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Replacing Accumulator & Orifice Tube in 98 Explorer 5.0

King$nake

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Year, Model & Trim Level
1998 Eddie Bauer 5.0
Hello,

This is a 1998 Explorer 5.0 w/ 152,xxx miles. About 6 months ago, my AC system went out, and I tried to do a recharge kit myself with stop-leak in the recharge kit, bad move I guess. I never could get cold air to blow so I finally took it to the mechanic.

I had the A/C Compressor replaced, the A/C system was flushed, and the system was completely evac'd and recharged.

Problem is, the air is cooler, but it is not cold like it used to be.

I did not replace the accumulator or the orifice tube, as I didnt want to fork out the extra cash for it at the time (was having my mechanic do this work) because I was already about $800 into this (just the AC system!)

For some reason, yesterday the air was blowing very cold after 1 hour of driving, but today its not blowing cold at all. There are no leaks in the system.

Im thinking that if I replace the accumulator and the orifice tube, it may help. What do you guys say? I think the accumulator is all gunked up from the original do-it-yourself recharge kit I used with stop leak. I have done all the mechanical work on this truck myself so Im mechanically inclined, but I just do not know very much about AC systems.

Assuming the accumulator and orifice tube is the issue, can I just I have the system evac'd, and replace these 2 pieces, and have the system recharged again? Or is it not that easy?

Any help would be greatly appreciated, thank you very much
 
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drdoom

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I don't know about the temperature issues, but I did the same job you are talking about (well the AC guy did the evac & charge) and the R&R is real easy.
 
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swetrid

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Stop leak in the freon will fudge the whole system. If you are lucky the orifice tube absorbed most of it. I would replace orifice tube and accumulator to start and recheck.
 
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King$nake

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Ya, I really messed up doing the stop-leak in the AC system.

So I ordered a new Accumulator for $17, should be here in a few days. Going to also order the orifice tube.

Is it as simple as Evac'ing the sytem, replacing the accumulator and orifice tube, and then recharging the system?

Do I need any special tools to replace those 2 parts?
 
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drdoom

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The only special tools you will need are the line disconnect tools, sorry I cannot recall the sizes right now. Needle nose pliers should work to remove the orifice tube.
 
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King$nake

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Cool deal, thanks. I actually just found some DIY YouTube videos, doesn't look too difficult.

So, just confirm though - before I replace these 2 things, I need to have a shop evac my system and then I can replace the accumulator/orifice - then I just need to have them recharge it?

Im assuming I dont have to flush the system since it was just done a few days ago when the compressor was replaced?

thanks again
 
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drdoom

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Yeah, King$nake, that should do it. Another consideration is the oil charge, I have been told a bit of oil will remain in the old accumulator, so adding a little bit to account for that loss is considered to be wise. Your AC shop should do that when they re-charge.
Best Wishes.
 
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King$nake

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Ok thanks drdoom.

So I just got back from the mechanic that did the AC work, and they evac'd the system for me and saved the freon.

I came home and replaced the orifice filter. I pulled one out that was brand new just a few days ago and it was GUNKED up big time with crap (from all that stop leak). This is now the third orifice filter that was gunked up. I put a new one in, but there is no way to test because the system isn't charged. I have a new accumulator on order anyways that I will install before I get charged.

Few questions please:

- How difficult is it to 'oil' the new accumulator?

- If I run my A/C system now - even though there is no freon in it - will it still circulate the junk onto the new orifice filter? Im trying to clean out the system completely and I have a few other orifice filters on standby. I would like to gunk them up and replace them as many times as I can before I get it recharged
 
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King$nake

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orifice.jpg


Here is the THIRD orifice tube I've pulled out just in the last week. The new plan is to have the system completely flushed AGAIN by another mechanic, then I will install a new accumulator and replace the air compressor again (I just put a new one in but its already failing because of all the junk). The new orifice tube shouldn't be dirty at that time because there is no freon in the sytem now, and I put a fresh tube in today.

Once I get system flushed again, the accumulator installed and the compressor replaced again, I will get the system charged again and hope this time everything works ok.

Lesson learned - never, ever use stop leak in a A/C system
 
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needhelp1

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1992 Ford Explorer XLT 4x
Please Help!

Where is the Orifice Tube/Filter located? I was told by a mechanic that I need to replace it, however he told me one place and another mechanic told me another...I already had almost everything else replaced and my hose (I believe it was the high pressure) popped off when the mechanic put the R12 in. We opened the ? Compressor ? at the firewall and it was not there. He said it could be shoved into it and I would need to either crack it open to get it out or use gas and blow it out (sound wrong and dangerous). However, the other mechanic told me it was in one on the high pressure hoses. Before I rip my car apart for such a little thing I'd really like to know where it should be. 1992 Ford Explorer XLT 4x4, I went to Auto Zone and they could not find it in the schematics, nor could I find it in my parts location manual.
 
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drdoom

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It should be in the lower line of the accumulator.
 
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