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Old 11-12-2010, 01:47 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default A/C in a Samurai

Hello... I'm looking into buying a Samurai as a daily driver (daily commute is 26 miles non-freeway), winter driving and occasional off-road (no off road modding will be done). My 2 requirements are a tin top (I'm over convertibles) and working AC (and heat ) - I NEED AC that works since I live in a desert!

So far, I've found a great deal on a Samurai but the AC doesn't work and another great deal on one that doesn't have AC... I'm hoping the experts here can give me some advice.

- Does AC really even work very well in one of these rigs (tin tops)? Again, my daily commute is 26miles (12 miles each way).
- If it just needs recharging, I'm assuming it uses the old freon... so what does that mean to me?
- Can anyone tell me - worst case scenario what I'd be looking at to replace the AC system (if needed)? If it uses old freon... I'm assuming this would be more expensive...? Anyone done this?
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Old 11-13-2010, 07:45 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Since some came from the factory without AC installed, be sure to ask that question specifically.

I had AC in my '92, and it worked pretty well, though it sacrificed horsepower. And as you might know, the Samurai is not known for having horsepower in the first place. Honestly though, I would usually just put the top down instead of running the AC. The '90 I just bought doesn't have AC, so we'll see how much I start complaining when summertime comes.

Incidentally, the AC was very useful for defogging the windshield, since the defroster/defogger fan is usually pretty weak. The cool air defogged it a lot faster than heat. Good luck w/ the tintop search. There are still quite a few out there. Sometimes, finding the right Samurai is an exercise in patience.
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Old 11-15-2010, 12:40 PM   #3 (permalink)
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You can add a/c to any samurai. My samurai had the a/c installed as a dealer installed option. The wireharness is completly seperate for the a/c, and controls. plug and play my friend. But I couldnt tell you if they work good or not, never tried to run the a/c.
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Old 11-15-2010, 01:14 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I plan on getting a sammi or a Geo tracker. I will be following you're post\thread to see what you come up with.
As far as the 'sammy's aren't known for HP comment' I plan on replacing the tiny baby engine in either the Geo or the Sammy with a more beefy 4banger (insert lols here).
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Old 11-16-2010, 08:10 PM   #5 (permalink)
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The A/C in my Sami was weak at best and useless at worst. Mine was white.
But in fairness, New Mexico has heat enough to melt the plastic top and turned the windows brittle and yellowed. The seams seemed to let more hot air in than cool air out. It might be an oxymoron to hope that any A/C could work off that little 1.3 without completely stalling it out. They say the tintop Sami with A/C and added insulating (spray-on foam everywhere) gets cool (not cold) air when all conditions are promoting it. (parked in the shade with a slight breeze)
The A/C pump will not, did not, serve as a reliable supply for onboard air. (for me anyways)
The extra pulley is now used to drive my power steering unit.
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Old 08-19-2015, 01:40 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I know this is an old thread, but I would like to point out the air would get colder and a/c would run more efficiently if an electric fan were added solely for the purpose of forcing more air across the condenser.
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Old 08-19-2015, 11:04 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I added a universal 10" elec rad fan to my AC in place of the weak factory one. It's a tight fit to install it with PS but I installed it in my Sami ragtop, I plan to charge it with 152 and see how it rocks.
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