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Thread: Refrigerant Capacity & General AC Discussion...

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    Refrigerant Capacity & General AC Discussion...

    Guys -

    I just got through servicing my truck's A/C, then my Lexus A/C, and happen to look at the sticker under the hood regarding the Mirage A/C capacity.

    Background - When I was working for Hyundai-Kia, a couple of years of that was spent doing A/C audits. A person learns a lot about such systems doing work like that. One of the first things I learned was that the A/C system is not very complex. But you don't know what you don't know. Based on that experience, I learned that the only good way to service the A/C system is to evacuate it and then add the correct amount of refrigerant. Just adding refrigerant is like throwing a dart at a dart board in a room with no light at midnight. Those gauges that come on some refrigerant bottles is still a shot in the dark.

    Fast forward ~10 years (time flies) from doing those audits, I've been lazy and not taking care of my vehicles A/C systems. My truck's A/C hasn't worked effectively for YEARS. I recently went to service it and and remembered I let someone borrow my vacuum pump. I don't remember who it was, but I do remember as it was driving away I said to myself, "I wonder if I'll ever see it again." I never did. And I cannot remember who that was. So I had to go buy another one (~$80).

    I just serviced (empty, vacuum, hold vacuum, refill using a weight scale) my truck's A/C, now it snows inside. It is wonderful.

    I also serviced my Lexus LS 460L's system, just because it was cycling at idle. It is now Antarctica inside. But it wasn't bad before, just cycling.

    While doing the Lexus, I popped the hood on the Mirage and found the sticker regarding the A/C system refrigerant and laughed out loud!

    My truck's refrigerant capacity: 904 grams (and the truck's cab is smaller than the Lexus).
    My Lexus's refrigerant capacity: 750 grams (650 for the standard car, 750 for the dual zone A/C).
    My Mirage's refrigerant capacity: 270 grams!

    Even the refrigerant capacity is cute and little! I wanted to add that yes, a small refrigerant capacity (and the associated balance of compressor, evaporator and condenser sizing) does effect cooling capability. So yes, we have less cooling capability. I will say though that with correct system refrigerant capacity is, that the system is 'adequate.' But I don't believe it will ever be Antarctica inside our vehicles.

    In the end, this is NOT a complaint about our A/C system. It is just like the rest of the car. Little, small, inexpensive, and oh so very cute. 270 grams (340 gram can / 12 ounces) is less than the standard 12 ounce refrigerant cans! So it is very inexpensive to recharge this system. It sure would be nice if the system had been designed to be 12 ounces even.


        __________________________________________

        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2020 Mirage ES 1.2 manual: 42.3 mpg (US) ... 18.0 km/L ... 5.6 L/100 km ... 50.8 mpg (Imp)


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    Fummins (06-23-2021),MetroMPG (06-23-2021),ThunderG (06-23-2021)

  3. #2
    7miles... since you seem to know your stuff, can I go off topic and ask you an unreated question about the non-fuctional AC in my $800 Honda Fit?

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        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2014 Mirage SE 1.2 manual: 64.5 mpg (US) ... 27.4 km/L ... 3.6 L/100 km ... 77.4 mpg (Imp)


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    Sure - I like an off-topic digression.

        __________________________________________

        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2020 Mirage ES 1.2 manual: 42.3 mpg (US) ... 18.0 km/L ... 5.6 L/100 km ... 50.8 mpg (Imp)


  5. #4
    OK. Thanks!

    Actually, to keep things relatively on-topic here, I posted the details in my Fit thread.

        __________________________________________

        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2014 Mirage SE 1.2 manual: 64.5 mpg (US) ... 27.4 km/L ... 3.6 L/100 km ... 77.4 mpg (Imp)


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    I recall now a question I had about the Mirage's A/C system. While recharging the Lexus, it has a handily placed refrigerant sight window. It rolled cloudy for a long time while recharging. I had always heard it should run clear when running properly. Somewhere in the last maybe 15% of refrigerant being added, indeed the sight glass window went perfectly clear. And my automotive A/C thermometer I placed in a vent during the recharging went into the green target zone.

