2011 Honda Element vs. flying chunk of metal..

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kenaiinaugust
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2011 Honda Element vs. flying chunk of metal..

Post by kenaiinaugust »

Ok, let me start by saying I’m a Nate certified HVAC technician by trade. However; I’ve tried to steer clear and ignorant of automotive A/C repair.. lol

So I understand the principles of refrigeration cycles and such, I’m just not privy to the particulars of automotive.

So today some jerk didn’t secure their load and a giant chunk of metal smashed through my bumper and sliced through a line and dinged my condenser.

I’ve identified the line that got sliced but I’m not sure if the condenser is screwed.

After looking at part diagrams it looks like the pipe connects to the condenser using quite a few pieces such as a flange bolt and O-rings, etc. Is it safe to assume I should replace all of that or can the bolt reused?

Are there any extra precautions I should take since the line was severed?


Thanks!
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JohnHere
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Re: 2011 Honda Element vs. flying chunk of metal..

Post by JohnHere »

While you're waiting for the parts to arrive, be sure to cap or otherwise seal the sliced line ends to minimize the entrance of dirt, air, and moisture.

To be on the safe side, I would replace the condenser, the R/D, and of course the severed line, its attaching bolt, and any o-rings that are disturbed. Use a little Nylog Blue on each joint and o-ring to ensure a leak-free seal.

I would also add about 1-1/2 ounces of PAG-46 to the new R/D to replace any oil that might have been lost when the refrigerant discharged. Then evacuate the system for a couple hours and recharge it to the specs on the under-hood decal.
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kenaiinaugust
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Re: 2011 Honda Element vs. flying chunk of metal..

Post by kenaiinaugust »

Thnx for the speedy reply!

So should I be replacing BOTH of the flange bolts that hold lines onto the condenser or only the line that was severed?

Honda doesn’t list anything specifically as a R/D.
Am I correct in assuming what they call the “filter sub assembly” would be both the receiver and drier? It looks to be mounted off the side of the condenser.

Any ideas on how best to seal the pipe? It’s pinched shut because a metal support pinched it in half.

In your experiences Are aftermarket parts decent enough to try? 280$ For oem is a tough pill to swallow right now.

After finding nylog, I don’t know how I did anything hvac before it. Stuffs amazing.

JohnHere wrote: Wed Oct 12, 2022 6:33 pm While you're waiting for the parts to arrive, be sure to cap or otherwise seal the sliced line ends to minimize the entrance of dirt, air, and moisture.

To be on the safe side, I would replace the condenser, the R/D, and of course the severed line, its attaching bolt, and any o-rings that are disturbed. Use a little Nylog Blue on each joint and o-ring to ensure a leak-free seal.

I would also add about 1-1/2 ounces of PAG-46 to the R/D to replace any oil that might have been lost when the refrigerant discharged. Then evacuate the system for a couple hours and recharge it to the specs on the under-hood decal.
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JohnHere
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Re: 2011 Honda Element vs. flying chunk of metal..

Post by JohnHere »

kenaiinaugust wrote: Wed Oct 12, 2022 7:14 pm So should I be replacing BOTH of the flange bolts that hold lines onto the condenser or only the line that was severed?
Take a close look at the bolts and replace them if there's evidence of bending, damaged threads, etc. If there's no such damage, it's okay to re-use them.
kenaiinaugust wrote: Wed Oct 12, 2022 7:14 pm Honda doesn’t list anything specifically as a R/D.
Am I correct in assuming what they call the “filter sub assembly” would be both the receiver and drier? It looks to be mounted off the side of the condenser.
Yes, you are correct in that the R/D is integral with the condenser for this vehicle. If you purchase the condenser, it will come with a new desiccant bag already installed and sealed inside the cylinder, and the condenser inlet and outlet flanges should be factory sealed as well.
kenaiinaugust wrote: Wed Oct 12, 2022 7:14 pm Any ideas on how best to seal the pipe? It’s pinched shut because a metal support pinched it in half.
Temporarily sealing the ends of the tube will do. Gorilla Tape is good for that purpose, or even plastic caps if you can get them on there. Clean off any oil on the tubes with something like lacquer thinner and the tape will stick pretty well.
kenaiinaugust wrote: Wed Oct 12, 2022 7:14 pm In your experiences Are aftermarket parts decent enough to try? 280$ For oem is a tough pill to swallow right now.
Contact this site's sponsor, Tim, at ACKits.com, for the best prices on high-quality parts.
kenaiinaugust wrote: Wed Oct 12, 2022 7:14 pm After finding nylog, I don’t know how I did anything hvac before it. Stuffs amazing.
It's basically just thick, sticky refrigerant oil, but it certainly seals very well. In this instance, use Nylog Blue, which is compatible with R-134a.

