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10 Steps to Install a Compressor

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Air Conditioning & Thermal Compressors Maintenance Solutions How to 1 min read

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In this article you will find out about the 10 steps to follow when installing a compressor.



Clean A/C System

Ensure the A/C system is clean – closed loop refrigerant flushing is recommended.  If chemical flushing is used, all chemical flushing agents must be removed from the system.

  • Do not put any additives (sealants or system treatments) into the A/C system.  Leak detection dyes, in proper amounts, are acceptable.
  • Use only mineral oil to lubricate seals in all systems (R12 and R134a).




Oil Balance System

Oil balance system – use the correct type and amount of refrigerant lubricant.



Suction Screen

Service suction screen installation – prevents system debris from damaging new compressor.



Evacuation & Charging

Accurate evacuation and charging – new systems have charge weights of +/- one ounce.



Leak Check

Leak check entire air conditioning system – replacing compressor may not correct the system leak that caused previous compressor failure.



Cycle Switch

Check cycle switch performance – improper operating switch, not shut off as specified, will cause repeat failure.



Fitting Compressor

Confirm OEM manufacturer air conditioning system performance – the compressor is not the only contributor to air conditioning performance. 

  • Install a new or OEM equivalent receiver drier or accumulator dehydrator on the vehicle.
  • On orifice tube systems, install a new orifice tube.  On expansion valve systems, clean the expansion valve inlet screen or replace the expansion valve.




Turn the compressor shaft at least 4 times, prior to installation on the vehicle – if unable to rotate by hand,  a turning tool or spanner wrench must be used.  Do not use a socket directly on the shaft nut or bolt.



Replace Components

Replace non-flushable components – parallel flow condensers and hose assemblies with mufflers after a catastrophic compressor failure.



Check Voltage

Check voltage to coil – especially if previous compressor experienced clutch failure.


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