How to Replace the A/C Pressure Switch on a Chevrolet Truckby Don Bowman
The Chevrolet truck uses two air conditioning pressure switches: a high- and low-pressure switch. The high-pressure switch is designed to shut down the compressor if the line pressure gets dangerously high. This will usually happen when a condenser fan fails. The low-pressure switch is designed to shut the compressor down if the pressure becomes to low or the evaporator freezes. The oil for the compressor is suspended in the Freon, and if a leak in the system occurs, the oil, being heavier than the Freon, will be the first thing to leak out. Low pressure will destroy a compressor through a lack of oil, and must therefore be repaired as soon as possible.
Locate the high- and the low-side switches. The high-side switch is located on the smaller of the two air conditioning lines close to the radiator on the passenger side of the vehicle. The low-side switch will be located on the largest diameter air conditioning line or on the side of the accumulator (round container) on the passenger side firewall.
Unplug the switch by squeezing the fitting and pulling it straight out.
Remove the switch using the appropriate size wrench. There is a Schrader valve under the switch so no Freon will escape when the sensor is removed.
Check the new switch and make sure that the small O-ring is in place on the bottom of the switch. Place a small amount of refrigerant oil or Vaseline on the O-ring to keep it from tearing.
Thread the switch onto the Schrader valve and tighten it with a wrench, but do not torque down on it. It just needs to be snug.
Things You'll Need
- Set of wrenches
Don Bowman has been writing for various websites and several online magazines since 2008. He has owned an auto service facility since 1982 and has over 45 years of technical experience as a master ASE tech. Bowman has a business degree from Pennsylvania State University and was an officer in the U.S. Army (aircraft maintenance officer, pilot, six Air Medal awards, two tours Vietnam).