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The Detailed E30 R-134a Conversion Thread/DIY

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    Is this the correct SPAL fan if i wish to ditch the factory condenser fan for an upgraded one?

    Model: SPAL VA10-AP50/C-61A

    If it is not correct, id appreciate the correct one. Looking for as close to bolt on as OE/OEM. Or is the factory fan enough with the upgraded condenser?

    Comment


      Originally posted by cory58 View Post
      What's the temp coming out the vents?
      I知 getting a steady 56コ at highway speeds in 90コ weather. I drove through a thunderstorm and briefly got a vent temp of 39コ.

      I have to say a huge thank you to all the people that have contributed to this thread. The parallel flow condenser and the spal fan made my car available to me in the hot months, completely comfortable in my South Carolina climate. I get pretty grumpy when I cant drive my car.

      Next thing I知 going to do is get my windows coated with ceramic film. You know, the kind that has zero tint but blocks UV. I should get it done in the next couple of weeks and I think it will really help, just as much as functioning A/C.
      My son has the 1987 325e, 2 door, 5speed
      I daily the 1989 325i, 4 door, 5speed

      Comment


        Originally posted by S.J.1981 View Post
        Is this the correct SPAL fan if i wish to ditch the factory condenser fan for an upgraded one?

        Model: SPAL VA10-AP50/C-61A

        If it is not correct, id appreciate the correct one. Looking for as close to bolt on as OE/OEM. Or is the factory fan enough with the upgraded condenser?
        This is the one that I was advised to get, it works great. A little loud, but cool A/C is worth it.

        https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

        Using the basic Hayden Automotive fan mounting kit I re used the factory rubber grommets from the original fan, cut some fuel hose to fill the gaps, drilled holes in the fan walls, and pulled the mounting zip ties through. Secure and no vibrations.

        Last edited by 325e '87; 07-29-2019, 02:55 PM. Reason: Added mounting pic
        My son has the 1987 325e, 2 door, 5speed
        I daily the 1989 325i, 4 door, 5speed

        Comment


          Originally posted by 325e '87 View Post
          This is the one that I was advised to get, it works great. A little loud, but cool A/C is worth it.

          https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

          Using the basic Hayden Automotive fan mounting kit I re used the factory rubber grommets from the original fan, cut some fuel hose to fill the gaps, drilled holes in the fan walls, and pulled the mounting zip ties through. Secure and no vibrations.

          Thank you, that SPAL 30100382 is also named SPAL VA08-AP10/ C-23S here in Germany. Sadly i already finished up the A/C system in the engine bay yesterday (condenser replaced, all hoses flushed, new o-rings, new drier/receiver, drained compressor and filled with fresh oil).

          Will be tackling the expansion valve and evap today, but im glad to know which model to get incase i realize that the fan needs to be upgraded, would be easier to remove the bumper and replace the fan than re-do everything again.

          Do you maybe have a model/part number for that mounting kit as well? we may have it here too!

          Comment


            Originally posted by 325e '87 View Post
            I知 getting a steady 56コ at highway speeds in 90コ weather. I drove through a thunderstorm and briefly got a vent temp of 39コ.

            I have to say a huge thank you to all the people that have contributed to this thread. The parallel flow condenser and the spal fan made my car available to me in the hot months, completely comfortable in my South Carolina climate. I get pretty grumpy when I cant drive my car.

            Next thing I知 going to do is get my windows coated with ceramic film. You know, the kind that has zero tint but blocks UV. I should get it done in the next couple of weeks and I think it will really help, just as much as functioning A/C.

            Glad you're happy with it. If the car's been baking in the sun at 90 degrees, then 56 out the vents is good. Enjoy your year-round E30!
            1992 325i 'vert
            1988 320i Touring
            1977 530i
            2015 328i - Euro Delivery/Performance Center Delivery
            2001 325i - R.I.P.
            BMWCCA
            E30CCA

            Comment


              Originally posted by 325e '87 View Post
              I知 getting a steady 56コ at highway speeds in 90コ weather. I drove through a thunderstorm and briefly got a vent temp of 39コ.
              Originally posted by cory58 View Post
              Glad you're happy with it. If the car's been baking in the sun at 90 degrees, then 56 out the vents is good. Enjoy your year-round E30!
              Does E30 AC just suck? Should be able to get down to 40 at highway speeds with accompanying engine RPM.

