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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 1999 9-5 and I have had it for several years. With the heat we've had for the past week or two I noticed that my A/C is completely out. Previously it was weak and would blow out cool rather than cold air, which I chalked up to "it being European".
In any case I was curious as to peoples opinions on whether those r134a recharge kits are a good idea or not? I'm a little worried about recharging the system since the air compressor was judged to be flakey the last time it was at the dealer (about 20k miles ago) and I'd rather not recharge it just to have it die on me and then require being replaced.
Thanks in advance for everyone's advice!
 

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Well, either way it sounds like you are roasting in your car. Me personally, I'd recharge and take the chance and not roast rather than not recharge to possibly extend the life of a flakey compressor and roast in my car......
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Well, either way it sounds like you are roasting in your car. Me personally, I'd recharge and take the chance and not roast rather than not recharge to possibly extend the life of a flakey compressor and roast in my car......
No kidding, black cars look nice, but they're a pain to keep clean and even more importantly they get super hot in the sun. If the compressor did fail; will that affect the function of the engine?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I thought if the compressor seized it would mess with the belts, or is this not the case? I'm just concerned about getting stranded in the boonies.
 

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The A/C compressor uses a clutch system to engage/disengage the compressor via the serpentine belt to cool the inside of the car. When not in use the clutch is disengaged and the pulley spins freely. If your "flakey" compressor goes bad the only thing you won't have is a cool car. Nothing else is affected.
 

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Not totally true. If the front bearing in the clutch assembly goes it will make a horrible sound and if it seizes up can cause the belt to snap. This from the pulley not spinning but the belt still going over it. I personally plan on adding freon to the system as its way too hot in the car to not have it working! Real question was what did the dealer mean when they stated it was flakey?
 

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Yeah, but that's a pretty rare occurrence and normally it will be squawking quite a bit before that would happen - at least, that's my experience. I would also like to know what they meant by flaky, as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Yeah, but that's a pretty rare occurrence and normally it will be squawking quite a bit before that would happen - at least, that's my experience. I would also like to know what they meant by flaky, as well.
Sorry flaky was my term, when it was at the dealer (when I first got the car) they immediately noticed that the compressor was squawking as you termed it.
We've had a couple of relatively cool summers in a row so I haven't needed to use the AC much but it looks like this one is going to be a scorcher.
 

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Here's the deal with your AC, the weakest links are your Schrader Valves, there are two of them and the part cost is about $2. The schrader valves are a typical "leaking point" and need to be replaced every few years, (they have a rubber seal on them). They're easy and quick to change with the right tool, (Mastercool makes a tool that allows you to change the schrader valves without releasing any AC pressure).
Once your schrader valves are replaced, you need to have your ac system put on an AC machine. The machine, typically made by CoolTech, evacuates your AC system, recycling and cleaning any existing freon, then installs the correct about of Oil, Freon and Dye, according to your car, and outside temperature. This service can run from $85 to $130 depending on where you go. Typically the service comes with a 90 day warranty, so be sure to take your car back to same place within the 90 day warranty to have them re-check your system status and top up if necessary. Service time to replace your schrader valves is about 10 minutes or less.
The cans of stuff you buy at the store, don't address installing the correct amount of oil, nor do they address any leaks....
There is nothing, "flakey" about Saab's ac system, it very similar to every other system out there.....I've read where Saabs "expansion valve" is easily clogged, so that may be a weak point.

I just replaced both of my schrader valves, (one was clearly leaking), had my system recharged here in Chicago for $85 and it's back up and running perfectly, ready for the scorching summer....
 

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Anybody Have pics on replacing Schrader valves, either with replacement description or at least showing where they are?

Here's the deal with your AC, the weakest links are your Schrader Valves, there are two of them and the part cost is about $2. The schrader valves are a typical "leaking point" and need to be replaced every few years, (they have a rubber seal on them). They're easy and quick to change with the right tool, (Mastercool makes a tool that allows you to change the schrader valves without releasing any AC pressure).
Once your schrader valves are replaced, you need to have your ac system put on an AC machine. The machine, typically made by CoolTech, evacuates your AC system, recycling and cleaning any existing freon, then installs the correct about of Oil, Freon and Dye, according to your car, and outside temperature. This service can run from $85 to $130 depending on where you go. Typically the service comes with a 90 day warranty, so be sure to take your car back to same place within the 90 day warranty to have them re-check your system status and top up if necessary. Service time to replace your schrader valves is about 10 minutes or less.
The cans of stuff you buy at the store, don't address installing the correct amount of oil, nor do they address any leaks....
There is nothing, "flakey" about Saab's ac system, it very similar to every other system out there.....I've read where Saabs "expansion valve" is easily clogged, so that may be a weak point.

I just replaced both of my schrader valves, (one was clearly leaking), had my system recharged here in Chicago for $85 and it's back up and running perfectly, ready for the scorching summer....
 

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Shows how to use the tool I was talking about to change your schrader valves without losing AC pressure:
(the tool might be available to rent at a local chain parts store)

http://youtu.be/Cfm6m01FfeI

To find where your schrader valves are, just go to eEuroparts.com and do a search for AC parts, you will see an option to view a diagram, it's all there...
 

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Thanks for the link to the video! Makes it look easy. Now on my 99 9-5 2.3l I need to find the valves. I can locate 1 on the right hand side that has a green cap with a tag saying for evap service. But can't locate any others. Where should I be looking?
 

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The valve with the Green Evap tag is not what you should be looking for, I'm not exactly sure what that's for, but it's not for recharging your system. Have a look at the diagram. The arrow labeled, "2" did not exist on my car, (2003 9-5 2.3T). #1 and #3 where there....

 

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on the 99 the low pressure is behind the passenger side headlight, you need to take the headlight out.

the high pressure is behind the grille, just next to the drivers headlight. The grille has to come out to get that one. (but it has to come out to get the other headlight out anyway)
 

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Found the high pressure one. I can take a cover off above the grill and access it. Still haven't located the low side port yet but if it's behind the headlight it would make sense that I haven't found it yet. I do see some piping going up in that area so I guess I have to look harder.
 

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Best photos i have seen that illustrate locations of service ports, my compliments, nice work !
What is the use of the service port...the one with the Green tag? The port is tiny and none of the hoses will fit on it....
Mine has a tag on it that states its for the EVAP system.
 
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