Date: Fri, 22 Dec 2000 23:32:45 -0500 (EST)
From: Ford Truck Enthusiasts List Server <>
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Subject: small-list Digest V2000 #214
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small-list Digest Fri, 22 Dec 2000 Volume: 2000  Issue: 214

In This Issue:
Re: [A/C installation for 91 Ranger]


Date: 22 Dec 00 22:30:42 EST
From: Tim Turner <>
Subject: Re: [A/C installation for 91 Ranger]

"Mark Biederbeck" <> wrote:
> After much deliberation, I have decided to keep my 91 Ranger 4x4
> (4.0/auto)IF and only IF I can install a/c into it w/o too much hassle.
> anyone give my any advice here?

I might suggest posting the question on

Warren Willingham or 'Nacho' can probably give you good insight or leads on
aftermarket equipment.  I haven't done a Ranger, but I've installed "OE
looking" aftermarket kits in full size Ford vans and it was straight forward
with no problems

> My thoughts are to try and get a complete
> system out of a fresh wreck.  I have plenty of mechanical/electrical skills
> so I'm not too worried unless there's something unknown that would make it
> real difficult.

Possibly some small parts such as the controller and/or vacuum harness might
be 'forgotten' when yanking the boneyard system but I can't think of any real
stumbling blocks.

> Also, I'm intending on using an R-12 system since they cool
> better (no environmental arguments please!).

No arguement on the environment side from me but I'll make some points if it's

a) Any R-12 system you find will be at least 6 years old; what's it's expected
service life?

b) Many Ford A/C systems of that era used teflon coated compressor parts that
contaminate the ENTIRE system when the compressor fails and conventional
flushing cannot eliminate and require replacing everything but the evaporator.
(Search for 'black death' on any mobile A/C discussion group.)

c) R-134a is not a bad refrigerant.  In a system designed for it, it works
well.  Retro-fitting a R-12 system to R-134a *IF*, and I repeat *IF* done
properly can equal R-12 performance up to about ambient Heat Index of 100F
from what I've seen except the initial 'cool down' is a bit slower.  The
misbegotten retro kits at (insert chain store) certainly won't equal R-12.
(pressure switches need to be replaced/re-adjusted and airflow across the
condensor is critical; check or replace the fan clutch, flushing the system
helps etc.)

d) Price differential between R-12 & R-134a; what's the cost to recharge when
a seal fails or a hose bursts?


> The situation I'm in is that I have an excellent truck w/ every option I
> know of except A/C.  I'm  now driving a lot more for work and don't want to
> go without a/c in July & August.

I'd suggest going with a new aftermarket R-134a unit myself unless you don't
plan on keeping the truck much longer.  If you're dead set on R-12 then you
could (possibly?) do it by draining the new R-134a's compressor oil, refilling
with Ester oil, installing "saddle clamp" R-12/R-22 fittings (from an
appliance store?) on the lines and readjusting the cycling switch to 28PSI
instead of 20.  Note that this would not be EPA compliant!  The R-134a
fittings should be permanantly blocked to prevent contamination of service
supplies etc...


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