Air Conditioning Service and Repair Kits
A/C Repair Kits for DIY Projects
Even if you can't tell an accumulator from an actuator, there are still a lot of routine inspections and maintenance you can complete on your vehicle's air conditioner from the comfort of your home garage. Keep in mind, if your automotive air conditioner is kept off for long periods of time, various A/C components will dry out, making the entire air conditioning system susceptible to leaks, cracks and failure. Running your A/C for as little as ten minutes a week, which circulates the oil, lubricates moving parts and conditions seals and hoses, will help maintain the system.
The standard air conditioning system in a car, truck, SUV or minivan is comprised of three main components: the compressor in the engine compartment, the evaporator in the climate control system air box and the condenser in front of the radiator. The compressor circulates refrigerant gas through the condenser and evaporator. The climate control fan blows air over the evaporator, and any heat in the air is absorbed by the refrigerant. Cold air comes out the other side of the evaporator and through the vents into your vehicle's cabin. Be aware, hybrid vehicles and electric vehicles with non-belt driven (electric driven), high-voltage air conditioning compressors require special lubricant, which is incompatible with the oil in most air conditioning repair kits.
An aftermarket air conditioner replacement can certainly come with a high cost and often requires professional labor, which is why The NAPA Network is always standing by with dedicated air conditioning specialists. However, a routine tune-up, like a recharge, is a simple DIY project that our A/C service kits allow anyone to perform.
A basic DIY A/C charging kit typically includes an adapter hose to connect a can of refrigerant to the air conditioning system's low-side service port. Some kits incorporate a pressure gauge, while other air conditioning charging kits contain leak detection dye to use with ultraviolet light to detect any seepage. Keep in mind, even without a leak, any tightly closed air conditioning system loses some refrigerant charge over time.
In What Condition is Your Air Conditioner?
Are you an aspiring A/C service technician who wants to take on an air conditioning repair job for your personal commuter car or even fleet of vehicles? If your prized pickup or trusty van is leaking freon (a typical refrigerant compound), you must address the leak before the A/C system runs dry and begins to fill with moist air, which will corrode the expensive air conditioning components.
Detecting a leak in an automotive air conditioning system is a time-consuming, complex process that requires technical tools and trained ability. One reason A/C parts replacement is so tricky is that the entire air conditioning system must remain sealed at all times. If the seal is broken, the freon must be captured and stored. Venting freon into the open air is illegal. Keep in mind, leaking refrigerant is difficult to identify because it is an odorless, colorless gas.
To get started, focus on spotting the signs of an A/C leak coming from your hard-working system. A little leaking water is a normal function of an automotive air conditioner, especially in humid weather conditions. In fact, your air conditioning system is designed to pull moisture out of the air to generate cool air, and then drain the excess water from under your hood.
Dip a clean rag in the wet puddle under your vehicle. If the moisture on the rag is colored or has an odor, then it most likely isn't water. It is possibly leaking A/C compressor oil. Visually inspect the pressurized lines and fittings of your A/C system. When in doubt, purchase an A/C UV Dye & Oil Injector Kit to take on the challenge!
Other popular DIY products for an automotive A/C repair include an A/C flush kit to remove harmful contaminants, an A/C system seal kit to replace worn out gaskets and an A/C line repair kit with orifice tube. Browse our excellent selection of air conditioning parts available for your at-home repair or reach out to your local NAPA AutoCare Center today for professional service.