Help with new AC system 1984 El Camino

Friendly format provided to inquire about automotive a/c systems.
Archived Forum

Moderators: bohica2xo, Tim, JohnHere, Dougflas, HECAT

Posts: 8
Joined: Tue Apr 03, 2018 6:05 am

Help with new AC system 1984 El Camino

Postby Bailey28 » Tue Apr 03, 2018 6:32 am

Hey guys,
I've rebuilt my 84 El Camino and I have installed a brand new A/C system from store bought parts. New R4 compressor, new evaporator, new condenser, all new lines, new accumulator, etc.

I used a new white GM orifice tube.

I put 4 ounces of PAG 150 into the compressor, 1 ounce into the accumulator on the low pressure side, and 2 ounces into the condenser inlet. I turned the compressor hub at least 15 times to make sure oil wasn't built up in the compressor. It turned fairly easy with no noise or roughness.

I pulled a vacuum for 45 minutes, let it sit, pulled another 45 minutes then charged from a 12 ounce can into the system, engine still off. The system took 4 ounces of refrigerant r134a then stopped with both gauges reading 50 psi. I could not get any more refrigerant in than that, gas or liquid.

I started the car and heard a loud belt squeal as soon as I switched on the A/C control. The compressor clutch was staying engaged, but the way the compressor rotated was disturbing. Instead of running continuously, it was stopping several times a second. It was as if there was a great resistance to it turning which was making the belt jump and slide over the pulley. Even when it did turn, it only turned say between half and one revolution before it locked up and made the belt slip again.

The gauges were reading 70psi on the low and high side during this time. There is only 9 ounces of refrigerant in the system at this point.

I'm thinking there is a blockage. Perhaps much of the oil has made it's way up to the orifice tube in the liquid line and the compressor can't force the oil through it? The belt is new and has the proper tension on the pulley so it isn't a loose belt. For now I've stopped in fear that something is going very wrong.

Any tips would be great.
User avatar
Posts: 791
Joined: Wed May 11, 2016 4:12 pm
Location: Las Vegas, NV

Re: Help with new AC system 1984 El Camino

Postby bohica2xo » Mon Apr 09, 2018 11:26 am

What port did you charge the refrigerant through?

Did you charge as a liquid or a gas?

The oil charge will not block the orifice tube.

How does the compressor feel when you turn it by hand now?
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Jul 20, 2019 10:37 pm

Re: Help with new AC system 1984 El Camino

Postby Gremlinx » Sun Jul 21, 2019 12:49 pm

Im afraid its the compressor. Why i dont know since you did spin it. Is it a reman or chinese? is clutch charred from heat? Pull hoses on back and see if it will suck in a finger and hold the suction if so. If not, its bad sorry to say. I just put a reman on mine and i think its weak...not moving enuff gas and tepid duct temps. I can also hear a bit of rattling resonating in the accumulator. Does yours do this? Well, you probably better not run yours anymore as it may be spitting shards. Mine was so bad from the start that I had to put an old used freewheel bearing on it after just idling it...thats how bad parts are now. AND, the R-4 doesnt take well to a rebuilding. Damn theyre $$$

Return to “Automotive Air Conditioning Forum”