Kung Fu Maintenance Show shows you a couple tools that are commonly used to repair freon charge leaking schrader valves. KFM demonstrates the importance of wearing gloves and the use of the valve core removal tool to fix a bad refrigerant leak. The valve core removal tool allows the replacing of the schrader valve core without losing the freon charge.
I got two tool here, to show you. This one here, it’s got all the new Schrader valves inside the cap. This tool, you can use to tighten the Schrader valves. And this particular tool is used for replacing a Schrader valve without recovering all the refrigerant. It’s got this deal, here, that locks onto the Schrader valve, and it’s got, on the side here, a valve that you can close off, so you can take the Schrader valve out and replace it. Let me show you that, here.
Hopefully, this one, I can just tighten it down, to repair our leak, here. It’s leaking out a little bit. And, you just insert this onto the Schrader valve, and then twist it. This one seems to be tightened down all the way, the valve seems to be sticking and of course, I just made it a lot worse. That’s why you always want to wear gloves, because you can get frostbite, it is very cold.
All right, that one’s giving me a hard time, I’m going to have to use this other tool, here, to replace the Schrader valve. It’s even freezing the gloves. Okay. So, with this tool, you insert it on and tighten it down all the way. It’s going to be tight quarters, but you’ve got to do it… wow, the refrigerant really froze the gloves out. That’s why it’s good to — definitely important to wear gloves.
Now we’re tightened on there, what you do, is you insert the bottom of the tool and it’s got the same type of tool head on it, so you’re going to remove the Schrader valve from the inside. This is the tricky part here, it takes a degree of feeling for it to catch. To know that you’re actually pulling your valve out. It doesn’t want to turn, either, tight quarters. Got to get your channel locks on it and push it back. I’ll see if I can turn it out. It doesn’t want to budge, going to be a tough one. There we go.
Hopefully the Schrader valve doesn’t break, sometimes they do break inside, and then you’ve got to extract them. Make sure the bottom portion is screwed on enough, okay.
Let’s untwist it out, hopefully we got it. Now, what you do is turn the valve off right here; this’ll shut the refrigerant flow off. Then we can remove the bottom portion of the tool. Hopefully our Schrader valve will be inside. If we’re lucky, yep. There it is. So, there’s the old Schrader valve.
So, this tool allows us to replace the Schrader valve without taking the entire refrigerant charge out. So, there’s our old Schrader valve. Inside my other tool, we’ve got the new Schrader valve. And, all you do is insert this into your tool, like so, and then we put it back up inside, nice and carefully. This is tricky, because it’s tight quarters. Okay, tighten that all the way on.
Now we’re going to reopen the refrigerant line, here, so we can get past, with our Schrader valve, back up inside. You know, it takes a degree of feeling, for the seating of the valve, to seat properly. You always want to wear goggles and gloves, when handling refrigerant. Okay. Now we’re going to push it all the way up. Just gently feel for it, as we twist it in. Feeling for the valve, to seat. Feeling for it to seat properly. Which, it feels like everything’s going smoothly.
In hindsight, I probably should’ve replaced the Schrader valve when the system was turns off, so that it would have no pressure on the valve, but you get the idea. Just, we made it a bit more dramatic. But, also, you can feel what’s going on, differently, when it does have pressure by turning it off would minimize the amount of refrigerant lost, so that’s actually the better way to do it.
Okay, so I tightened it up as much as I could, there. The rest, we’ll have to tighten up with this tool, afterwards so, now, we’ll pull our valve back down. It does just not want to release, for me. Now, I’m going to go ahead and turn the system off, since we’re pretty much done in our…
Let me disconnect this way, we can kind of minimize any refrigerant loss, if there is any. Okay. There we go, it doesn’t want to let go of my tool. There we go. Sweet. Okay.
So, we got our new Schrader valve in. Try and give you a peek at what we’re looking at, there. And, now we can leak-test it with the bubbles. And, for further test, you can go ahead and start to put the cap on, and if you see any bubbles coming up, that would indicate that it is leaking. Tiny bit. Okay. Go ahead and tighten this down, with the tool. Okay. Still had a couple turns on it, there. Okay.
Now, sealed real good. Again, bubble test it. And, put our outer cap on. Again, looking for any bubbles. Seeing a little bit, there. Not seeing any more, though. That could’ve just been the air that’s in the cap, itself. So, we’re good, there. Now, I want to clean this all out with clean water. Clean off our valve, and our Schrader cap. Okay. We’ll tighten this all on. And, I’ll tighten it down a hair tighter, with channel locks. Got a little quarter turn past tight then we’ll bubble-test it again, to make sure. The high side and the low side. Everything’s good, there.
Now, I’m going to plug it in, so that it’s under pressure. It’s been about five minutes, so, it’s safe to plug it in again. And, then, I’ll go ahead and bubble-test it again, once it has pressure on it. All right, try our valve, and no more leaks. We’re good to go! I’ll go ahead and clean all the soap, off, here, with fresh water and we’re good to go.
So, that’s how to replace a leaky Schrader valve, without having to recover all the refrigerant in the system.
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