Need to buy new Condenser & Receiver Drier

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ptjs1

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Need to buy new Condenser & Receiver Drier

Postby ptjs1 » Thu Jun 29, 2017 4:04 pm

The recent spell of hot weather had made me realise that my 4.0 AJ16 convertible was not really blowing cold at all. A quick check revealed that the compressor clutch was engaging so I presumed there was at least some gas in there. The boys at Guy Salmon had a look this morning and advised that they could see the leak dye over an area of the condenser. With only 115g of gas then recovered from the system, I'm now in for a new condenser and Receiver Drier.

The prices of the condensers vary considerably, s I'm looking for any feedback from members who may have bought one recently. I can source a condenser apparently matching Jaguar part number MHD 7390BA from less than £100 up to £600+ (Jaguar). I'm not sure who were the OEM but I wonder if it might have been Denso?

So, in order of price (lowest first), has anyone got any experience of the following condenser manufacturers:

- Frigair
- Prasco
- Van Wezel
- Delphi
- Denso
- Vemo

I can get the Denso for about £240 delivered, so that's my initial thought, but would appreciate any views.

As regards Receiver Drier, I'm presuming it's a £35 job from Manners, unless anyone has any alternate views?

Once I've got the parts, does anyone know if, on a late big-bumper model, whether you can refit the condenser without removing the bonnet? Is it possible to remove from underneath with just the lower tray removed or else pull from above with the bonnet intact?

Tks

Paul
1995 XJS 4.0 Convertible
1980 XJ-S Pre-HE
Jaguar 4.2 Supercharged engine (but not with a Jaguar body..)

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poprivet

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Re: Need to buy new Condenser & Receiver Drier

Postby poprivet » Thu Jun 29, 2017 4:19 pm

David Manners are normally reliable:
http://www.jagspares.co.uk/Manners/Part ... perpage=10
Image

Many here like Jaguar Classic Parts, (club discount & pick up from local dealer).
1988 3.6 XJ-S coupe
'Remember that the value of your investment can plummet as well as fall'

ptjs1

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Re: Need to buy new Condenser & Receiver Drier

Postby ptjs1 » Thu Jun 29, 2017 4:24 pm

Tks Pop,

With Jaguar at about £550 even with my generous discount, and knowing it'll be available OEM, I'll probably only be using Classic Parts for the O-ring seals. I'm still trying to find out who were the OEM manufacturers. So far, the suppliers don't seem to know (or want to tell me..)

Paul
1995 XJS 4.0 Convertible
1980 XJ-S Pre-HE
Jaguar 4.2 Supercharged engine (but not with a Jaguar body..)

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Re: Need to buy new Condenser & Receiver Drier

Postby oldtimer » Thu Jun 29, 2017 9:54 pm

Paul,
From your list the name Nippon Denso I instantly recognised . I am very well aware that they are an OE Supplier of Air Con Compressors and used on several vehicles. I'm pretty sure my S type has one
As for the supply of condensers, I never knew that

davidr

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Re: Need to buy new Condenser & Receiver Drier

Postby davidr » Thu Jun 29, 2017 10:00 pm

Hi Paul - I think the condenser needs to come up and out - pretty sure it won't come out from underneath.
You'll need to remove the bonnet and then the radiator top rail. I think it just pulls out then.
XJS FORUM COORDINATOR
1996 XJS Celebration Conv. (shown on the JEC stand at NEC Nov 2015)
2001 XKR Convertible

Previously enjoyed!
1989 XJ-S V12 Coupe. 2006 XJ TDVi Sovereign. 1995 XJ6 3.2. 2013 XF 2.2d. 2009 X Type 2.0d Sovereign estate

ptjs1

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Re: Need to buy new Condenser & Receiver Drier

Postby ptjs1 » Mon Sep 04, 2017 12:12 am

So, 2 months later and it's been a rather protracted project...

I finally got around to pulling out the receiver / drier and the condenser. It's really quite easy to do with the bonnet fully intact and not even needing to undo the bonnet struts. The only thing I should have done differently was to disconnect the receiver / drier connections before undoing the clamps that hold it to the top panel. They were really tight and I ended up having to reclamp it down and then start again.
m_20170721_181221.jpg
m_20170722_183456_001.jpg
Anyway, once it was all out, the damp patch in one corner was very visible.
m_20170821_151146.jpg
Then the decision on parts began. Having rejected the idea of £650 from Jaguar for the condenser, I had to decide between OEM Denso at about £260 or pattern at £125. After talking with David Manners, they said that they had sold no OEM units in the last year but had sold 8 pattern units and none had been returned. So I decided to order one of those along with an OEM receiver / drier. I had to wait a while for them to get any stock in but the condenser finally arrived 10 days ago although they couldn't source the OEM receiver / drier. So I looked elsewhere and have bought a pattern unit for £30. But the problems have already started....

As I looked inside the very large box that contained the condenser, I could already see that the connections pipes were bent at 45 degrees to the norm, as you can easily see when compared to the old unit. And one of them has a significant bracing bracket which would need a lot of force to bend! The damage hadn't happened inside the box so must have occurred earlier in production / transit.
m_20170821_143951.jpg
m_20170821_143942.jpg

In addition the mount brackets on both the top and the bottom of the condenser are about 1/2" out of line each side due to poor quality in the way they've been drilled and attached.
m_20170821_145632.jpg
m_20170821_145141.jpg
David Manners have been very good so far and have ordered up another one with which they will then arrange to have mine returned and compared. I fully expect that I'll still end having to file or redrill the mount brackets on the new one but at least the gas pipes on the replacement should be ok.