    It sure made a redneck feel good to see that window go clear. Based on that, and the fact that the Mirage's A/C doesn't feel as capable (at idle especially) as the Lexus A/C, I popped the hood on the Mirage. I was going to crank it, run the A/C, and observe the sight window. First I looked and found that 270 gram (it actually read 0.270 kg) sticker, and then looked for a sight glass window. I DID NOT find a sight glass window. Usually they are near the dryer, before or after I cannot remember. But I couldn't find a sight glass window and had to get back to what I was doing (recharging the Lexus A/C).

    Does anyone know if our system has a sight glass window and where it is? I found the High and Low ports of course. A sight glass window is not mandated, and leaving it off would be a cost savings. So I suppose it may not have one.

    BTW - I believe I read that the previous Mirage's refrigerant capacity was 260 grams. Maybe that was up to 2017 or 2018, whenever that minor model change happened.

        __________________________________________

        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2020 Mirage ES 1.2 manual: 42.3 mpg (US) ... 18.0 km/L ... 5.6 L/100 km ... 50.8 mpg (Imp)


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    MetroMPG (06-23-2021)

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    Quote Originally Posted by 7milesout View Post
    I recall now a question I had about the Mirage's A/C system. While recharging the Lexus, it has a handily placed refrigerant sight window. It rolled cloudy for a long time while recharging. I had always heard it should run clear when running properly. Somewhere in the last maybe 15% of refrigerant being added, indeed the sight glass window went perfectly clear. And my automotive A/C thermometer I placed in a vent during the recharging went into the green target zone.

    It sure made a redneck feel good to see that window go clear. Based on that, and the fact that the Mirage's A/C doesn't feel as capable (at idle especially) as the Lexus A/C, I popped the hood on the Mirage. I was going to crank it, run the A/C, and observe the sight window. First I looked and found that 270 gram (it actually read 0.270 kg) sticker, and then looked for a sight glass window. I DID NOT find a sight glass window. Usually they are near the dryer, before or after I cannot remember. But I couldn't find a sight glass window and had to get back to what I was doing (recharging the Lexus A/C).

    Does anyone know if our system has a sight glass window and where it is? I found the High and Low ports of course. A sight glass window is not mandated, and leaving it off would be a cost savings. So I suppose it may not have one.

    BTW - I believe I read that the previous Mirage's refrigerant capacity was 260 grams. Maybe that was up to 2017 or 2018, whenever that minor model change happened.
    I've never seen a sight glass on these cars. I think our 1995 L8000 has a sight glass? I don't recall seeing one in anything I've owned, mostly 90's-2000's junk though.

        __________________________________________

        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2014 Mirage SE wussie cvt edition. 1.2 automatic: 37.7 mpg (US) ... 16.0 km/L ... 6.2 L/100 km ... 45.3 mpg (Imp)


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    have you happen to know what is the maximum pressure the ac system can hold?

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    No, I didn't note pressure, except the low side. And that would not answer your question. I do not pay any attention to max pressure in the way I do it.

        __________________________________________

        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2020 Mirage ES 1.2 manual: 42.3 mpg (US) ... 18.0 km/L ... 5.6 L/100 km ... 50.8 mpg (Imp)


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    Quote Originally Posted by 7milesout View Post
    No, I didn't note pressure, except the low side. And that would not answer your question. I do not pay any attention to max pressure in the way I do it.
    Because i was just wondering if upgrading the compressor on this car will make any difference because during hot day in a tropical country like ours the ac of this thing is need to be on full blast just to compensate with the outside temp, can the ac pipes, evap and condenser can accommodate a larger capacity compressor.

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    Quote Originally Posted by allrock View Post
    Because i was just wondering if upgrading the compressor on this car will make any difference because during hot day in a tropical country like ours the ac of this thing is need to be on full blast just to compensate with the outside temp, can the ac pipes, evap and condenser can accommodate a larger capacity compressor.
    If you want to increase the capacity of the system, you will need to increase the surface area of the evaporator & condenser. Increasing the capacity of the compressor without the other components will not help you... Just my thoughts...


    I didn't know what to do, so I didn't do anything

        __________________________________________

        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2018 Mirage GT 1.2 automatic: 38.1 mpg (US) ... 16.2 km/L ... 6.2 L/100 km ... 45.8 mpg (Imp)


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