Recharg­ing air­con

Keep cool by keep­ing your A/C in top nick. Russ Brown shows you how

LRO (UK) - - Contents -

Russ Brown ex­plains how to keep your cool

Air con­di­tion­ing is an in­creas­ingly com­mon lux­ury on Land Rover prod­ucts, but is of­ten ig­nored by DIY ser­vicers un­til the day – usu­ally a very hot one – when it no longer works.

You then dis­cover that there is not much main­te­nance you can do on the sys­tem at home with­out spe­cialised equip­ment to re­move the re­frig­er­ant, due to it be­ing il­le­gal to vent R134a into the at­mos­phere.

How­ever, most of the prob­lems with the sys­tem are due to the gas pres­sure getting low, as was the case on our TDCI De­fender. De­spite all the le­gal­i­ties sur­round­ing R134a, the av­er­age car leaks about 10% per year, and it needs to be kept topped up.

You can take it into Hal­fords who will top it up for £49, but for £10 more you can do it your­self at home with an STP kit. So why would you bother? Bear with me. Well, for your £59.98 you get a re­us­able gauge to retest af­ter fill­ing and enough re­frig­er­ant to keep your A/C topped up for nu­mer­ous years, or if you are a multi-car fam­ily you can get them all into a state of cool­ness. You also get a ten­ner de­posit back when you re­turn the recharge bot­tle.

The same prin­ci­ples ap­ply to all ve­hi­cles with post mid-1990s R134a sys­tems. The gauge is pretty crude, so if pos­si­ble try it on work­ing air-con to see what you should ex­pect. The in­struc­tions on the bot­tle and STP’S on­line video can be tricky to un­der­stand for the first-time user, so let us walk you through the job.

Most air-con prob­lems are caused by low pres­sure

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