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Old 05-29-2021, 12:06 PM   #1
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Dash air

My dash air on my 2005 Adventurer Workhorse chassis blew warm air so I took to get it fixed, they said I had a couple leaks that they fixed total bill $575. Does this seem high? Thanks.
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Old 06-01-2021, 09:40 PM   #2
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At $50.an hour that would be over 8 hours. Doesn't sound right to me.
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Old 06-01-2021, 09:41 PM   #3
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At $50.an hour that would be over 11 hours. Doesn't sound right to me.
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Old 06-01-2021, 10:59 PM   #4
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Who charges $50/hr.... Answer, no one.

The bigger problem is to know how the AC shop plans to fix your leaks?

Further, they can't know what they are getting into until they diagnose it. Did they? Diagnose it?

$575 is a starting price IMO. You can get lucky and it will only cost $50-$100 in materials or your AC shop will requote you $1,500-$2,000 after they diagnose it and tell you they can't fix it due to a major leak in the system.

Note: There are some pretty advance "stop leak" materials out there that cost $75-$100 with no promise of success or how long they will last. And this is a personal choice most AC shops will recommend against unless it is for their car. (Funny how that works.)

Should you decide to DIY, you can search www.irv2.com for my tips on how to evacuate your system and recharge your 134a.

Since you don't an evacuation pump you can go to Harbor Freight and buy the necessary tools... invest 4 hours of education... and maybe you can DIY for $200.

However, if you need a need evaporator or condenser then you are in the $1500 range.

I.e., $575 is the price if you do NOT NEED major repairs.

If it's any constellation, the same price would apply to a car.

If it was my 2005 Adventure, I would remove the PAG oil... replace the Receiver Dryer and TXV ... Evacuate the system... and put new PAG100 oil back in the lines... and refill with 134a... but only of your system holds a vacuum.

However, it's also true your shop can set everything up right for $575 and yes that is the going rate, if you system holds a vacuum.
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Old 06-02-2021, 08:23 AM   #5
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I would not say $575 is way high as the basic rates are pretty well set and Ford charges a $100 fee for basic diagnostics of any sort. Most reputable shops will have a basic schedule for any type of work they quote, so it would not hurt to shop around but I would not expect too much difference.
The old days of the shade tree mech are about gone. The last time I had a lower radiator hose changed it was close to $300 after shopping the price around most places. They had to pull the front wheel and wheel well to get to the hose!
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Old 06-02-2021, 08:31 AM   #6
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Total agreement with the DIY. Here is a deal on ebay that beats Harbor Freight. It includes a leak detector, the valve that attaches to the Freon can, a 1/3 HP pump, gauges, hoses... $138.41 Free shipping

Good luck
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Old 06-04-2021, 02:37 PM   #7
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Thank you all for the reply's, they put dye in system and found a leak that they repaired and recharged the system, looks like there is a new line on it. It sure blows cold air now.
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Old 06-04-2021, 04:15 PM   #8
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Most shops are charging $100 to $115 an hour if that helps
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Old 06-04-2021, 04:18 PM   #9
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catfish54: Where was the leak? How did they repair it? (I.e., what brand of leak fix did they use? How much did they charge? How long will they guarantee the leak fix will work?
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Old 06-06-2021, 07:26 PM   #10
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Your photos look exactly like my MH. I put freon in the system today, and got the compressor to come on but I am getting low suction and high liquid, points to a blockage, probably either the TXV, or the Receiver/Drier.


I have looked and cannot see the Receiver/Drier. I will look hard in the direction your arrow points to but if you had an actual picture of it and it's location, that would be golden.



Also, is there a throttling device that maintains pressure at the various rpm's our diesel engines generate? Is that part of the compressor?
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Old 06-06-2021, 08:32 PM   #11
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My guard goes up when someone says ‘multiple leaks’ diagnosing AIr Conditioning issue. AC worked for...what, 10 yrs without issue and suddenly springs two or MORE leaks! I don’t think so. After ‘A’ leak... the gas high pressure gas leaks out. They use a gas detector that can find the leak very fast. Issue is then getting to/ removing things to get to it to make repair. Not the RV but had a dealer tell me our car AC issue was because it had multiple leaks/ estimate was $1509-$2000! Suspicious, I went to AutoZone, purchased a $45 can or refrigerate w/ the pressure gauge, read the instructions, did what they said... that was four years ago... still working!
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Old 06-06-2021, 08:35 PM   #12
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I was at an RV dealer in Mesa, AZ during the winter months in 2020. I saw a sign that said the hourly labor rate was $140.00. So, considering this rate, $575 for a recharge or minor maintenance would be the "norm". On top of the $140 per hour, there can be "incidental costs", environmental fees plus shop charges.

Another issue with some dealerships is that they will only service a unit they have sold! I had a parking brake failure half way through a 3 week trip last fall. I phoned three RV repair facilities in the area and nobody could help me as they were booked 3 weeks in advance. So, I have found Winnie Owners and IRV2 great resources for a "DIY" repair. A big thank you to everybody that provides input.
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Old 06-06-2021, 09:09 PM   #13
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About 4 years ago I tuned up my Freightliner Dash AC system and it's still running strong.

Here's the link that will tell you how I did it.

https://www.irv2.com/forums/f26/tune...ad-403626.html

* You need to buy the equipment at Harbor Freight.

* Pick up the right adapter so you can dispense 134a out of the can.

* Try to remove the old PAG100 oil the right environmental way

* Change your Mercedes TXV and GM-Delco Receiver Dryer.

