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2003 Xterra - compressor replacement questions

NickB on Tue May 08, 2012 5:32 PM User is offline

Year: 2003
Make: Nissan
Model: Xterra
Engine Size: 3.3
Refrigerant Type: R134a

I'm looking for a little guidance on replacing the compressor and looking for a leak.

My A/C has actually been working fine and blowing cold air, but the compressor clutch plate broke and was making a racket as it was dragging on the pulley when not engaged(one of the three springs broke). This happened a few years ago and I pulled the clutch plate/pulley and replaced it, but this time I can't remove it with the special clutch tool as it feels like it's welded on.

I'm wondering now if I might have actually had a leak all this time, as the low side line seems to have some dirt and yellow stuff around the crimped fitting. It seems that I now need to buy a new compressor with clutch and possibly one or more of the lines. I've read that the Xterra high side line has a habit of going bad as well. So I'm wondering if I buy a new compressor, drier and low side line, should I also bit the bullet and get the high side as well. The car is 10 years old with 160,000 miles.

Also, if I replace the compressor, two lines, and drier, how much oil should I be adding back to the system before I pull a vacuum and recharge?



Edited: Tue May 08, 2012 at 5:36 PM by NickB

TRB on Tue May 08, 2012 10:57 PM User is offlineView users profile

To be safe replace the lines. But it's a judgement call for the person working on the vehicle. As for how much oil. It's always a guess when you just swap parts out. Some say drain the compressor and drier. Add back that amount plus an extra ounce. I'm a proponent of flushing the system out correctly using Hecat's products and procedures. Then add back the OEM spec for the vehicle.


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Cussboy on Tue May 08, 2012 11:06 PM User is offline

You might be able to just get that low side line repaired, for less $$$$. I got my B2200 high side line fixed for $50 in town (a new hose barb was welded on, and then the hose cut 1 inch and re-crimped; 9 years later still OK). AMA does such repairs too, I believe.

I think I'd wait and only replace the high side line when/if it leaks.

NickB on Thu May 10, 2012 1:13 PM User is offline

That for the help. I took some pics of the lines, do the oily areas around the crimp connections indicate a leak?

NickB on Thu May 10, 2012 1:14 PM User is offline

I think the first one is the low side, second is the high, and not sure about the third.

Edited: Thu May 10, 2012 at 1:18 PM by NickB

Cussboy on Thu May 10, 2012 2:25 PM User is offline

Oily areas around crimp fittings do typically indicate a leak, did on mine.

A co-worker had a 1995 Caravan, and the hidden line for the rear which had three metal sections connected by two flexible hoses. And 3 of the 4 crimps were leaking.

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