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Back in 2017, my wife complained that her A/C wasn't blowing as cold as she remembered from when we bought it new. I took it to my then favorite shop and they pumped it down and refilled it with freon. It blew COLD then.
Fast forward to yesterday. I had my Accord system re-charged since I hadn't done anything with it since we bought it used back in 2012. I figured since it worked so well having the CR-V's recharged back in '17, it couldn't hurt, especially with an impending trip out to Lost Wages this coming weekend. So, I had my car done and I'll tell you I'm glad I did. The Snap-On machine the shop used (different shop than in '17, they retired and closed up) to recover the freon printed out a readout of what it recovered. The system was almost out of freon and very low on oil. I think I dodged a bullet on that one as it was still blowing coolish air but not like the COLD air it does now. When I got home my wife again complained that she didn't think her CR-V was blowing cold, again.
I checked the record book and it had been 2+ years since the last recharge. So, I took her car down to the same shop I'd just had do my Accord. Sure enough, the tech found a Schrader valve cap that was moist when he took it off. As he had shown me on my Accord, my caps were bone dry, which validated his assumtion of a leaking valve on the CR-V system.
He replaced the valve once he got the system evacuated, hooked the machine back up, and drew a vacuum for 45 minutes and refilled both the oil and freon.
I'm only a little bit miffed that her CR-V blows slightly colder than my car, but then again, maybe they are both working the same it's just that I have to set my temp lower to compare the systems on an equal basis.
Anyways, this post is all about that 'forgotten' system, at least I'd forgotten about it. On a previous Accord I had, I never once in 9 years did a thing to the A/C system as it still blew acceptably cold, at least for me. It was probably OK from my standpoint as I always would set the temp to 72* and forgot it.
I think I'm going to set up a routine now of having the systems recharged every two years or so.
Here's a picture of the offending Shrader valve seal.
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