* Vacuum the lines, which means they need to hold negative 25PSI for at lease a few hours.

* Refill the the placard 134a weight + 10%.

* Verify your dash is -43 to -45F compared to OAT. I.e., if it's 90F outside, a very good temperature out of your dash vents would be 45F-47F or better, but not much better if at all.

Note: Don't perform this service unless it is at least 80F outside. And things go faster and your system will work more efficiently in dry 90-105F weather.

Job over. Cost of pump and parts ~$150-$175 and 4 hours of your time.

Note: Your receiver dryer should be replaced every 5-7 years. My OEM dryer was made by Parker, but you can use an AC-Delco type if you cut off the mounting bracket.

* Also, your RV system does not work quite like a car.

So if you are skilled with a car AC diagnostics, and you know how your Hi & Low pressures fluctuate with OAT, you can forget about using those numbers. Instead, this is what you need to know: IIf your High Pressure number is 4.5x to 5x your Low Pressure number, and you are getting -45 out your dash when the OAT is 90F-92F, then you did all you can do. And you did a good job!

* Last but not least, to fine tune your AC is a little be like playing craps. Just don't get lost in the effort or you may find your system comes up craps and you have to start over (from the beginning) and evacuate your system.

* That last picture is/was my old Parker Receiver Dryer. And that blockage is why my system was not working very well.

Note: Where there is blockage... one side of the line will be hot to the touch and the other side will be cold and probably compensating. So look for this.

==> I have attached a .PDF of my DASH AC Notes that will also be a good reference for you DIYers who want to learn how to fix or recharge your RV Dash AC system.

==> I also recommend you use WD-40 and then electrical parts cleaner to clean all those AC electrical connections on your firewall (above your generator) if you have a DP.

This includes that Bosch Relay, but if you use a screwdriver to pry the wire harness off, be sure you don't touch other pins or sparks can fly.
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Old 06-06-2021, 09:54 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catfish54 View Post
Thank you all for the reply's, they put dye in system and found a leak that they repaired and recharged the system, looks like there is a new line on it. It sure blows cold air now.

For a dye test, fully evacuating the system, replacing a line that failed the test and then recharging the system thats a pretty fair price.

Rubber o-rings and seals do fail and require replacing especially on the high side and they should have also replaced the dryer as part of best practice since there was a leak. Between the drier, line, seals, refrigerant and compressor oil you may be accounting for half that bill so perhaps 2 or so hours of labor there and $175 to $275 in parts/materials. What was the actual breakdown invoiced on the repair?
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Old 06-06-2021, 10:31 PM   #15
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I just got my 2005 Vectra 40AD dash air fixed at Tucson Freightliner. They diagnosed the system, got both front and rear hoses custom built and replaced. The total was $1100 with a shop labor rate of $159/hr. It was done right.
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Old 06-06-2021, 10:40 PM   #16
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In the pdf I attached to the thread above, I list the part numbers an prices I found in 2016.

Also, I forgot to add the price of the TXV and Dryer; and I have seen 134a go for $6/12oz can in some states to $22/can. Also, don't buy the synthetic 134a or the cans with any additive.

You can also find PAG100 oil with the "ICE" additive, in small 3oz cans at Freightliner. Walmart used to carry PAG100 with the "ICE" additive, but they don't any more. And this will add another $25 to your bill. (I highly recommend PAG100 oil with the ICE additive!)

So I'm revising your DIY price including pump to ~$275. But all future maintenance and "Top Off" some 2-5 years later will only cost you the price of one 12 oz can of 134a.

The first time you do this job, I'm guessing you will spend 4-6 hours, but after that it will take 1-2.

Note: It's a good idea to let your engine run on high idle for 10-15 minutes between any changes you make to your system. So don't be concerned if you don't get more than -30F out the vents until your system becomes "balanced." The important part is that you can feel the cold out your vents and from there it will get colder... up to -45F or so.
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Old 06-07-2021, 06:44 AM   #17
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The big question is did it fix the problem?
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Old 06-07-2021, 07:44 AM   #18
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One of the big things we tend to overlook is how each RV is used and how that changes what works for maintenance. If you drive it every month or so, it gets less wear than if it sets for six months!
On the AC end of things, the oil in the lines helps to lube all those seals and if we don't drive and lube those, they can dry out and need changed. So a fifty cent O-ring can take an hour to find and change.
That means DIY on the system is a definite gamble on putting in the recharge only to find you missed about half the problem and it is gone in six months. At which time many of us will bite the bullet to have it done right, rather than "save" so much money we have to "save" that money again so soon!
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Old 06-07-2021, 07:22 PM   #19
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Morich: By being "done right," can I assume you mean you always have to:

* Confirm you your system can hold a vacuum? ...And by default that means you have to evacuate the system?

* Or do you mean you should never use a leak sealant?

===

What's your secret for evacuating the old PAG100 oil? I.e., do you know how strong of a vacuum machine you need to pull that stuff out?
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Old 06-11-2021, 03:46 PM   #20
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I have looked everywhere for the Filter/Drier in my 2007 Winnebago Journey 36G. It is no where to be found at the front of the coach, and I haven't yet opened things up at the rear near the Condensing coil yet. Does anyone have the same motor home and know where the filter drier is located.



I have charged the system and it is working well, not perfect bur pretty good with 48 degrees off of the evaporator. I am sure it would benefit from a complete vacuum but really don't want to do that without changing the filter drier.
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