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What can I use to flush an automotive AC system?

Most vehicle manufacturers recommend closed loop flushing with air conditioning refrigerant as a flushing agent.  A benefit of this type of flushing is there is no danger of flush contamination,  since the flush agent being used is the correct refrigerant for the automotive A/C system.

Non-Approved Automotive AC flushes

Non-Approved flushes : Over the years many different liquids have been used as a non-approved flushes for A/C systems. The more common items are:

  • Alcohol
  • Brake cleaner
  • Carburetor cleaner
  • Mineral spirits
  • Penetrating oil
  • R-11, R-22, R-113
  • Gasoline

Automotive AC system contamination with liquid flush agents

The use of unapproved chemical flushes can result in damage to rubber components in sealing washers , compressor shaft seals , O-rings and hoses.

Automotive A/C compressor internal damage

Unapproved chemical flushes when mixed with the auto ac compressor oil , it will alter the viscosity of the oil as well. Any material left behind in the a/c system after flushing will dilute the lubricant and cause performance issues , increased compressor noise and premature compressor failure. If compressor failure is caused by non-approved flushing agent being left behind in the a/c system it can void the compressor warranty.

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