Dismiss Notice



Register Today It's free! This box and some ads will disappear once registered!

'97 Mountaineer A/C questions

Discussion in 'Stock 1995 - 2001 Explorers' started by 429CJ-3X2, June 14, 2019.

^^Searches ExplorerForum.com^^





  1. 429CJ-3X2

    429CJ-3X2 Elite Explorer

    Joined:
    November 6, 2009
    Messages:
    1,277
    Likes Received:
    55
    Trophy Points:
    68
    City, State:
    Des Moines, Iowa
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    '01 & '02 Sport Tracs,
    I posted this in the Under the Hood section, but I don't know how many will see it there, so I'm moving it over here.
    Last summer my son said the a/c in his '97 Mountaineer 5.0 2WD wasn't working. I found the accumulator has a sizeable hole rusted through it. I wasn't too concerned about getting it fixed as long as he wasn't complaining. Most of his driving is 5 miles to work and 5 miles back, and rarely in the heat of the day. Now I'm starting to wonder about the consequences of not fixing it. It's not like the old days when a/c was an option and you could bypass the a/c compressor by getting the belt for a non-a/c vehicle.

    So my questions are,
    How much of a job is it to replace the accumulator?
    What else MUST be replaced?
    What are the consequences of not fixing it? Will the compressor eventually lock up?
     
  2. Support EF

    Join the Elite Explorers for $20

    Explorer Forum has probably saved you that much already, and will continue to save you money as you learn how to diagnose fix problems yourself and learn which modifications work without having to experiment on your own. Elite Explorer members see practically no ads, can add their own profile photo, upload photo attachments in all forums, and Media Gallery, create more private Conversations, and more. Join Today. Your support is greatly appreciated.



  3. RickOTR

    RickOTR Active Member

    Joined:
    January 4, 2000
    Messages:
    813
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    1997 Explorer Sport 4X4
    Accumulator (receiver/drier) is easy to replace and only requires a crescent wrench, 7/8" wrench, and A/C line disconnect tool. There is an 8mm screw attached to the Evaporator housing which requires an assortment of attachments from a 1/4" swivel to a 8" long extension. Once you get that screw loose, it just pulls up and out. Good idea to take out the orifice tube which is located in the line coming out bottom line of the evaporator. Once again an A/C line disconnect tool is needed. Carefully pull out the orifice tube and examine it for any contaminants on the screen, if there are any, it will need to be flushed. You may even need to replace the compressor and condenser if there are is a lot of contaminants in the system. The system will need to be vacuumed at the least for 45 minutes when everything is put back together. A professional A/C gauge is the way to go when refilling the sysytem. Took 3 cans to fill my Explorers system from empty with low side pressure around 40psi and high side pressure around 220psi.
     
    • Useful Useful x 1
  4. CDW6212R

    CDW6212R Hauls the mail. Elite Explorer

    Joined:
    June 17, 2004
    Messages:
    19,532
    Media:
    5
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    1,090
    Trophy Points:
    143
    City, State:
    Knoxville, TN
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    98 Limited AWD
    Ditto, if not too much material(or water) is in the system and compressor, just the accumulator has to be replaced. Flushing it out might not be a bad idea any time the system is open for time.
     
  5. koda2000

    koda2000 Explorer Addict

    Joined:
    September 2, 2011
    Messages:
    13,130
    Likes Received:
    1,128
    Trophy Points:
    143
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    x
    You can use a shorter belt, or there is an A/C bypass pulley available that replaces the compressor. I think Dorman makes it. Someone once posted a belt number that was the correct length that you could use w/out the compressor, but I don't recall if it was for the V6 or V8 engine.

    If you want to do it right, you can also replace the accumulator/drier, flush the system, replace the orifice tube, replace the O-rings, replace any lines that look bad, add A/C compressor oil and recharge the system if you want it to work again.

    I recall reading about certain years of Explorers/Fords where they had a foam on the accumulators, presumably for installation, which retained moisture and rotted out the accumulator. Ford later did away with the foam.
     
