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Greetings! My first post. I've got an old Frigidaire which has been very relaible and which I would like to

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Old 09-09-2009, 07:54 AM
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Default Frigidaire-pinhole leak in freon tube
Model Number: D-11-58   Brand: Frigidaire   Age: More than 10 years   

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Greetings! My first post.

I've got an old Frigidaire which has been very relaible and which I would like to keep. Unfortunatly, one of the freon tubes (on this model, they are small, raised rigdes on the floor of the metal freezer compartment) was recently damaged and has a tiny, pinhole leak.....smaller than the period at the end of this sentence. The freon didn't come gushing out- more like small bubbles, one at a time. At that point, I shut the unit down and pulled the plug.

Question: What will it take to repair this leak and get my machine up and running again? Should I use expoxy or try to solder it? How much should I expact to pay for the evac/recharge work after it's patched?

I've posted this question a couple of other places and it degenerated into a "scrap it vs keep it debate" which doesn't help at all. PLEASE folks, could really use some tech advice here....surely someone has repaired this sort of damage before. Much thanks for any help.

-Mike


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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 09-09-2009, 09:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Classof58 View Post
Greetings! My first post.

I've got an old Frigidaire which has been very relaible and which I would like to keep. Unfortunatly, one of the freon tubes (on this model, they are small, raised rigdes on the floor of the metal freezer compartment) was recently damaged and has a tiny, pinhole leak.....smaller than the period at the end of this sentence. The freon didn't come gushing out- more like small bubbles, one at a time. At that point, I shut the unit down and pulled the plug.

Question: What will it take to repair this leak and get my machine up and running again? Should I use expoxy or try to solder it? How much should I expact to pay for the evac/recharge work after it's patched?

I've posted this question a couple of other places and it degenerated into a "scrap it vs keep it debate" which doesn't help at all. PLEASE folks, could really use some tech advice here....surely someone has repaired this sort of damage before. Much thanks for any help.

-Mike

Repaired many older u-style evaps where someone did the fast defrost method, as in with a ice pick. Not saying that's what happened with this one.

It may be repairable with a little luck. There is a epoxy for aluminum evaps. There are also ways to solder it with the proper torch and solder. That way can be harder. Once the hole is patched, a long vacumn on the system to remove any moisture that has entered the system would be necessary. A self piercing valve or soldered on valve would have to come into play. A soldered on valve would be better. After the vacumning the unit, it would need to be recharged with the proper amount of freon. Usually the faster the repair is done, the better.

If it got a lot of moisture in it you may never successfully get it going again without spending a inordinate amount of time cleansing the system. All it takes is a speck of moisture in the system, and when it gets to where the cap tube enters the evaporator it will freeze and cause a restriction.

In my opinion, it isn't worth the effort, unless you have the time, knowledge, and equipment to make the repair yourself.

A technician can go through all the proper procedures, which will be timely and costly, and a day/week later a restriction may pop up. Then it's back to the drawing board. You could easily rack up a bill that would exceed the cost of a new inexpensive unit, or a good used one for that matter.
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Old 09-09-2009, 05:30 PM
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My sincere thanks for the response. I know it may be foolish to put a lot of time/money into an older unit but I'd like to at least take a crack at it before kicking it out to the curb.

Do you know the name of the aluminum epoxy I would need? Would a plumbing supply house have this? Would my freon system already have the "self piercing valve or soldered on valve" needed or would this have to be installed? Best of my knowledge, the sealed system has never needed service before.

For that matter, I can't remember anything on this unit ever needing service before....they sure don't build 'em like that anymore, which is a main reason why I'd like to hang on to this one if at all possible.

As for how it happened, it was an impatient person (family member) who put a (metal) ice tray in without wax paper under it, and then resorted to "incredible hulk" measures to get it unstuck from the floor when it was time to get the ice cubes out. Kids, ya just got to love them...


Thanks again for the response, your time and expertise is much appreciated.

-Mike

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank / APP Team View Post
Repaired many older u-style evaps where someone did the fast defrost method, as in with a ice pick. Not saying that's what happened with this one.

It may be repairable with a little luck. There is a epoxy for aluminum evaps. There are also ways to solder it with the proper torch and solder. That way can be harder. Once the hole is patched, a long vacumn on the system to remove any moisture that has entered the system would be necessary. A self piercing valve or soldered on valve would have to come into play. A soldered on valve would be better. After the vacumning the unit, it would need to be recharged with the proper amount of freon. Usually the faster the repair is done, the better.

If it got a lot of moisture in it you may never successfully get it going again without spending a inordinate amount of time cleansing the system. All it takes is a speck of moisture in the system, and when it gets to where the cap tube enters the evaporator it will freeze and cause a restriction.

In my opinion, it isn't worth the effort, unless you have the time, knowledge, and equipment to make the repair yourself.

A technician can go through all the proper procedures, which will be timely and costly, and a day/week later a restriction may pop up. Then it's back to the drawing board. You could easily rack up a bill that would exceed the cost of a new inexpensive unit, or a good used one for that matter.
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Old 09-10-2009, 06:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Classof58 View Post
My sincere thanks for the response. I know it may be foolish to put a lot of time/money into an older unit but I'd like to at least take a crack at it before kicking it out to the curb.