              Comment


                You can't judge the system by absolute temps. It's the differential which is a measure only of its ability to remove btus AND humidity. If it keeps you comfortable it's working..
                Deck Lid and soft top Shocks on hand

                Seat shocks on hand for immediate shipment
                https://www.r3vlimited.com/board/sho...86#post4944786
                Alice the Time Capsule
                http://www.r3vlimited.com/board/showthread.php?t=360504
                87 Zinno Cabrio barn find 98k and still smells like a barn. Build thread http://www.r3vlimited.com/board/show...20#post3455220

                Comment


                  You *CAN* judge by absolute temps. That's why the "recirculate" function exists. The heat load from ambient air passing over the outside of the car, radiator air passing underneath the car and solar radiation through the windows is enough for the A/C to fight. Trying to get it to do all that *AND* cool down outside air is not a recipe for great results.

                  Comment


                    I have 55-58 degree results and while it *eventually* cools the cab I personally consider this conversation a failure. Vent temps should be in the 40s consistently for a properly functioning setup.

                    I am going to try a Sanden compressor next. Or something similar.

                    Comment


                      Originally posted by Garemie View Post
                      I have 55-58 degree results and while it *eventually* cools the cab I personally consider this conversation a failure. Vent temps should be in the 40s consistently for a properly functioning setup.

                      I am going to try a Sanden compressor next. Or something similar.
                      Exactly. If 55 degree discharge temp is the best the system can do, something is wrong. For an R12 system, evaporator temperature in F and low side pressure in PSI are approximately equal. R-134 isn't far off that.

                      Comment


                        Originally posted by The Dark Side of Will View Post
                        You *CAN* judge by absolute temps. That's why the "recirculate" function exists. The heat load from ambient air passing over the outside of the car, radiator air passing underneath the car and solar radiation through the windows is enough for the A/C to fight. Trying to get it to do all that *AND* cool down outside air is not a recipe for great results.
                        Yes and no. Of course for a rapid cool down/dehumidification recirc helps a lot since youre continuously cooling the same air repeatedly and hopefully faster than the heat load can add btus (assuming everything is closed). This isn't a bad "bench test" for efficiency but you have to also consider how long it takes to get to whatever minimum temperature it's capable or reaching. The problem is, I've rarely if ever seen an infrared posting explain the variables present...ie humidity, flap position, moving or not, rpms, humidity and ambient temp. If your cooling 90 degree air with a 20 degree differential eventually you should reach the "absolute minimum" but It's still just a 20 degree differential. This will take longer and have a harder time maintaining comfort in real world driving.

                        If you're driving in 90 degree weather with a 35 degree differential and 85% humidity but your absolute minimum is 53 (like my cabrio) you'll cool down faster (very fast in fact) and wind up turning down your fan and/or temp setting sooner since most people are quite happy somewhere between 68-74.

                        Absolute minimum is great for theory and bragging rights but IMO is not an expression of overall performance.

                        My2c
                        Deck Lid and soft top Shocks on hand

                        Seat shocks on hand for immediate shipment
                        https://www.r3vlimited.com/board/sho...86#post4944786
                        Alice the Time Capsule
                        http://www.r3vlimited.com/board/showthread.php?t=360504
                        87 Zinno Cabrio barn find 98k and still smells like a barn. Build thread http://www.r3vlimited.com/board/show...20#post3455220

                        Comment


                          Finally mounted up everything, new condenser (parallel flow), new o-rings, all lines/pipe(s) removed and cleaned, new drier, pressure switch, compressor cleaned out, fresh oil, expansion valve etc.

                          Plugged in the new vacuum pump and lines, barely held 10hg vacuum. Checked around and found the adaptor not sealing correctly on the high side. Then found out that there is no vacuum pulled by the pump from the low side. Turns out to be a faulty connector (the one you press to slide into the low side).

                          No matter which R134a adapter i used on the R12 lines, it never sealed correctly.


                          Decided to return the whole pump w/hoses back and get a refund, will go to a shop to have them find the correct adaptor and leak/vacuum test the system for me. If all is well, i have 900g of R134a, will let them fill the system as well.

                          Comment


                            Originally posted by jeffnhiscars View Post
                            Yes and no. Of course for a rapid cool down/dehumidification recirc helps a lot since youre continuously cooling the same air repeatedly and hopefully faster than the heat load can add btus (assuming everything is closed). This isn't a bad "bench test" for efficiency but you have to also consider how long it takes to get to whatever minimum temperature it's capable or reaching. The problem is, I've rarely if ever seen an infrared posting explain the variables present...ie humidity, flap position, moving or not, rpms, humidity and ambient temp. If your cooling 90 degree air with a 20 degree differential eventually you should reach the "absolute minimum" but It's still just a 20 degree differential. This will take longer and have a harder time maintaining comfort in real world driving.

