1989 Olds Custom Cruiser A/C Questions

Discussion in 'General Automotive Tech' started by jmh139, Jul 6, 2021.

  1. jmh139

    jmh139 New Member

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    I was recently lucky enough to find an all original 1989 Custom Cruiser with no rust and 78,000 miles. It was non running but the fix was only a $20 fuel pump. The only thing that does not work now is the A/C. The compressor is not kicking on at all.

    Can anyone tell me what the best way to go with this system is? It looks to be the original R-12, never converted. Is there a kit I should look at that replaces the Compressor/Dryer/etc and then take it to someone to have it charged, or would it be best to just have a shop fix it and do the conversion?

    Thanks for any advise.
     
  2. elB

    elB Well-Known Member

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    There are no kits for these cars. To convert to R-134a you likely will need to replace all of the original barrier hose with modern hoses and crimped fittings, change out the orifice tube, replace the receiver\dryer, drain ALL of the oil out of the system, re-o-ring the hoses, and then attempt to pull it all under vacuum and verify it is holding. This doesn't get into compressor replacement...

    Sure, you can do this yourself if you are careful and have the right tools. But you may be money ahead paying a good shop that is going to do it right to fix it.
     
  3. jmh139

    jmh139 New Member

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    Thanks for the response, from my research I have been leaning to just having a shop fix it.
     
  4. 60Mercman

    60Mercman Well-Known Member

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    Good luck with it and happy belated birthday!
     
  5. Silvertwinkiehobo

    Silvertwinkiehobo "Nothing is foolproof as fools are ingenious."

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    The compressor is in newer RWD cars, trucks and Vans with R134a, and the receiver/drier should just about be the same design, IIRC. So then it comes down to flushing the evaporator and condenser, changing the hoses and orifice tube, and replacing all the original o-rings with correct-size HNBR o-rings. Then yes, hook up a gauge set and a vacuum pump, pull down to 30" vacuum. If it holds 30" for more than a half-hour, you're good to charge the system.
     
  6. kevdupuis

    kevdupuis Membrane

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    For the do it your self type person there is also envirosafe, you'll still want to flush the system, replace o-rings, dryer, expansion valve and refill with oil but you can re-use the original hoses if they're in good condition. One caveat, if you go this route no a/c shop will touch your system, I went this route since Mercedes climate control on the early cars was adequate at best and converting to r-134 would have left the system even less effective, r-12 is also still some what available, though finding a shop that can or wants to use it is another question.

    Research your options and decide which way you want to go.
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2021

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