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New Purchase 80 series: AC high pressure pipe fractured - HELP !

Samson77

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Jun 19, 2019
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great_britain
Hello... I've been a Classic Range Rover owner for fifteen years ....

But every time it let me down (frequently) I wondered about getting a 'super-reliable' 80 series Landcruiser.

Well I've just bought one - a 1993 Japanese import VX 4.7 petrol with just 98,ooo miles on her.
I've had it serviced, fitted LPG (with Flashlube for the valve seats), cleaned / treated / repainted all of the chassis and fitted a new stainless exhaust.

All good.

Drives great - just need to have the tracking adjusted and the wheels re-balanced. And looking forward to helping my daughter who works in Hong Kong restore a broken down old farmhouse in Italy.
Lots of space in the back (rear seats out / folded forward) and no problems on those long hot drives south. Not for the truck.

But for me and my wife there's a big one:
The AC doesn't work.

I tried to have it gassed - the condenser is rotten and there's a fracture in the high pressure pipe where its vibrated / rubbed on the rear engine bay bulkhead (it connects to the Evaporator inside the car under the dash). The pump may / may not work but that's replaceable. (Don't know about the AC lines to the rear evaporator which may also be fractured....)

I've bought a condenser and had conversations with helpful chaps who variously say:

* The pipe can't be crimped / soldered or sleeved because its too fragile.
* The pipe can't be by passed by installing a hydraulic rubber AC hose instead because there's no way of removing the nozzle (and O ring) at the end of the pipe where it connects to the evaporator and securely attaching it to the new rubber hose.
* The Evaporator is inaccessible (er - what about through the glove box?).

There appear to be two obvious alternatives to consider but both have inherent problems:
1 - Bypass the original system entirely with modern hydraulic hoses - but what about the connectors into / from the two Evaporators? How to source and attach the connectors without damaging them?
2 - Get hold of (seemingly) intact AC lines from a donor vehicle BUT how to install them in their original position with engine and drivetrain / suspension in the way?

There must be resourceful Landcruiser owners who've encountered similar problems - not least in the white heat of the Outback where AC is a must - so I'm looking for suggestions and inspiration from you guys.

Thanks
Optimistically (there must be a solution other than find another Landcruiser with AC working) yours
Samson
 

karl webster

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Welcome samson.
You will love the 80 im sure.
Cant help regarding the aircon. ill speak to a few people i know to see what can be done.
 

Towpack

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Some owners have retro fitted aircon (not a quick/easy job) so the fractured pipe can certainly be replaced but you have to lower the rear of the engine/gearbox to get access. Not as big a job as it sounds. I’m sure someone on here has done it but can’t remember who. Don’t know if the pipe is still available new from Toyota, you’ll have to get a part No. and try Amayama.com. A pipe from a breaker is also an option of course but I would have thought a pipe could be readily made up by an aircon specialist.
Is the engine the 4.5L straight 6? The 4.7 is a V8 and never fitted to the 80 series.
 

Beau

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I've damaged an AC line once on my 350z and had a local shop weld up the fractured piece and it held up fine. Is that possible for you?
 

hopeless wanderer

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Hello... I've been a Classic Range Rover owner for fifteen years ....

But every time it let me down (frequently) I wondered about getting a 'super-reliable' 80 series Landcruiser.

Well I've just bought one - a 1993 Japanese import VX 4.7 petrol with just 98,ooo miles on her.
I've had it serviced, fitted LPG (with Flashlube for the valve seats), cleaned / treated / repainted all of the chassis and fitted a new stainless exhaust.

All good.

Drives great - just need to have the tracking adjusted and the wheels re-balanced. And looking forward to helping my daughter who works in Hong Kong restore a broken down old farmhouse in Italy.
Lots of space in the back (rear seats out / folded forward) and no problems on those long hot drives south. Not for the truck.

But for me and my wife there's a big one:
The AC doesn't work.