I didn't mention this before: Unlike a residential A/C system, charging a Mobile Vehicle Air Conditioning (MVAC) system is done by weight, not by subcooling and superheat. So you'll need an accurate refrigerant scale (or postal scale in a pinch) to weigh-in the R-134a, as well as a good R-134a Manifold Gauge Set to monitor the pressures, and a thermometer (I prefer digital) to check the center vent temperature.

The specs that I have for your car call for 19.0 ounces net weight of R-134a and 4.0 fluid ounces of PAG-46. If the under-hood decal says differently, the decal takes precedence.
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kenaiinaugust
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Re: 2011 Honda Element vs. flying chunk of metal..

Post by kenaiinaugust »

I just emailed that site for a request for parts and pricing. I couldn’t find a way to DM on this forum.

I’ll try my best to seal them up, the problem is having to drop the bumper cover just to get to the pipes then put it all back together. I already know it’s gonna be a nightmare because this car was a rebuild and the seam along the quarter panel never lined up quite right.

Is there a relay that I can remove to prevent the comp. Clutch from engaging? Heating is typically an entirely different system, right?

What type of delta should I be looking for? Am I using outside ambient or the return temp under the dash?

I’m used to weighing in a charge. I work on everything from heat recovery VRF systems and chillers to kitchen refrigeration and WSHP’s.

I figured sh and sc wouldn’t quite apply directly. Lol
Btw, you nailed the specs.

Thank you so much, you’ve been a huge help so far.
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Re: 2011 Honda Element vs. flying chunk of metal..

Post by tbirdtbird »

OK, so we are agreed you will weigh in the charge for best results.
On a day with approx 85° ambient, you will want the lo side to be about 30-35. This number varies little with the ambient.
The high side s/b about 2.2x ambient plus 20% or even as high as 2.5x ambient plus 20%.
The condenser s/b able to give you a 25-30° differential (30 is better), just as resi condensing units provide a 30F differential. The heat must be removed.
You are aiming for about 45F at the vents. If you can achive that, you have done your job.

Charging s/b done as stated at a decent ambient such as 85F. An ambient less than that will give deceiving results and often lead to an overcharge.
For the charging/testing, the AC should be on max cool, max fan, doors open , RPM at 1500-1800, ie full load test

Resi is waaay easier than mobile
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JohnHere
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Re: 2011 Honda Element vs. flying chunk of metal..

Post by JohnHere »

kenaiinaugust wrote: Thu Oct 13, 2022 10:24 am I’ll try my best to seal them up, the problem is having to drop the bumper cover just to get to the pipes then put it all back together. I already know it’s gonna be a nightmare because this car was a rebuild and the seam along the quarter panel never lined up quite right.
Most people think that working on MVAC will be easy and straightforward, but usually it isn't. Maybe you can access the lines from underneath to avoid having to remove the bumper cover.
kenaiinaugust wrote: Thu Oct 13, 2022 10:24 am Is there a relay that I can remove to prevent the comp. Clutch from engaging? Heating is typically an entirely different system, right?
I'm not sure about your car, but usually there is a fuse box under the hood on the driver's side that contains several relays and fuses. If so, pop the lid off and see what you can find. Look for a map of the different relays under the lid. The A/C clutch relay might be labeled "MAG CLT" or something similar. The relays have prongs on the bottom that facilitate pulling them straight up and out. You could also unplug the electrical lead at the clutch and secure it somehow to prevent it from flopping around. The clutch and compressor won't engage anyway if there's no longer any refrigerant in the system.
The heating system has a separate core that circulates hot water from the engine. But the air plenum under the dash that houses both the heater core and evaporator typically has one or more blend doors that mix heated and cooled air to achieve the cabin temperature desired and to direct the air where needed (to the defroster ducts, for instance). The blend doors can be controlled by mechanical cables, vacuum motors, or electronically. I'm not sure what your vehicle has.
kenaiinaugust wrote: Thu Oct 13, 2022 10:24 am What type of delta should I be looking for? Am I using outside ambient or the return temp under the dash?
Once the system is back up and running properly, I like to see a temperature at the center vents in the low 40°F range under test conditions although that can vary depending on environmental factors. The ambient temperature is normally measured right in front of the grille, not what the weather service says.
kenaiinaugust wrote: Thu Oct 13, 2022 10:24 am I’m used to weighing in a charge. I work on everything from heat recovery VRF systems and chillers to kitchen refrigeration and WSHP’s. I figured sh and sc wouldn’t quite apply directly. Lol
Great! Just figured I'd mention weighing-in the charge on the outside chance that you might not know about it :D
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