134 conversion


My a/c is noit running cold air right now and I need to convert it to 134. I have the kit. They say that I still need to have the old stuff removed by the shop. Is this true? If not can it be done without going there? I’m glad to take it in but just want to make sure they aren’t blowing smoke. Thanks.


To the best of my knowledge, the old refrigerant MUST be removed by a properly equipped shop by a certified technician. Otherwise, bad things can happen, including personal injury.


Thanks. Now for a second question. I have the EZ chill conversion system. It has 3 cans of 134A. According to the Cd it has 10 oz of refrigerant, 2 oz;'s of oil and some o-ring conditioners and leak sealers. I was told by a a/c technician to not put this in as it will cause damage to the system due to the conditioner and sealer. The guy at O’reilly’s said it wouldn’t be a problem because they sell this kit all the time and they would get complaints and wouldn’t sell it due to the fact they would be liable for damages.

THese two accounts seem opposed. Who’s right? Thanks


R-134a was introduced because its predecessor, R-12, destroys the atmosphere’s protective layer of ozone. Federal law requires that air conditioning service be performed by a properly trained and certified technician and that the refrigerant be reclaimed as much as possible. I doubt that a non-professional can buy refrigerant any more.

Your A/C probably needs repair, not just recharging with refrigerant. Since R-12 is still available, one route is to fix the problem and continue to use R-12. Converting to R-134a is more complicated than simply recharging with it. Even if your A/C was functioning perfectly, there are components that must be replaced in order to use R-134a. (To learn more, search Wikipedia for “freon” and pick the link for R-12.) I suggest you get two bids – one for repairing the system and sticking with R-12 and the other for conversion to R-134a. Then you can decide.


Depending on the mileage and year model of the vehicle in question, it may not be blowing cold because the system is empty. This makes the question moot.

If this is the case then you need to repair the leaks first. If the vehicle is 7-10 years old, 100k miles or whatever, then the most likely cause of a leak is a compressor shaft seal.


Since your system does not work, what makes you think there is any R12 left in it?? If it all has leaked out, installing your 3 cans of r134a will do nothing, it will all leak out too. If there is SOME Freon in your system, I would top it off with Freeze-12 (check google) and return the 134 kit. You can check for freon by removing the safety caps and depressing one or both of the schrader (tire) valves at the service ports on your system. If you feel the planet is doomed anyway, you can remove the valves with a tool designed for tire valve-stems and dump the remaining refrigerant in your system, avoiding a trip to the repair shop, where they will just laugh at you anyway…

If you don’t know what you are doing, DON’T DO IT! And PLEASE, at LEAST wear safety goggles…


Okay, a few things.

  1. DO NOT DUMP THAT R12!!! That’s bad for the earth, if it hits you it’ll give you frostbite, if so much as a drop gets your eye you’re blind, and if you breathe it strongly enough you will end up hospitalized.
  2. Dumping the R12 at home will not remove all the old oil from the system and will allow atmosphere to enter the system. When you recharge with R134a the new stuff will mix with atmosphere in the system and create something called “black death” which will destroy the entire system.
  3. You only need to have this system evacuated to do the conversion. All the old components can be used. When a shop does the evac, they will watch the system to see if it holds its vacuum. If it does, then it’s okay to recharge. If the vacuum dissipates, they will know it has a leak and tell you. Then you can decide to find it.
  4. I used to advocate using a specific brand and type of leak sealer but now I am a very big cynic on this subject. That leak sealer that I loved so much clogged my orifice tube, and now I’m looking at a potential catastrophy if the clog gets any worse. If I do the repair on my system, or ever replace the refrigerant, I will NOT be using ANYTHING but R134a, and Ester Oil. That’s it.

Have a shop evacuate it. If it holds vacuum, then go ahead and refill it. The conversion kit will be okay because the amount of sealant in the kit is very very small.

If it won’t hold vacuum, the shop can find the leak for you and tell you how much it’ll cost to fix.



A couple of comments:

If your system is not working, it probably has a leak. Take it to a shop, have the leak found and corrected, have the system evacuated, then have it refilled. Do not vent the residual R-12 to the environment.

You do not have to convert to R-134a, you have the option of refilling with R-12 or converting to 134a. If you chose to have it converted, have it done professionally, including a system flush. Get prices for both options, don’t let the shop tell you R-12 is not available, it is readily available (but most shops charge about $50/pound for it).

Do not use any of the “alternative” products suck as “Freeze 12,” you will have problems finding a shop to service it in the future. Either stick to R-12 or do a proper R-134a conversion, do not bother with any conversion “kits.”