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Can a Refrigeration Unit be Recharged with Freon?


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#1 Frank Hamann

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 02:27 PM

I have a Dixie Narco soda machine that stopped cooling. I removed the refrigeration unit and the fans and compressor seem to be working good. The evaporation radiator barely gets cold. Can this be because of low freon? Is it worth the trouble to add more freon? How much does it cost to add freon? Can the freon cans from Pep Boys be used? This refrigeration unit has two recepticles that look like tire air inlets. Is this where I can add freon? Can I do this myself, or can only a pro do this job? How much will it cost to add freon? I found someone who will sell me a used working refrigeration unit for $175. Is this used unit worth it or should I pay someone to refill the old unit with freon? Who can do this service, an air conditioning repair guy?

Thanks for your help.
Sincerely,
Frank Hamann
Orange, CA

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#2 midtenn

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 05:23 PM

Apparently someone has already added refrigerant to this unit if it has the shrader valves already sweated in ( They come from the factory pinched and soldered), so it must have a leak. Unless you have the training, equipment and at least a EPA Type 1 certification, you would be better off buying a complete refrigeration deck and just changing it out. Maybe you can get a little "core charge" from your old one from this guy who is selling you the used one. FYI, Auto R134 is not to be used in appliance R134 refrigeration systems because of the additives, but you can use reg. R134 in Autos. Just my opinion.

#3 caliwakeboarder

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 06:08 PM

it can be done, you could pay somebody to suck out the 134 and check for leaks and then refill with 134. it would have to be done by a professional because it needs to be weighed and its liquid that goes in. call your local refirgeration guys and ask. also at vending world they have rebuit units for 199.

#4 joebob051977

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Posted 26 August 2008 - 09:16 AM

I have a Dixie Narco soda machine that stopped cooling. I removed the refrigeration unit and the fans and compressor seem to be working good. The evaporation radiator barely gets cold. Can this be because of low freon? Is it worth the trouble to add more freon? How much does it cost to add freon? Can the freon cans from Pep Boys be used? This refrigeration unit has two recepticles that look like tire air inlets. Is this where I can add freon? Can I do this myself, or can only a pro do this job? How much will it cost to add freon? I found someone who will sell me a used working refrigeration unit for $175. Is this used unit worth it or should I pay someone to refill the old unit with freon? Who can do this service, an air conditioning repair guy?

Thanks for your help.
Sincerely,
Frank Hamann
Orange, CA


You are starting to dabble in the EPA Clean Air Act. You are risking an EPA fine of $20,000 per incident. You need to repair your freon leak before refilling your refrigeration unit with freon. No one will fill it without checking for leaks first. You can do it yourself if you have the EPA CFC Certification. The course is a take home class. I got my Universal cerification while in the military, but I believe it is also a take at home test. Once you get it, it is good for life. Keep your materials though. If you don't fill up refrigeration units often you will forget what you know. You don't want to ruin your machines.
Since I am certified (been a long time though) I would check for leaks, repair what needed repaired and then refill the unit. You will need a kit with gauges on it and need to reference your owner's manual to see how much pressure you will need to build up with your freon. Your resevoir should have it posted on a sticker as well. In cars you can take it slow and check the temperature coming out of the AC to see if you have enough freon in it, you can't do that in vending machines and it's not a great method. You will need the hoses with the guages on it. They aren't too terribly expensive. I hope this helps.