How to regas your car’s aircon in time for summer

Vehicle Air Conditioning

Summer is fast approaching, and if it’s anything like the 2022 scorcher, you won’t want to be caught without aircon in your car. As a rule of thumb, most vehicles permeate between 10 – 15% of gas from their system every year; and that’s before you’ve even driven it off the drive so most systems will need regassing, or refilling, every two years.
Regassing the aircon system is a simple process that you can do yourself with a few basic tools, some common sense, and a cool head!

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Check your car’s air conditioning system for leaks: Do this by checking the hoses and connections for any signs of damage or wear. If you find any leaks, they’ll need to be fixed probably by a trained mechanic before you can refill the system.
  2. Purchase a regassing kit: You can buy a kit from most car-spares stores or online from reputable auto part websites. A kit typically includes a canister of refrigerant and a hose with a pressure gauge. It is very important to make sure you choose a kit that is compatible with your vehicle and that you read the instructions before starting. If the refrigerant gas comes into contact with your skin or eyes, it could cause painful freeze burns so ensure you are in a well-lit and well-ventilated space.
  3. Connect the regassing kit: Locate the low-pressure port on your car’s system. This is usually a small valve located on the air conditioning compressor. Attach the hose from the regassing kit to this valve.
  4. Start the car: With the engine running turn up the air conditioning system to the maximum setting.
  5. Check the pressure: Read the gauge on the regassing kit to ensure the pressure is in the correct range. This will vary according to your car’s make and model so refer to your owner’s manual for this information.
  6. Regas the system: If the pressure is too low, turn the canister upside down and open the valve on the canister to release the refrigerant into the system. Continue to monitor the gauge until the pressure is within the desired range.
  7. Disconnect the regassing kit: Once the pressure reaches the correct range, carefully disconnect the hose from the low-pressure port.
  8. Test the air conditioning system: Try the aircon to make sure it is working properly. If it isn’t working, you may need to repeat the re-gassing process or seek professional help.

Cooly done!

Regassing your British car’s air conditioning system is a simple process that can be done in minutes. Make sure you follow these instructions carefully – and any additional advice supplied with the kit – and take all necessary safety precautions. As you whizz past over-heated motorists, or endure the usual motorway summer holds-up, you’ll be cooly smug you had the foresight to regas early. If you’d like professional assistance, give our friendly experts at Bromley Vehicle Test Centre a call. Happy motoring.