Where Is The A/C Orifice Tube Located? | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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Where Is The A/C Orifice Tube Located?


June 7, 2004
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City, State
Year, Model & Trim Level
94 XLT
Greetings! I have a 94 XLT with new A/C condenser and evaporator. The system was fully charged and held pressure but never really got cold in 90 deg weather. I read much about orifice tubes but do not know where it is located on my vehicle. Can anyone explain where?

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I have searched through many messages posted and see that the orifice tube may be located in one of two places in the same line. How do I be sure which location, and what problems with the a/c system would occur if there were two tubes in the line?

the orifice tube is located on the passenger side of the engine compartment.

See the large AC tube screwed into your receiver/drier? About 6-8 inches BELOW that there is another fitting. Pop that fitting apart and your orifice tube is right there at the connection with the tube facing towards the rear of the vehicle

Does the AC need to be freon free to check it?

Yes, and you need a special tool to disconnect the line and an extraction tool if you want to reuse it. I didn't use the tool because I was replacing it.

My apologies for reviving such an old post. But... if I found it helpful some 10 years later, then someone else out there will too!

About 6-8 inches BELOW that there is another fitting. Pop that fitting apart and your orifice tube is right there
Does anyone have suggestions on how to get to this fitting/tube??? From above, it seems to be blocked by hoses/harnesses/brackets/etc. VERY frustrating. Is there an easy way to access this fitting to open in up & get at the orifice? Preferably without taking apart half of the engine compartment???

Thanks in advance :thumbsup:

I took out the wheel well liner to access. Job done! Also got to replace that hard to reach spark plug while I was there!

I recommended using an orifice tool to insert the new part. The plastic isn't sturdy enough to push against (I actually broke one but had a spare).


What happens if you put the new orifice tube in backwards? I'm unsure what way is the correct way?

Poor AC performance.

In this thread http://www.explorerforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=160113 , a member specifies that the short end goes toward the firewall. That is the end without all the screen material, or the end that seems to easily break in half if you insert without using the proper tool.

Also in that thread, it looks like there's an alternate way of accessing the location: http://www.explorerforum.com/forums/showpost.php?p=1454722&postcount=7 I can't tell if that route is any easier... looks a little cramped. Removing the liner was a huge pain, but once I was down there, plenty of room to work & to check other neglected components.