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Discussion Starter #1
I just pulled my 94 Caprice out of its hibernation and the ac isn't working. It worked 8-9 years ago, but slowly blew warmer air up until 5 years ago and i haven't driven it more than a few miles every few months since. After putting a few hundred miles on this weekend, i definatley need ac again.

Its been a good 10 years since doing ac work in a dealership i worked at. So, I'm in need of a good set of 134a manifold gauges and a vacuum pump. Open to all suggestions on what works and what is crap. For instance i found a vacuum pump at harbor freight for $20 that i can hook up to my 20 gal air compressor. I'm willing to spend more if needed but i don't need anything heavy duty as ill likely only use it a few times in the next few years.
 

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If you don't plan on using them often, why not borrow them? The Autozone by me loans all ac related tools. They were in pretty good shape when I used them on my truck. Just another option to save some money.
 

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Great suggestion. I don't know anyone with the tools but ill definately see if i can rent them like i do with other specialty tools from the zone.
 

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Not used their A/C tools (manifold gauges and Vacumn Pump) but have no issues with certain things from Harbor Freight. Certain tools like a Ball Joint Press, Inner tie rod tool or even their Jacks I got from them and they work fine for the money you pay. Name brand/Quality tools like this from other vendors can cost you a whole bunch more, but in the end are better quality.

As far as more specialized tools like for A/C work, I would suspect for the person who may only use these a few times, you would most likely be ok with something from them if you can't find loaners. If you were looking to get more involved in A/C work, I would not recommend them for anything that would last.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
I completely agree. Ive got jackstands and a few other things from HB. The general quality of their stuff isnt great so i always figure things from there as a one time use. Then if it lasts, its a bonus.

Great news, autozone rents the gauge set and pump for free. It was $312 for the deposit but thats what credit cards are good for. My local store had a brand new oem brand gauge set and 1.8 cfm vacuum pump.

I had no pressure in the lines to start so i checked the compressor and it kicks on when its jumped, i put it on a vacuum for 1 hour and it held pressure for about a minute. All pressure was lost within 10 minutes. Tomorrow i'll add leak dye with some refrigerant and see whats leaking.
 

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Good deal on borrowing the equipment. A/C needs to be run at least once a month to keep all the seals happy. We often leave the A/C off for most of the spring and fall. Though some winter defrost duty. Good habit to run the A/C now and then.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Yeah, but with not having it work for so long and a small leak, i picked up new o-rings and some dye. Hoping to play with it again tomorrow and no leaks.
 

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How'd it go?

CMS,

How did it go? Did you chase down your leak and get it fixed? Did you get your system recharged? I am about to start some major AC work on my 96 and want to here your story and how it turned out.:)
 
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