacted my representatives many times on EPA issues, they aren't representatives, they have to follow their party rules, if they don't, won't be reelected. They don't even know what these agencies are doing that they created in the last 50 years with full authoritative power. Like over 1,500 of them. I never even heard of the USCIS until I met my wife, was treated like a criminal with these people, but had to be tactful and nice, being nice almost killed me.

One commonality of these agencies, they don't have to prove they are doing any good. The individuals you meet either are not required or simply do not know their own regulations. You never want to use a complicated chemical term like H2O to an EPA agent. Most I met had degrees in literature or basket weaving. Darn EPA can't even write their own 609 certification test, found that alarming. Heads of these agencies are those that helped the president get elected.

EPA comes out and states F-134a is environmentally friendly, but where is the test data? Any private corporation can't do that, would be murdered with liability suits. Well maybe not, they already have the backing of the EPA, can't fight that in court.

I fear for the life of my granddaughter, actually all twelve of my grandkids. Do feel my granddaughter takes after her grandpa, we have a lot more fun taking her toys apart, learning what makes them tick and putting them back together again. A lot more fun for us than playing with them.

As a kid, was allowed to build my own boat and use it, put a gasoline engine on a bike and use that, did a lot of engine swapping, all that is illegal today. You are talking about your son and driving. Major problem I had with my three youngest when finally teaching them how to drive, was staying awake when they got in the car. From day one, had to be tied up in the car. To kill the pure boredom of that, would instantly fall asleep. My granddaughter is the same way, hardly drive a block, and she's asleep. But its for her safety.

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