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Old 27-01-2015, 15:43   #1
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Topping off a Frigoboat R-134a using the packaged cans

I have a Frigoboat system that uses R-134a, but the fitting is a screw on type with a Schrader valve. I recently had a couple of leaks fixed, but our plate is back down to about 50% frosted. I would like to top of the system to just last a little while longer and try to find the leak.

I purchased one of those R-134 cans and hose/valve from an auto store, but the fitting is for the quick connect R-134a fitting not the screw on type.

I then found a R-12 to R-134a adapter from Napa (http://www.napaonline.com/Catalog/Ca...903_0483035103), but the pin that is on the screw on side is too small and gets mangled when I screw it on causing more gas leak.

Anybody know what fitting should be used?
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Old 27-01-2015, 16:34   #2
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Re: Topping off a Frigoboat R-134a using the packaged cans

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Originally Posted by ReMetau View Post
I have a Frigoboat system that uses R-134a, but the fitting is a screw on type with a Schrader valve. I recently had a couple of leaks fixed, but our plate is back down to about 50% frosted. I would like to top of the system to just last a little while longer and try to find the leak.

I purchased one of those R-134 cans and hose/valve from an auto store, but the fitting is for the quick connect R-134a fitting not the screw on type.

I then found a R-12 to R-134a adapter from Napa (http://www.napaonline.com/Catalog/Ca...903_0483035103), but the pin that is on the screw on side is too small and gets mangled when I screw it on causing more gas leak.

Anybody know what fitting should be used?


Don the NAPA adapter does fit the quick dis connect on the tap a can, YES?

For the NAPA adapter to fit on compressor you must remove refrigerant and then the valve core inside service port then quickly screw on adapter.

A much better way is to buy a 1/4 to 1/4 inch brass flare union at hardware store and screw NAPA adapter to union. Now find a standard R12 Red or Blue hose to screw onto 1/4 flare union keeping the end that is normally used to depress valve core free to connect to system's servicing port.

Before attempting to actually add refrigerant purge this new servicing equipment and follow the servicing instruction on my web site under Refrigerant Charge at Kollmann Marine
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Old 30-01-2015, 07:48   #3
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Re: Topping off a Frigoboat R-134a using the packaged cans

Richard, my understanding is that only licensed refrigeration technicians can work with R134a, among other refrigerants. Therefore you providing charging advice to an untrained person is not only illegal, but also irresponsible. This is one of the reasons the fittings are no longer available for over-the-counter purchase. Instead, you have to show your license to purchase these components. That the refrigerant is available in auto supply stores is because it is used in auto air-conditioning systems, which are a totally different beast than the capillary tube systems in marine refrigeration which work under high pressure. Maybe the laws of changed, but I wouldn't want to be the person responsible for another's injury do to the procedure being mishandled.
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Old 30-01-2015, 08:51   #4
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Re: Topping off a Frigoboat R-134a using the packaged cans

I'm still laughing....thanks for the entertainment Anna Sail....
Don- don't worry about being thrown in GITMO over the advice given by Richard.

We sell a charge hose that will connect to the standard r134a 12oz can on one end and your Schrader valve on the other with a gauge in the middle for clients to recharge their systems. But no need to buy from us, they are available everywhere for sale without a refrigeration tech license.
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Old 30-01-2015, 09:20   #5
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Re: Topping off a Frigoboat R-134a using the packaged cans

What Rich (and Richard) said. I got mine here:
Charging Kit - R134a [12-001] - $45.00 : Great Water, Inc. , Marine Systems

I wouldn't be surprised if Rich's is less expensive. We have a "no professionals allowed" policy on our boat and have never feared arrest because of it.
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Old 30-01-2015, 09:39   #6
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Re: Topping off a Frigoboat R-134a using the packaged cans

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Originally Posted by Anna Sail View Post
Richard, my understanding is that only licensed refrigeration technicians can work with R134a, among other refrigerants. Therefore you providing charging advice to an untrained person is not only illegal, but also irresponsible. This is one of the reasons the fittings are no longer available for over-the-counter purchase. Instead, you have to show your license to purchase these components. That the refrigerant is available in auto supply stores is because it is used in auto air-conditioning systems, which are a totally different beast than the capillary tube systems in marine refrigeration which work under high pressure. Maybe the laws of changed, but I wouldn't want to be the person responsible for another's injury do to the procedure being mishandled.

The Montreal air quality protocol signed by many countries was an agreement to as quickly as possible eliminate Ozone depletion caused by CFC refrigerants and over the next 20 years eliminate HCFC refrigerants to improve global warming. The US government passed our clean air act and then the EPA with the help of special interests groups prepared the actual regulations.

Anna Sail, your interpolation of our federal regulation as written is correct. Regulations as written are Abated by anyone meeting with EPA challenging a citation, then with the approval of EPA easing of regulation can occur. We are already seeing our government relaxing regulations on Oboma Care. I am not aware of how and why Federal EPA has considered allowing auto parts stores to sell 134a refrigerant or tooling for all types of refrigerants but they do. Information is available on refrigerant containers and servicing equipment for a DIY person to safely handle these products therefore the liability for use is between product manufacture and person using these items. Anna Sail local and state EPA regulations can be and sometime are more stringent than the Federal but not less stringent. Example I have four licenses from different schools and I meat all requirements for Florida and Federal refrigeration regs, but I am not licensed to purchase refrigerants in Dade county.

Deciding what regulations to enforce is up to the governing agency but we all have to reduce the venting of all refrigerants to the atmosphere.
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Old 30-01-2015, 10:23   #7
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Re: Topping off a Frigoboat R-134a using the packaged cans

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Originally Posted by SV THIRD DAY View Post
I'm still laughing....thanks for the entertainment Anna Sail....
Don- don't worry about being thrown in GITMO over the advice given by Richard.

We sell a charge hose that will connect to the standard r134a 12oz can on one end and your Schrader valve on the other with a gauge in the middle for clients to recharge their systems. But no need to buy from us, they are available everywhere for sale without a refrigeration tech license.
Just what I need -- how to buy from you?

Anybody know whether you can carry cans of r134a in airline luggage?

I can only buy it here in 1kg units -- way more than I need for my system.
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