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Thread: Air conditioner problem? Help!

  1. #1
    Junior Member Boingonut's Avatar
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    Air conditioner problem? Help!

    So it hit 90 here in Southern California today and promptly my air conditioner stops working! I was just driving the car normally and I heard a hissing noise. I pulled into a parking lot and the hissing seemed to be coming from the drivers side front tire. At first I thought I had a leak in the tire. I checked the tire pressure with my tire pressure gauge and it was fine. I was close to home so I drove the car home and parked it. The hissing continued and after 15 minutes I checked the tire pressure again, again no change.

    The hissing lessened after about an hour and then quite altogether and the tire is fine so it not the tire. Anyway I decided to take the car out for a short drive to see if anything was wrong. My I turned on the AC and it was blowing just fine, but no cold air. I was having no problem earlier in the day and the AC was ice cold.

    I am not much of a mechanic and have never worked on AC problems before, but I was wondering if you guys think the hissing around the drivers front tire and the AC not working are related. Thanks!

  2. #2
    TGTF (Too Greek to Function) AugustneverEnds's Avatar
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    I am not super A/C savvy but you may have a leak in a hose for the A/C. Or hissing in a D means your mode switch is dying and needs to be rebuilt with one of these: http://store.delorean.com/p-7759-mod...build-kit.aspx

    Is your car retrofitted for R134A or still using R12? If it is retrofitted it should be easy to buy a can of R134A, add it and see if your A/C starts blowing cold again and how long it lasts.

    BTW Welcome to the forum, it's excellent to see another 1982 owner on here!
    Nick A.
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  3. #3
    Delorean Guru
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    You most likely popped the A/C hose going from the compressor to the evaporator. Time to replace all 3 hoses. Find a nearby A/C shop and then order the hoses from your favorite Delorean vendor. You should also replace the dryer, the belt, the idler pulleys, the oil, and the service valve cores. Try to find a shop that can refill you with R-12 if that is even possible in CA. The shop should work with you, letting you get the parts and they put them in.
    David Teitelbaum

  4. #4
    Admins Never Retire Ron's Avatar
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    If it's by the driver's tire, check the condenser and the AC hoses going to it too.
    AC.jpg

  5. #5
    Junior Member Boingonut's Avatar
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    Thanks guys, good tips! I'm thinking its the air condenser hoses because just looking at the diagram that was exactly where the hiss was coming from.

    I'm not sure if it is an R12, DMC did a bunch of work on it 2 years ago and pretty much upgraded everything for the previous owner. I've looked though the repair receipts and don't see anything on the AC so it might still be the old unit, but I recall the previous owner saying that the AC had had work done. I've got to go into DMC next week anyway because the brakes are terrible right now so I guess I can live without the AC for a week and have them look at it when I get it down there.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boingonut View Post
    So it hit 90 here in Southern California today and promptly my air conditioner stops working! I was just driving the car normally and I heard a hissing noise. I pulled into a parking lot and the hissing seemed to be coming from the drivers side front tire. At first I thought I had a leak in the tire. I checked the tire pressure with my tire pressure gauge and it was fine. I was close to home so I drove the car home and parked it. The hissing continued and after 15 minutes I checked the tire pressure again, again no change.

    The hissing lessened after about an hour and then quite altogether and the tire is fine so it not the tire. Anyway I decided to take the car out for a short drive to see if anything was wrong. My I turned on the AC and it was blowing just fine, but no cold air. I was having no problem earlier in the day and the AC was ice cold.

    I am not much of a mechanic and have never worked on AC problems before, but I was wondering if you guys think the hissing around the drivers front tire and the AC not working are related. Thanks!
    What you will probably find is the high side condensor hose contacted the bolt on the steering ujoint. While most cars had the hose factory zip tied to the brake pipes to stay clear of the rotating ujoint occasionally someone cuts the tie and does not replace it (usually when replacing the hose) leaving it in harms way. On early cars (not yours) the bolt was 5mm longer than necessary and commonly would cut the hose at that location. Over the years this has been the most common cause of hose blowouts. Other common spots are above the fuel filter (rubs on banjo bolt) and on the low pressure side over the transaxle on manual cars (rubs on clutch fluid pipe). I'd estimate 90% of A/C hose ruptures occur at one of these three areas.
    Rob

  7. #7
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    +1 on what Rob said. I've had luck repairing A/C hoses with barbed splice repair tubes. They are size specific. I know the low side uses a 5/8 diameter. The high side might be 1/2 inch, but that's just a guess. Simply cut the hose at the damaged section, insert the barbed tube (grease the heck out tube, it's a snug fit) then clamp the hose on both sides of the splice. Add a zip tie to hold it back from the steering u-jount and you are done.

    With regard to refrigerant, I've had great luck with 134a on a stock system.
    Andrew
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew View Post
    +1 on what Rob said. I've had luck repairing A/C hoses with barbed splice repair tubes. They are size specific. I know the low side uses a 5/8 diameter. The high side might be 1/2 inch, but that's just a guess. Simply cut the hose at the damaged section, insert the barbed tube (grease the heck out tube, it's a snug fit) then clamp the hose on both sides of the splice. Add a zip tie to hold it back from the steering u-jount and you are done.

    With regard to refrigerant, I've had great luck with 134a on a stock system.
    Yes barbed splice kits are used for A/C repairs but A/C techs refer to them as temporary repairs. That being said....temporary can last a surprisely long time. We used to use them back in the day when only the NOS one peice hoses were readily available to save the labor hassle and expense of lifting the body to change the low side hose. With the availability of assembleable (is that a word?) hoses it makes more sense to just replace the offending hose unless your budget is tight. Of course the correct way as David pointed out would be to change all three hoses with updated barrier replacements in a best case scenaro but not everyone can afford that. The ID of the high side hose is 13/32" btw if you're taking the barbed route to repair it.
    Rob

  9. #9
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    long barb

    My steering u-joint cut the AC hose some 28 years ago.
    Patched it with a barb connection, still holding!....

  10. #10
    Delorean Guru
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    Quote Originally Posted by SS Spoiler View Post
    My steering u-joint cut the AC hose some 28 years ago.
    Patched it with a barb connection, still holding!....
    While the joint may still "hold" I would bet it is a leaker. Barbed repair fittings are meant for a specific type hose, not the OEM one. That requires crimped fittings. If, in fact, you are on a tight budget then just replace that one hose. False economy though. The other hoses and seals will continue to leak and may eventually pop. To replace just one hose is a lot of effort because you must evacuate and recharge the system each time you work on it. Better to get it all done at once and have a good, reliable, leak-tight system. With that repair, it is in exactly the worst spot. The hose was already susceptible to damage from the U joint. Now, with those clamps it is all that much easier to get damaged again. The hose from the compressor to the condenser is subject to the highest temperatures and pressures. That means it is the highest stressed hose of all. And it is over 30 years old! They were NEVER intended to last that long. I consider the A/C system essential to the use of the car if the temperature is above 60 degrees F and it is a sunny day. But that's just me. Using the barbed connector was OK when that was the only choice. Today we have better options.
    David Teitelbaum

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