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Trying to stay cool in all this heat


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I have a 2004 GMC Sierra that when at idle such as stopped in traffic etc, the air conditioning is luke warm. While driving however the air conditioning does get cooler, not really cold but cooler.

 

I'm thinking my air conditionor may need to be recharged. Have any of you tried the Artic Freeze or the SubZero Synthetic Booster and if so what are your thoughts about either?

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I've not used either product for my personal vehicle, but I have on others with good results. Before adding anything I would start with just checking your pressure, you don't want to overcharge your system. Once I moved to Georgia from Alaska I found that my pressure were on the low side of "good" but being with much higher ambient temps here I needed to put just a little more charge in the system, then worked great again. No matter which product you use just make sure you are adding both refrigerant and oil charge to the system. Last thing you want in this heat is to cook your compressor from low oil.

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I had an 02 and it never cooled good when stopped in traffic but did cool well when moving. The clutch fans just don't pull enough air through the condenser coils at idle. The electric fans in my 2011 do a much better job of pulling air when at idle and it still cools good. If it doesn't cool well when moving I would also recommend having the charge checked and check for leaks.

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Mine is ice cold whenever I want it to be. On my 1990 it took a while to cool down, but that was a converted system (from R12). I wouldn't try any of the AC products you see advertised, they suck and they don't tell you about other problems. We do our own, but have a full set of gauges and charging setup.

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I had an 02 and it never cooled good when stopped in traffic but did cool well when moving. The clutch fans just don't pull enough air through the condenser coils at idle. The electric fans in my 2011 do a much better job of pulling air when at idle and it still cools good. If it doesn't cool well when moving I would also recommend having the charge checked and check for leaks.

 

 

I've had my 02 since new and when it's 9x outside the air coming out of the vent is 36 or so degrees. Far better than any vehicle I have had. When the recirc actuator quit I blocked it from ever opening again. Also my fan clutch works great and when it is hot out with the air on you can really hear the air moving. I do wish it had the electric fan though.

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My 2003 had crap AC performance when stopped too. Hooked it to the AC machine at the shop (when I still worked for the dealership) and all pressures were ok, I came to the conclusion it had to be poor airflow across the condenser and that an e-fan was needed but when I added up all the parts, I decided I'd rather be hot when stopped. :lol:

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When I bought my '00, the AC was a little weak. I took it in, they said it was a little low, so they topped it up.

 

On the work order they also mentioned that when idling, the rev's are too low for it to work properly (optimumly I guess). You need to be above 1500RPM for the compressor to work at peak efficiency.

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Guess they made some changes in the later 800 models. Mine system stays cold no matter what the situation is. This summer has been a big test for it this year being so darn hot & humid. Hasn't failed to stay cold yet.The most I've had to do is top of the charge when I moved here 4 years ago.

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I have tried the SubZero (but this is the cans I used), I sell that crap to will customers that ask for it. I tried some when it came out. Never noticed a difference. I keep a digital thermometer in my vent beside the radio head. I didn't see a degree difference. Recovered the refrigerant, pulled vacuum on the system and recharged. Same pressures and same ambient temp......

 

I have added electric fans for condensers before to help at an idle. This does help greatly. ESPECIALLY, on one that has been retrofitted and the condenser not changed to a newer style.

 

If its an 04 that means it is 8 years old. Pull the radiator out, get some coil cleaner clean the core of the radiator as well as the condenser (transmission cooler also if you have one). You might be surprised how much better that tends to make things.

 

Jbo

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