I tried to have it gassed - the condenser is rotten and there's a fracture in the high pressure pipe where its vibrated / rubbed on the rear engine bay bulkhead (it connects to the Evaporator inside the car under the dash). The pump may / may not work but that's replaceable. (Don't know about the AC lines to the rear evaporator which may also be fractured....)

I've bought a condenser and had conversations with helpful chaps who variously say:

* The pipe can't be crimped / soldered or sleeved because its too fragile.
* The pipe can't be by passed by installing a hydraulic rubber AC hose instead because there's no way of removing the nozzle (and O ring) at the end of the pipe where it connects to the evaporator and securely attaching it to the new rubber hose.
* The Evaporator is inaccessible (er - what about through the glove box?).

There appear to be two obvious alternatives to consider but both have inherent problems:
1 - Bypass the original system entirely with modern hydraulic hoses - but what about the connectors into / from the two Evaporators? How to source and attach the connectors without damaging them?
2 - Get hold of (seemingly) intact AC lines from a donor vehicle BUT how to install them in their original position with engine and drivetrain / suspension in the way?

There must be resourceful Landcruiser owners who've encountered similar problems - not least in the white heat of the Outback where AC is a must - so I'm looking for suggestions and inspiration from you guys.

Thanks
Optimistically (there must be a solution other than find another Landcruiser with AC working) yours
Samson


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StarCruiser

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Hi Samson,

You’ve got a few possible problems so be prepared for one problem leading to another.

Find yourself a good refrigeration engineer, ideally a one man band who will work on car AC.

Firstly the rear AC can be blanked off if that’s what you want to do. Otherwise it’s search out the leaks and replace the pipes.
If you can separate the fittings and get them machined out to accept new pipe, then that can be fitted and brazed or tig welded into place. One way would be to have them taper threaded to accept a thread-to-flare adapter. This may be easier said than done though, due to the amount of metal needed to machine the thread into, but could be worth investigating.
By far your best bet would be to source guaranteed sound pipes from a breakers.
You will also need a receiver drier which must be the correct sizes of fitting.

The evaporator connections are accessible in the engine bay at the bulkhead. Just hope there is nothing needed on the evaporator side.

I would expect the compressor to have a leaking shaft seal. Search out a replacement, new is best and AVOID THE CHINESE COPIES. Get Sanden Denso or Nippon Denso with all the numbers matching from the very back of the compressor. If you’re good with this sort of thing search on here for ‘frankenstein’ and there’s a guide on how to rebuild the compressor if you want to change the shaft seal.

Once you’ve done what seems like all the leaks, put the car on vacuum. Ideally over night so the vacuum can dry out any moisture in the system and the oil. The longer the better. Then break the vacuum with dry nitrogen and a little puff of 134A. 134A is now hugely expensive, so the above method will enable leak checking without wasting a huge amount if you’ve got a leak. Once you’re sure you are leak free then you’ll need to put the system back on vacuum for a shorter time then weigh in the correct amount of 134A. Check the system runs and pulls in the clutch on the compressor as the pressure builds. Leak check again. You may wish to add a dye to aid leak detection but some fridge engineers shy away from this. A new compressor will contain the required amount of PAG oil. Cover any open ends as this oil is hygroscopic and you need to keep moisture out as much as possible.

If you get a good fridge engineer then he will know all the above.

Good luck and let us know how you get on.
 
Last edited:

tonytoyota

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Hi and welcome can you see sum one about the land rover thing.:laughing-rolling:
 

Samson77

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Hah - I found this old message and only just discovered all the great help and comments!!! Thanks to everyone who contributed... I've been sidetracked with a lot of other 'real-world' stuff so been distracted and hadn't the time to follow up this original thread / had forgotten about it. Started down the FIX track by buying new bulkhead pipe secondhand from Garry Rigby @ 80Breaker and drove all the way up there to have the AC fixed (with new front rad). He blanked off the rear pipe and pumped the system full of refrigerant but - no surprise guys - it all leaked away..... I will follow Star Cruiser's advice and find a fridge engineer and hand the car (and some big bucks) over to him - I can write reports but absolutely pathetic at mechanics :)
 
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