  6. masospaghetti

    masospaghetti Elite Explorer

    Joined:
    October 22, 2006
    Messages:
    1,316
    Media:
    6
    Likes Received:
    70
    Trophy Points:
    68
    City, State:
    Huntington Beach, CA
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    98 XLT, OHV, 4D, 4x4, 5M
    ^ Agreed, assuming just the accumulator is bad, it would be almost as much work to bypass the compressor compared to just fixing the problem.

    The suggestions for replacing the orifice tube are good since you'll have decent access when the accumulator is removed, and the orifice tubes are dirt cheap ($1-3). It's also a great way to check the health of the system by inspecting for debris on the filter.

    Otherwise, I would put it back together, pull a vacuum, and fill it up. I wouldn't replace o-rings unless they have been disturbed (your Mounty already uses R-134a compatible o-rings).
     
  7. 429CJ-3X2

    429CJ-3X2 Elite Explorer

    Joined:
    November 6, 2009
    Messages:
    1,277
    Likes Received:
    55
    Trophy Points:
    68
    City, State:
    Des Moines, Iowa
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    '01 & '02 Sport Tracs,
    Thank you for the replies! That's what I wanted to know, and hear. The accumulator, orifice tube and o-rings are about $50 before any discounts from Advance Auto. Even with paying a shop to vacuum and recharge after I replace the parts, it's worth it. If we had to replace the more expensive parts, maybe not.
     
  8. 429CJ-3X2

    429CJ-3X2 Elite Explorer

    Joined:
    November 6, 2009
    Messages:
    1,277
    Likes Received:
    55
    Trophy Points:
    68
    City, State:
    Des Moines, Iowa
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    '01 & '02 Sport Tracs,
    And yes, this one had the foam around the accumulator.
     
  9. koda2000

    koda2000 Explorer Addict

    Joined:
    September 2, 2011
    Messages:
    13,130
    Likes Received:
    1,128
    Trophy Points:
    143
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    x
    If you want to recharge the system yourself once it's back together you can get a vacuum pump from HF for around $17 and cans of R134a from WM for around $5-6$ a can. I don't remember what a can of the appro compressor oil cost, but it's not that much. I'd recommend you get get a can of liquid compressor oil because you also want to put it on the O-rings during installation. IIRC the system takes 3 lbs of refrigerant from empty, so you can get away w/out having the A/C manifold gauge set. You might save some money over paying a shop to recharge it, but I'd compare the cost.
     
  10. fastpakr

    fastpakr Elite Explorer

    Joined:
    February 18, 2005
    Messages:
    501
    Media:
    7
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    84
    Trophy Points:
    38
    City, State:
    Roanoke, VA
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    99 4wd - 5.0/4R70W/BW4406
    I know a '99 take 30 ounces of R134 and 9 of PAG 46. Should be written on the core support though.
     
  11. koda2000

    koda2000 Explorer Addict

    Joined:
    September 2, 2011
    Messages:
    13,130
    Likes Received:
    1,128
    Trophy Points:
    143
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    x
  12. CDW6212R

    CDW6212R Hauls the mail. Elite Explorer

    Joined:
    June 17, 2004
    Messages:
    19,532
    Media:
    5
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    1,090
    Trophy Points:
    143
    City, State:
    Knoxville, TN
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    98 Limited AWD
    Ditto, it's very close to that 30 ounce figure, and I recall the oil being 8oz, but that was my 91 Lincoln with the old R12 freon. I haven't had to service any of my three 2nd gens so far, lucky I've been there.

    Here's the radiator support labels on my 99 Limited. I removed the French sections and arranged the others better. I could barely read it, but it does say 1lb 14oz, plus 9oz of the oil.

    Radiator support labels no French.jpg
     
  13. Gary Crist

    Gary Crist Member

    Joined:
    October 22, 2017
    Messages:
    65
    Likes Received:
    9
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    TEXAS a whole different country
    City, State:
    TEXAS
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    1997 AWD V8
    Callsign:
    KI6FG
    One might consider replacing the compressor too.
    The system has been open for God knows how long, the
    oil SUCKS water from everywhere!

    I think a whole kit was about $200 (compressor, oil, accumulator, orifice tube, "O" ring etc.).
    Also, borrow or rent the orifice tube removal tool too.

    It is cheap to do it right, once.
     

Share This Page







We Support Our Troops!