In the meantime, the pattern receiver / drier has turned up and is 1.5" longer than my original! I expect I'll be able to slightly realign the gas pipes to get them to line up.

So, although I'm still a long way for getting it all done, it has sadly reinforced my long-held negative views on pattern parts. I should probably have stuck to my principles, opened my wallet and bought the OEM Denso part!

Next update when the second condenser arrives......

Paul
1995 XJS 4.0 Convertible
1980 XJ-S Pre-HE
Jaguar 4.2 Supercharged engine (but not with a Jaguar body..)

ptjs1

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Re: Need to buy new Condenser & Receiver Drier

Postby ptjs1 » Mon Oct 09, 2017 12:58 pm

So, over 3 months have passed since I first posted on this and the job is now finally completed!

Unfortunately, it took David Manners some weeks to get in a replacement condenser. They photographed the pipes and sent them to me. They looked ok, so they arranged delivery of the replacement and collection of the damaged unit. I then set about fitting everything.

As before, the locating pins brackets on the top and bottom of the condenser were not in the correct positions. There is no adjustment available so I had to remove the brackets, carefully file out the locating holes in the condenser top and bottom rails and refit the brackets. They have to be in EXACTLY the right positions for the the condenser and deck panel to be fitted. Very, very time-consuming!
m_20170821_145632.jpg
I then fitted the condenser and realised that the pattern receiver / drier (which was slightly longer) stood no chance of fitting as the pipes could not be adjusted to enable them to attach!
m_20171003_101351.jpg
So, I then ordered another pattern receiver / drier from British Car Parts who agreed to measure and confirm all the dimensions before sending it to me. That was received at 9am the next day and we started again. I had stripped and painted the receiver / drier brackets, sourced new packing strips and the pipe seals.
m_20171004_204742.jpg
This time it became clear that the condenser, although undamaged, has the pipe on the drivers side 1.5 inches further to the right. This makes it impossible to manipulate the pipe that fits on the RH end of the receiver / drier into the original position. With a late night call to David Randall (Tks David!) and careful review of my photos before disassembly, I could see the problem. As you can see in the second pic below, with the original condenser in place, there is just room for the receiver/ drier pipe to pass to the right of the condenser pipe next to the headlamp bowl part of the inner wing. This just wasn't possible with the pattern condenser.
m_20171005_105023.jpg
m_20170721_183657.jpg
So I then had to slightly bend the receiver/ drier pipe to get it to connect.
m_20171005_113155.jpg
After many hours, everything was back together, although I wasn't entirely confident that all the new pipe seals would necessarily be intact.
m_20171005_113202.jpg

However, at my local Jaguar dealer the next morning, they ran a 20 minute vacuum test and all was ok! With the car then regassed, my aircon is fully functioning once again!
m_DSCF1211.jpg
m_DSCF1210.jpg
So, what lessons did I learn?

- It's quite feasible to change the condenser without removing the bonnet or bonnet struts
- Remember to undo the receiver / drier connections whilst the deck panel and receiver / drier brackets are still connected. I didn't and had to retrace my steps!
- If you've got any wiring problems with your horns, attend to them whilst the condenser is out. The horns are much more accessible at this point!
- Take lots of pictures. They were invaluable in overcoming my problems and confirming the alignment of certain parts
- DON'T remove the seal caps from the receiver / drier until you're completely ready to connect the pipes. My helpful Jaguar technician said that after just 20 minutes exposed to the air, the receiver / drier has absorbed 50% of it's moisture capability just from the atmosphere.
- Get the condenser mounting brackets absolutely perfect dimensionally before trying to fit the condenser. Unless the dimensions are perfect, it is impossible to fit the condenser or the deck panel. I wasted lots of time finding this out, hoping that even 1/8" variance would be acceptable. It isn't!
- DON'T buy a pattern condenser unless you accept that you're prepared to do a lot of fettling with the mounting brackets AND bend one of the receiver/ drier pipes. In my opinion, the pattern condenser that I bought from David Manners is not fit for purpose. I have today offered my original condenser to them so that they can try and get better dimensions commissioned for their pattern part. They are also going to get a new part from Jaguar to do some comparisons. Steve Ayres at DM has been great in customer service and trying to resolve my issues.

The unfortunate thing is that I haven't been able to drive the car much this summer, so now I'll need to get the flying jacket out for my winter drives!

I hope that some of this thread helps other owners.

Paul
1995 XJS 4.0 Convertible
1980 XJ-S Pre-HE
Jaguar 4.2 Supercharged engine (but not with a Jaguar body..)

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J44EAG

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Re: Need to buy new Condenser & Receiver Drier

Postby J44EAG » Mon Oct 09, 2017 1:32 pm

Well done our Paul.

Having seen this job in progress, it certainly is a tight, cramped proposition.

Mike
X350 Co-ordinator

2004 XJR

davidr

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Re: Need to buy new Condenser & Receiver Drier

Postby davidr » Mon Oct 09, 2017 6:04 pm

Well done Paul !
I'm not sure I helped much really. I think it was more a classic case of you talking it through until you reached the answer than me giving any direct help. But, late night coaching is all part if the service! :D
XJS FORUM COORDINATOR
1996 XJS Celebration Conv. (shown on the JEC stand at NEC Nov 2015)
2001 XKR Convertible

Previously enjoyed!
1989 XJ-S V12 Coupe. 2006 XJ TDVi Sovereign. 1995 XJ6 3.2. 2013 XF 2.2d. 2009 X Type 2.0d Sovereign estate


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