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What advice would you give on a original 1970 AC system that isn't working. Compressor is turning freely.

Should the system be recharged with dye and check for leaks or just go in and replace all the original hoses and start from there?

Thanks in advance for your advice.
Chip
 

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Hi Chip

Just an FYI . . . . Have you read this . . . . great info about "mid - 70's Faxctory A/C .


I 'm really thinking of "dumping my stock condenser" ; and going to a " parallel - flow type" condenser.
Then, I'm also thinking now of keeping my 'POA valve' , also . I'm up-grading my 'old rubber
a/c hoses now , and have one of those "POA Valve Conversion kits (for R134) " but, I may not use it .

Anyway, I still have my a/c intact - stock - and, charged it up with R-12 several years ago - - - it all worked
& cooled . . . buy leaked out those rubber hose .

just FYI . . . and, keep us posted ,
Thanks . . . . jim
 

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I completely rebuilt the factory A/C system in my '69 a few years ago. If I were you, I would start by finding a reputable A/C shop and have the system diagnosed, as you suggest. Which parts you decide to replace may be decided by how original you want the car to look. I converted mine to a new Sanden compressor because my original compressor was shot, and I wanted to update to R-134A refrigerant. That required replacing the condenser with a modern "high-efficiency" parallel flow unit (under $100 from eBay), new 'barrier" hoses, and re-calibrating my POA valve to work properly with the R-134A. You can buy a rebuilt, re-calibrated POA valve or send yours out and have it done if you don't want to do it yourself.
Restoration - GM POA Valves | Original Air Group
A little more about POA valves:
About POA valves | Original Air Group
The link that Jim posted above is to an excellent post that explains the system well.

I hope this helps,
 

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Definitely have the system diagnosed by a shop that can handle A/C. You want someone trained or very experienced in automotive A/C systems. Get a good overview of what is and is not working in the system before stuff starts coming apart. It could decide if you go stock or upgrade.

I had a customer use these guys recently for an early condenser and they were very pleased. Price was decent as well.

 

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Something else worth mentioning, a lot of A/C guys today don't fully understand what the POA valve does, how it works, and why it's important. Many A/C shops will suggest that you replace the POA valve with an "update kit" that replaces the POA valve. They work, but they're usually installed as a shortcut instead of re-calibrating the POA valve. If you want to keep your car looking and working like original, get your POA valve re-calibrated to work properly with R-134A. It's not that hard to do. I did it myself, and I'm not an A/C guy. I just did some research and put together a simple kit with borrowed gauges. My system works great.
 
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