1998 Pontiac Bonneville Leak in A/C line

Tiny
QUEENOFA
  • MEMBER
  • 1998 PONTIAC BONNEVILLE
Air Conditioning problem
1998 Pontiac Bonneville 6 cyl Front Wheel Drive Automatic 136K miles

I would like to get the A/C fixed without spending an arm and a leg. The fan belt was re-routed bypassing the compressor to avoid burning it out when the leak was originally detected. I have read about several products."Cryo Seal", "Super Pro Seal', Keep-it-Kool's "A/C System Sealer", and Castrol/Johnsen's "Leak Stop" that professionals are now using. Which one would you recommend?
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Thursday, July 8th, 2010 AT 4:45 PM

8 Replies

Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
First of all thank you so much for the donation.I don't use any of the stop leak's a/c is under high pressure the only way to be sure to stop the leak is to fix it. In your case replace the hose you know is leaking. If you do it your self you will save a lot of money anyways.
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Friday, July 9th, 2010 AT 12:58 PM
Tiny
QUEENOFA
  • MEMBER
That's not an answer to the question posted! I have researched the products listed and PROFESSIONAL SHOPS ARE usying them to stop leaks when customers find repairs too costly or when the shop knows that another leak. Is bound to spring in the near future and they add them insure satisfied customers rather than have irate customers back. Saying why didn't you tell me I have a leak in another spot. I was asking for advice from someone who had used the products in my post. Shame on you.
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Saturday, July 10th, 2010 AT 1:03 PM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
Your right shame on me I was just trying to answer your question and I should have done some research on them before I tried to answer your question.I'm sorry iam asking some of the other moderator's what they think of the differnt sealer's.I will get back to you as quick as I can. Again I'm sorry.
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Saturday, July 10th, 2010 AT 1:31 PM
Tiny
BLUELIGHTNIN6
  • EXPERT
Hello and thanks for donating

I have used STOP LEAK on a few, a VERY few vehicles. It isn't that the product doesn't do it's job, it is simply that this is meant to be a temporary fix (most producst such as STOP LEAK states that it is intended for 12 months or less). It would be cheaper in the long haul to go ahead and repair the leak appropriately, replacing the hose in your case. If you do choose to use a leak sealer product, I would be confident in using the STOP LEAK brand for this leak repair.
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Saturday, July 10th, 2010 AT 1:49 PM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
There you have two differn't answers on the use of stop leak I hope this answer's your question I know it wasn't the answer you were looking for but I have seen the same thing if it stops the leak it is a ticking time bomb as to when the leak or another leak will happen. If you have ever seen or heard a dried out a/c hose pop when your filling the a/c system or after you have charged the system you wouldn't have much faith in those stop leak's ethier. Please let us know if we can help answer any further question's.
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Saturday, July 10th, 2010 AT 3:09 PM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
Hi everyone. I have a different take on things. The first reply by saturntech9 was spot on, but only for someone looking out for the best interests of the visitor to the forum. The answer just didn't go far enough. Queenofa obviously doesn't know a real lot about cars, at least air conditioning systems, and that is exactly why this forum exists. One thing Queenofa should keep in mind is hundreds of people will read the questions and replies while searching for answers to their own problems. Replies are tailored to the individual but have to include enough information to be useful to other people, or at least to not get them into trouble by following inappropriate procedures.

To get more specific, the belt did not need to be "rerouted". Nothing will burn out because the low pressure cutout switch will stop the compressor from running. That is designed to prevent pulling the low side into a vacuum that could draw in outside air with its damaging moisture. If the compressor's clutch is falling apart or seized, installing a belt for a non-ac-equipped engine might work but then we wouldn't be discussing a leak.

Of particular interest is the very way AC systems work. At the heart of the system is a very small adjustable orifice that controls the flow of refrigerant. It can be thought of as a controlled leak. Why would you want to add something to block that leak? Orifices, by whatever name various manufacturers call them, often become blocked by a small piece of dirt or a piece of rubber that has broken off from a deteriorating hose. If all that has happened so far is a hose has begun leaking, we are doing Queenofa a major disservice by recommending some "mechanic in a can" product that might prevent taking care of other potential problem-causing defects. What good is plugging a leak if the root cause results in a blocked expansion valve that requires part replacement and recharging the system along with replacing the original part, ... If it can still be identified? I can identify with cash being tight and the desire to postpone an expensive repair, but this temporary fix might end up causing more trouble later.

Now I have some questions unrelated to the inappropriate "shame on you" issue. We go through major pains to prevent getting any contamination in the systems. How does this foreign material know which bad leak to plug and which needed leak to leave alone? If the material responds to a drop in pressure, it is going to plug the expansion valve resulting in no cooling at all. If it thickens in the presence of oxygen in the air, why doesn't it blow away before it has time to set up? If it simply swells rubber parts, that won't cause blockage of the expansion valve, but won't it also soften the rubber hoses and make them slide out of the metal tubes crimped on their ends? And if that's how it works, what good does that do if a metal gasket, evaporator, or condenser is leaking. Most importantly, what happens when the refrigerant is reclaimed and recycled when the system needs service? Won't that contaminate the recovery equipment? Many shops use refrigerant identifiers before servicing an AC system to prevent that contamination and they will refuse to work on systems with anything other than R-134 in them.

When it comes to injecting this material, is the container under pressure or does the system have to be depressurized? If the refrigerant has to be removed first, a major part of the service is already being done. You might as well replace the leaking part and get it over with. When the system is properly repaired, does the material stay in it like the circulating oil or does it get recovered along with the refrigerant?

As a professional myself, I can't imagine using a product that would allow me to avoid performing a proper repair for my customers. If these were so good as an additive, why don't manufacturers include them as they already do with coolant, engine oil, and transmission fluid?

Caradiodoc

caradiodoc
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Tuesday, July 13th, 2010 AT 1:35 AM
Tiny
QUEENOFA
  • MEMBER
Just to let you, Fellas, know. This car does not belong to me and so I am unaware of the complete A/C history. I was going to have it repaired, if I could do so. Inexpensively for the owner(my oldest son) in gratitude for letting me use the car in a pinch. I had a few hundred dollars worth of other repairs done to it and I thought the A/C would have been a nice surprise, even if only a temporary one for this HOT summer. But $600 is more than I can afford on top of the other things (radiator flush, oil change, new water pump, new front bumper, front wheel bearing.). It guess a couple of ziplock bags of ice. And an open window will have to do. Thanks for your advice.
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Saturday, July 17th, 2010 AT 4:38 PM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
Your very welcome glad we could give you some very honest answer's on the stop leak subject. Also thank you for using 2carpros.
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Saturday, July 17th, 2010 AT 8:18 PM

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