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You've done well to get 10 years out of your compressor. You can purchase rebuilt or new AC compressors from most auto parts retailers, then just remove the old one and replace it. Follow the directions and you shouldn't go too far wrong. One word of warning though, if the oil is black or has "chunks" in it, you'll need to replace as many of the parts as you can, such as the rubber hoses, expnasion valve and the receiver/dryer. In truth, it's probably a good idea to replace them anyway. But if the oil is not perfectly clean, you also need to completely flush out or replace the condensor and evaporator. Don't put your new compressor in a system that has abrasive "stuff" in the lines that will destroy the new unit. After it's all back together, check for leaks. That is typically accomplished when the ac tech evacuates the system using a vacuum pump. He typically watches the system to see if the pressure starts to sneak up. If there's a leak it should be repaired before putting the refrigerant into the lines. Once you have determined that the system isn't leaking and IS clean, you can put some of the 134A refrigerant and oil MIX back into the AC system. If you live in a very humid area, you might build up a little moisture in the lines that can potentially cause problems with the AC system, but that small amount of moisture is usually picked up by the receiver/dryer. Yes, most AC techs will tell you that you MUST evacuate the AC lines before you add the refrigerant, but realistically, it will probably be ok if you don't. If you do it yourself, figure 2 to 4 hundred for the compresor, hoses, receiver dryer, expansion valve, cleaning solvent for the Condenser and Evaporator and enough 134A and oil to recharge the system, should be around $500 to $700, depending on where you get the parts. Sometimes it is possible to just replace the seal, but that generally doesn't work out well since the seal probably went bad because of a worn bearing. No leak stopping material will really work on an AC compressor, since the moving part will just cause it to fail almost as quickly as you put it in.

2006-07-15 18:13:38
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