Electronic Leak Detection
Good ventilation is necessary in the area where A/C leak testing is to be performed. If the surrounding air is contaminated with refrigerant gas, the leak detector will indicate this gas all the time. Odors from other chemicals such as antifreeze, diesel fuel, disc brake cleaner, or other cleaning solvents can cause the same problem. A fan, even in a well-ventilated area, is very helpful in removing small traces of contamination from the air that might affect the leak detector.
- Attach the R-134a Manifold Gauge Set to the service gauge port valves.
- Leave both manifold gauge set valves closed.
- Both gauges should indicate 413-551 kPa (60-80 psi) at 24°C (75°F) with the engine off.
- If little or no pressure is indicated, charge the refrigerant system. Refer to the procedure in this section.
- Leak test the refrigerant system using the R-134a Automatic Calibration Halogen Leak Detector. Follow the instructions included with the leak detector for handling and operation techniques.
- If a leak is found, recover the refrigerant and service the system.
Fluorescent Dye Leak Detection
Fluorescent Dye Detection
Ford Motor Company now produces vehicles with an R-134a Leak Tracer Dye incorporated into the A/C system. The exact location of leaks can be pinpointed by the bright yellow-green glow of the tracer dye. Since more than one leak may exist, always inspect each component.
- Check for leaks using a 120 Watt UV Lamp.
- Scan all components, fittings and lines of the A/C system.
- After the leak is repaired, remove any traces of leak dye with a general purpose oil solvent.
- Verify the repair by operating the system for a short time and inspecting with the UV lamp.