Do you know the name of the aluminum epoxy I would need? Would a plumbing supply house have this? Would my freon system already have the "self piercing valve or soldered on valve" needed or would this have to be installed? Best of my knowledge, the sealed system has never needed service before.

For that matter, I can't remember anything on this unit ever needing service before....they sure don't build 'em like that anymore, which is a main reason why I'd like to hang on to this one if at all possible.

As for how it happened, it was an impatient person (family member) who put a (metal) ice tray in without wax paper under it, and then resorted to "incredible hulk" measures to get it unstuck from the floor when it was time to get the ice cubes out. Kids, ya just got to love them...


Thanks again for the response, your time and expertise is much appreciated.

-Mike
A local appliance parts house would have it. It's also available through this site. I've got pic's and a part #'s below listed for you that you would need. Some of the older units had a built in valve, but you had to have a special tool to utilize it. You'd be better off with the below listed valve, which would go on the low side( suction line or process stub). The filter drier I've listed has a valve built into it which will work for the high side.

Besides these items, you'll need a vacumn pump, a set of gauges, torches and of course some freon to recharge it. The freon part may be an issue. Most part houses will probably require you to show a refrigeration certification card prior to selling it to you. You might get lucky at a auto parts store.

If you have a buddy, or know someone in the business that would be willing to help you out, that would sure be a plus. Not to be discouraging, but if you've never attempted something like this it's not really a simple DIY project.



Part number: AP3554489

Part number: AP3554489


Part number: AP3537974

Part number: AP3537974


Part number: AP3515728

Part number: AP3515728
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Old 09-12-2009, 07:22 AM
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Frank- My sincere thanks again for all your help. I'm going to try to procure the needed parts locally today, if not I'll order them thru the site....with a little luck, she might be up and running again.

BTW, I agree 100% that this is not a project for a DIYer such as myself (I've been wrenching cars all my life but have never done anything to the fridge but defrost it and change the light bulb) but I've already had three techs come to the house (and spoken to 4 or 5 others over the phone) and all of them simply refused to work on my 'fridge, not because of the extent of the damage, but because it's "too old".

Nevermind that it's cleaner inside than most new ones, or that it was running perfectly until last week.....the minute I say "1958 Frigidaire" the conversation is pretty much over and done. A shame, IMO....those pre-NAFTA, pre-EPA, pre-"planned obsolencence" consumer products we used to buy had a level of built-in quality and reliability that we shall not see again.

I'm hoping if I can seal the leak on my own I might be able to convince a Pro to do the evac/recharge work. Or if anyone knows a good, old-school appliance tech in the vicinity of Yonkers, NY, who is willing to forget the "age factor" and just git 'er done, by all means post the contact info on this thread. I don't expect miracles, but I'd like for someone to at least try before saying it can't be fixed...

Thanks again!

-Mike


Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank / APP Team View Post
A local appliance parts house would have it. It's also available through this site. I've got pic's and a part #'s below listed for you that you would need. Some of the older units had a built in valve, but you had to have a special tool to utilize it. You'd be better off with the below listed valve, which would go on the low side( suction line or process stub). The filter drier I've listed has a valve built into it which will work for the high side.

Besides these items, you'll need a vacumn pump, a set of gauges, torches and of course some freon to recharge it. The freon part may be an issue. Most part houses will probably require you to show a refrigeration certification card prior to selling it to you. You might get lucky at a auto parts store.

If you have a buddy, or know someone in the business that would be willing to help you out, that would sure be a plus. Not to be discouraging, but if you've never attempted something like this it's not really a simple DIY project.
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  #6 (permalink)  
Old 09-14-2009, 05:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Classof58 View Post
Frank- My sincere thanks again for all your help. I'm going to try to procure the needed parts locally today, if not I'll order them thru the site....with a little luck, she might be up and running again.

BTW, I agree 100% that this is not a project for a DIYer such as myself (I've been wrenching cars all my life but have never done anything to the fridge but defrost it and change the light bulb) but I've already had three techs come to the house (and spoken to 4 or 5 others over the phone) and all of them simply refused to work on my 'fridge, not because of the extent of the damage, but because it's "too old".

Nevermind that it's cleaner inside than most new ones, or that it was running perfectly until last week.....the minute I say "1958 Frigidaire" the conversation is pretty much over and done. A shame, IMO....those pre-NAFTA, pre-EPA, pre-"planned obsolencence" consumer products we used to buy had a level of built-in quality and reliability that we shall not see again.

I'm hoping if I can seal the leak on my own I might be able to convince a Pro to do the evac/recharge work. Or if anyone knows a good, old-school appliance tech in the vicinity of Yonkers, NY, who is willing to forget the "age factor" and just git 'er done, by all means post the contact info on this thread. I don't expect miracles, but I'd like for someone to at least try before saying it can't be fixed...

Thanks again!

-Mike

Wish I knew someone who could help. Guess it's tough for an old schooler like myself to understand why someone wouldn't fix it. Money is money. If you're willing to pay me fairly for my time, and know the risk going in, I'll take the money. Wish you the best of luck.
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