Whether you’re a professional mechanic or a newbie trying to sort out some household problems, you might be familiar with the core of air conditioning units -the Freon.
Do you know what? Freon, also known as refrigerant gas, is non-combustible in nature that’s has an important function, no doubt.
Mainly used in cooling devices such as refrigerators and air conditioners, Freon can frequently go through the evaporation process to produce cool gas.
Ultimately, this cool gas results in producing a cooling sensation in ACs and refrigerants.
But wait! we’d add that Freon also has adverse effects on human beings and the environment despite its practicality.
Do you want to know how to recover Freon with vacuum pump?
Let’s cut to the chase and get into the entire process of recovering Freon.
What does Freon do to produce the cooling effect?
Originally Freon is present in the gaseous form that assists in the heat transferring process.
It swaps into a fluid by changing its temperature by running through the coils. The Freon temperature keeps on falling until it turns into a cool fluid from hot gas.
When the hot air passes through the evaporator, the heat is drawn out of it, making it way cooler than before.
What’s the Vacuum Pump, by the way?
Let’s make things simple and say that the vacuum pump is actually a compressor. Majorly, it does the function of discharging the gas at atmospheric pressure.
How does the vacuum pump do this?
That’s quite simple! The vacuum pump compresses the gas to reach the atmospheric pressure that has a lower temperature initially.
Why do we need to recover Freon?
As discussed before, Freon plays the most fundamental part in the cooling process.
But still, the question lies there, why do we actually need to recover Freon?
Will our refrigerator or air conditioner completely stop working without Freon?
No! it would not stop working; instead, it will result in a significant loss and severe damage, no doubt.
Your refrigerators and air conditioning units would still work with no Freon.
Still, it would no longer produce cool gas, as its evaporation process falls, or it would start to sustain serious damage demanding larger repair needs.
Another reason is that Freon is such a harmful gas, and it has adverse effects on the atmosphere. It is the major reason for ozone depletion.
Adding a little bit to your knowledge! The ozone layer is a barrier between the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays and the earth’s atmosphere.
Whereas, the depletion of ozone paves the path for those environment un-friendly cancerous UV rays.
That is why Freon gas is meant to be recovered rather than releasing it in the atmosphere.
The Freon recovery process!
The average cost for Freon recovery generally varies between $100-$300, depending upon the method used, type, size of the unit.
Though it does not take much time to recover, in fact, 15 to 20 minutes are just more than enough when using a recovery machine.
While in other cases time and cost increase or decreases vice versa.
Types of Methods:
There are typically two methods for Freon recovery. You can use either one according to your comfort and ease.
Let’s take an overview of both methods!
It is the most commonly used method for Freon recovery. In this method, the Freon gas is supposed to be removed from that same cooling appliance in a vapor state.
Later on, the removed vapor condenses into a liquid using a recovery unit.
After that, it relocates to the recovery cylinder -that’s all about the direct recovery method.
Let’s talk about the push-pull recovery method now!
This method involves the transferring of a large amount of liquid Freon.
Once the process starts, the recovery unit twitches the vapors from the recovery chamber.
It creates a high-pressure release gas while pushing the fluid out of that particular appliance.
And finally returning into that recovery chamber, from where it gets pulled.
Things you might need in recovering Freon
Trust me; you don’t need rocket science knowledge or professional equipment to recover Freon.
All you need is a vacuum pump, a manifold, a chest freezer, and a manifold gauge set.
The Process -Step by Step
Here we go with our detailed step-by-step guide!
Step 1 -Attaching the hose
First, attach the lower side of the blue-colored hose with the manifold gauge. Better if you connect the coupler to the vacuum pump too.
Remember to pay attention while attaching these hoses or else things may get complicated later.
Step 2 -Connecting the service hose
It’s time to attach the service hose that is yellow to the black hose colored (the vacuum hose) to the pump.
Step 3 -Evacuating the tank
After attaching all the above various hoses, you have to open the tank, vacuum, and low valves. Now you are supposed to evacuate the tank and the hoses.
Step 4 -Disconnecting the black hose
After you have evacuated the system, you have to disconnect only the black hose from the manifold.
With this step, you have to make sure that your valve is closed too.
Now all your hoses except the black one, are evacuated.
Step 5 -Placing the chest freezer
The next step is to put your chest freezer near the appliance; you are recovering Freon in. place the tank inside the previously placed chest freezer.
Leave the appliance overnight so that the chest freezer has enough time to freeze and the appliance has enough time to cool down.
Step 6 -Closing the lower valve
It’s time to close the lower valve and connect the lower side’s coupler to the appliance. Gradually pen the coupler and the lower valve.
While opening the lower valve, ensure that the pressure does not exceed beyond a set limit of R134a pressure at a set temperature.
Note the approx. value-150PSI.
Step 7 -Condensing the Freon
Performing the upper step will help in draining the Freon into the tank through the lower port. Here to mention that the Freon in the making has starting condensing in the tank.
At the freezing temperature, which is 0F, the pressure that has been left will only be 6PSI.
Step 8 -Placing the tank under dry ice
Now, place that tank under dry ice, better if you place it in a bucket filled with dry ice and after placing it, now you may put pack it into another freezer to slow down the sublimation.
It will ultimately lower down the tank’s pressure lower than 22’’Hg, even.
Lowering the pressure will help in recovering the Freon. So, when the recovery is made, close all the valves and your recovery is all completed!
Precautions, you must take in:
- Ensure that you are not performing this task in or near a crowded place since Freon is hazardous for human health. It consists of cancer-causing agents that may affect the lungs or esophagus.
- Do not forget to wear a mask, as discussed above that Freon can affect your lungs too.
- Wear insulating gloves to prevent electric shocks while connecting the wire.
- Perform the task with full concentration; a little negligence can result in a great loss.
The Bottom Line:
There we go with our ultimate guide to get some complicated things done -the recovery of Freon using a vacuum pump!
If you can’t spend a bunch of dollars for recovering your refrigerators or air conditioning units by acquiring professional services, you don’t have to worry at all.
You can perform this arduous operation at home by using simple methods -using a vacuum pump for recovering is the most practical approach, no doubt.
All you have to do is follow this detailed guide and get things done quickly.