'99 XJ Heater core / Evaporator Swap - Quick ??'s - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 3 Old 10-30-2013, 11:48 AM Thread Starter
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1999 XJ Cherokee 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Nashua, New Hampshire
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'99 XJ Heater core / Evaporator Swap - Quick ??'s

I've done some research here on swapping out my heater core (getting fogged windows on interior with heat on real bad). When I remove the heater core, here are a few questions I have not been able to get answers to from other threads-

1- Passenger Airbag- Does the dash-mounted passenger airbag have to come out, or does this stay mounted in the upper dash, and this doesn't have to be removed? (I know wiring harnesses will most likely need to be unclipped, etc, and disco the battery before working on this... yeah... got that, but wanted to know if I had remove this airbag or not).

2- A/C Evaporator- While I have everything opened up and dash removed, I want to swap the evaporator core too (seen lots of comments about how they suck from the factory, and currently A/C doesn't work but did last month, so hoping to fix any possible leak with new evap core for cheap money)- Do this headache of a job only once. To completely remove the heater box from the firewall, I know I need to disconnect the heater core from the coolant lines, and the A/C lines from the evaporator- BUT, from what I gather as a semi-conscious human being, I need to get the A/C system property emptied as to reclaim the R132a legally before I crack open the A/C lines. No where have I heard anyone mention this step in any threads- Can someone validate this for me as well? I assume the evaporator has R132a in it, unless there is something I am missing and it's filled with magic or something else??

3- Once I button everything back up, is is possible for me to get the A/C system back in working order on my own with a rental of a vacuum pump, and a few cans of R132a, or does the pressurization process HAVE to be done with all the equipment at a service center?

Any other quick helpful comments appreciated to help make this crummy job any easier would be great!!


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post #2 of 3 Old 10-30-2013, 01:27 PM
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1999 XJ Cherokee 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: ohio
Posts: 65
You will need to discharge the a/c. How you choose to do that is up to you. You also do not need to remove the passenger side airbag. Disconnect the battery, and as you remove parts of the dash, you will eventually unplug the connectors for the airbag. I replaced my cores this past February. It took about 11 hours. No special tools, just remove the front seats and keep track of the screws. Pretty easy.
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post #3 of 3 Old 10-30-2013, 05:08 PM
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1996 XJ Cherokee 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Gurnee
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Dont waste your time trying to fill the A/C system yourself if you dont have the right equipment. Using cans from the auto parts store isnt a good way to recharge the system. If you dont have a set of A/C system pressure gauges and/or dont know how to read them, chances are you wont get the proper charge. Save yourself the headache and take it to a mechanic to recharge the A/C. If you want to test the system to make sure the leak is fixed and the compressor works as well as blows cold air, you could use one or more of those cans to put a small charge in just to make sure it everything works OK. I dont know how much freon comes in one of those cans, but youll want to put 1LBS of refridgerant into the system. That should be enough to get the compressor to cycle and not overcharge the system. If something doesnt work, atleast you didnt waste $100-$150 on a complete recharge.

1996 Jeep Cherokee- Project-- Rusty's 8in long arm, SYE kit, Teraflex driveshaft, Cragar soft 8's 15x10 with 33x12.5 Firestone Destination MT's, Eaton Tru Trac in the front
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evaporator , heater core , replace , swap

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