                            If you're driving in 90 degree weather with a 35 degree differential and 85% humidity but your absolute minimum is 53 (like my cabrio) you'll cool down faster (very fast in fact) and wind up turning down your fan and/or temp setting sooner since most people are quite happy somewhere between 68-74.

                            Absolute minimum is great for theory and bragging rights but IMO is not an expression of overall performance.

                            My2c
                            If your evaporator is at 52 degrees and you push XYZ CFM of air through it for a 53 degree discharge, then you're not pulling as many BTUs out of the air as you would if the evaporator were at 40 degrees and you pushed the same CFM at the same ambient temperature through it.

                            Comment


                              Again yes and no since it's apples and oranges. I don't recall anyone ever indicating their blower speed so we have no cfm data. A few other factors which IMO make absolute temp even less relevant are:

                              humidity..you heat water to create vapor and when it condenses back to water it sheds btus in large amounts. Since that happens in your evaporator, your 40 which may be in Phoenix where's there's zero humidity to overcome , is not out performing my 53 in Florida where the humidity is 110%. Ask anyone in the hvac industry and they will tell you humidity is actually more critical to comfort than temperature.

                              The colder you get the less efficient the system will move btus since there are fewer of them remaining. This is why heat pumps which are just AC in reverse have back up electric for when temps start dropping.

                              Rpms plus speed over ground determine compressor speed and air flow through the condenser. I don't see many of those figures.

                              You can't drive for long on recirc for long and stay comfortable so that scenario doesn't help over time

                              Put 2 cars side by side and go for a ride with a pair of infrareds then you may get good comparative data, but going online and saying "mine is bigger than yours"...not so much :)
                              Last edited by jeffnhiscars; 08-01-2019, 01:43 PM.
                              Deck Lid and soft top Shocks on hand

                              Seat shocks on hand for immediate shipment
                              https://www.r3vlimited.com/board/sho...86#post4944786
                              Alice the Time Capsule
                              http://www.r3vlimited.com/board/showthread.php?t=360504
                              87 Zinno Cabrio barn find 98k and still smells like a barn. Build thread http://www.r3vlimited.com/board/show...20#post3455220

                              Comment


                                Originally posted by jeffnhiscars View Post
                                Again yes and no since it's apples and oranges. I don't recall anyone ever indicating their blower speed so we have no cfm data. A few other factors which IMO make absolute temp even less relevant are:

                                humidity..you heat water to create vapor and when it condenses back to water it sheds btus in large amounts. Since that happens in your evaporator, your 40 which may be in Phoenix where's there's zero humidity to overcome , is not out performing my 53 in Florida where the humidity is 110%. Ask anyone in the hvac industry and they will tell you humidity is actually more critical to comfort than temperature.

                                The colder you get the less efficient the system will move btus since there are fewer of them remaining. This is why heat pumps which are just AC in reverse have back up electric for when temps start dropping.

                                Rpms plus speed over ground determine compressor speed and air flow through the condenser. I don't see many of those figures.

                                You can't drive for long on recirc for long and stay comfortable so that scenario doesn't help over time

                                Put 2 cars side by side and go for a ride with a pair of infrareds then you may get good comparative data, but going online and saying "mine is bigger than yours"...not so much :)
                                :roll:

                                I've already specified all of those variables to the required precision for this discussion.

                                In my last comment I was quite obviously talking about E30 systems, so CFM is a constant across the two options because it's the blower speed that E30's run. Regardless, automotive AC systems are engineered to be effective. Since there are only so many ways to skin a cat, blower flow isn't going to vary much across the industry. Not even Rolls Royce runs 5000 CFM A/C blowers.

                                We all know that older BMW systems do kind of suck at low speed and low engine RPM, but reading back a few posts, in fact, my third post above to which you directly responded, I specified highway speed to this incipient hypothetical situation. That gets vehicle speed, engine RPM and condenser airflow high enough to be effective. The exact number is irrelevant, because if the system sucks at 50 but kinda works at 80, we know it's screwed up; conversely, if it's not screwed up it'll work just fine at both speeds.

                                I don't know what planet you're on with recirc being uncomfortable, but I run mine all the time. That's also why humidity isn't a continuous factor.
                                Last edited by The Dark Side of Will; 08-02-2019, 06:35 AM.

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