Only an MVAC-trained, EPA-certified automotive technician should service the air conditioning system or its components.
Avoid breathing the refrigerant and refrigerant oil vapor or mist. Exposure may irritate the eyes, nose, and/or throat. Wear eye protection when servicing the A/C refrigerant system. Serious eye injury can result from direct contact with the refrigerant. If eye contact occurs, seek medical attention immediately.
Do not expose the refrigerant to open flame. Poisonous gas is created when refrigerant is burned. An electronic leak detector is recommended. Serious or fatal injury may result from improper service procedures.
If accidental A/C system discharge occurs, ventilate the work area before resuming service. Large amounts of refrigerant released in a closed work area will displace the oxygen and cause suffocation and serious or fatal injury.
The evaporation rate of R-134a refrigerant at average temperature and altitude is extremely high. As a result, anything that comes in contact with the refrigerant will freeze. Always protect the skin or delicate objects from direct contact with the refrigerant.
The R-134a service equipment or the vehicle refrigerant system should not be pressure tested or leak tested with compressed air. Some mixtures of air and R-134a have been shown to be combustible at elevated pressures. These mixtures are potentially dangerous, and may result in fire or explosion causing property damage and serious or fatal injury.
The engine cooling system is designed to develop internal pressures up to 145 kilopascals (21 pounds per square inch). Do not remove or loosen the coolant pressure cap, cylinder block drain plugs, radiator drain, radiator hoses, heater hoses, or hose clamps while the engine cooling system is hot and under pressure. Allow the vehicle to cool for a minimum of 15 minutes before opening the cooling system for service. Failure to observe this warning can result in serious burns from the heated engine coolant.
All new vehicles are now equipped with an air bag system, often referred to as a Supplemental Restraint System (SRS) or Supplemental Inflatable Restraint (SIR) system. The system must be disabled before performing service on or around system components, steering column, instrument panel components, wiring and sensors. Failure to follow safety and disabling procedures could result in accidental air bag deployment, possible personal injury and unnecessary system repairs.
Always wear safety goggles when working with, or around, the air bag system. When carrying a non-deployed air bag, be sure the bag and trim cover are pointed away from your body. When placing a non-deployed air bag on a work surface, always face the bag and trim cover upward, away from the surface. This will reduce the motion of the module if it is accidentally deployed. Refer to the additional air bag system precautions later in this section.