A/C Conversions - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old Apr 29th, 01, 04:08 AM Thread Starter
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77 Type LT ... My A/C R12 system needs recharging ... I see a lot of ads these days about converting to the R134... WIll anyone having some experience in this area please share their experience ...good or bad... I've have spoken to 2 shops .. 1 was for conversion...the other was against it ... I am told that the cooling effiency suffers and, of course there may be additional cost. My wife is the original owner of the car, so it is a keeper. I am mainly interested in a quality repair. I'll pay the higher cost for R12 is that is going to give me the most satisfaction. Comments please??
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old Apr 29th, 01, 05:18 AM
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I have never had a conversion done...but I think it can be very expensive! They may have to change out some elements of the compressor (in other words rebuild) in addition to possibly new lines and fittings etc.

Your best bet, in my book, is to bite the bullet and spend the extra $ on R-12. You will be much happier with the cooling performance in the end (R134 can take forever to cool on really hot days) and it should be less expensive than converting.

One note: the guys at Car Craft have filled some older R-12 systems with R-134 (no mods!) and they work just fine (but for how long?)!

I still say go for R-12 (safe for your parts, works great)!

See my '68 RS/ZZ4 at http://www.100megsfree.com/choptop/camaro.html
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old Apr 29th, 01, 05:29 AM
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I converted my 72 to R134. The biggest expense was a new compressor (Sanden style for March pulley system). My compressor was frozen and needed replacing anyway. It was about $200. I also replaced the drier ($20) because the system was open for awhile (hoses removed by previous owner. A shop evacuated the system, swapped o-rings, and re-charged it for a total cost of about $70. I thought it worked fine and I live near Sacramento where it gets pretty hot.

I am not sure if it can work with the stock compressor or not. If it can it will be pretty inexpensive to convert.


[This message has been edited by Camcojb (edited 04-29-2001).]
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old Apr 29th, 01, 05:39 AM
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R12 works better in a system designed for it. If the system was open{broken} I would say go with the 134 otherwise use R12. One of my cars I stuck with the R12 the system was just dry. It will make your legs numb if you leave it on too long. The system on my Vette was trashed so I went to 134. the conversion is cheap if you have to change the dryer anyway like I did. The Vette air doesn't seem to work as well as I think it should. It has a huge system but still really doesn't cool the car right. I took it back and everything checked out fine. It is just not as efficent as the R12 would have been.

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old Apr 29th, 01, 05:48 AM
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R12 costs more but works a lot better.

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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old Apr 29th, 01, 03:29 PM
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Did the conversion myself on my (non GM product) and it went pretty good. Had to replace the compressor but it was the cause of the problem to start with. Replaced all the O-rings with a kit, refilled with the R134a and messed with the pressures for a few days. I will agree with everyone else, that the R12 does cool better, but you can't buy it at Wal-Mart.


'69 getting better every day... (every pay day)
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old Apr 30th, 01, 02:15 AM
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I have done it to my car, need to change the compressor oil, and the drier to those needed for R134. Works fine, blows 38 degree air out of the vents. At $4 a can it is definately more affordable, and you can walk down to Walmart and buy all you want.

Mark Canning
1969 Indy Pace Car
350/300HP RPO Z11
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old May 1st, 01, 06:49 AM
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R12 is now going for (about) $30.00 per 12 oz. can. Converting to 134 is no problem if done correctly. You will need a new acumulator (reciever/drier), expansion valve, and a 134 retro kit with oil, 134, and the needed fittings. Autozone has them for about $35.00. You must flush out the old system of any remaining oil and R12, then convert over. If you system is in good shape, justs needs charged, I say stay with R12. If you are going into the system, convert to 134.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old May 1st, 01, 01:29 PM
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check out the crankandchrome website at www.crankandchrome.com they did a recent show on a conversion and it looked pretty inexpensive and "they" said it worked real good
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