Adding air conditioning

This is the place to discuss NON-diesel engine and driveline modifications.
Jakomatic
Regular Member
Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Jul 07, 2015 10:48 pm
Location: Seattle burbs
Isuzu vehicle(s): 91 Isuzu pickup 2.3l 2wd

Adding air conditioning

Post by Jakomatic »

What's a realistic way to add air conditioning to a 91 2.3l? I am planning a road trip in late August and don't want to fry driving around for a week. I checked rock auto but their kit is around $400, are there more inexpensive options out there? Also if anyone has done this personally I'd like to hear how it went.

Thanks,
Jake
User avatar
JoeIsuzu
Site Admin
Posts: 20943
Joined: Thu Aug 19, 2004 9:11 am
Location: Germantown (next to Elvistown), TN
Isuzu vehicle(s): Original owner, '83 LS Diesel, 5-spd, 2wd, Long Bed, restoration in progress!

Re: Adding air conditioning

Post by JoeIsuzu »

I haven't added one to a Pickup, but this is the approach I'd take. I'd get the entire system from a salvage yard, and have it professionally flushed out. Replace all the O-rings, compressor oil, and dryer. Then get it thoroughly vacuumed down before charging it up. Some shops won't take the time to pull a vacuum, wait a while (and watch the gauges) before charging. If they can pressure check it before charging, even better.

Jack
User avatar
OzarkDaredevil
Regular Member
Posts: 1638
Joined: Wed May 25, 2011 5:31 pm
Location: North Arkansas
Isuzu vehicle(s): '81 Luv diesel 4x4

Re: Adding air conditioning

Post by OzarkDaredevil »

Assuming all necessary components are included, that $400 kit sounds like a deal.
Tom
'81 4x4 diesel LUV - daily driver
Jakomatic
Regular Member
Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Jul 07, 2015 10:48 pm
Location: Seattle burbs
Isuzu vehicle(s): 91 Isuzu pickup 2.3l 2wd

Re: Adding air conditioning

Post by Jakomatic »

Thanks for the input gents. Getting it flushed is a great tip I didn't consider. I'm sure the kit is a great set of components but I was hoping to save some money. The local auto yard is a realistic option I think. I'm still curious if anyone has done this conversion in the past or anything similar on other vehicles.

-Jake
Darby
Regular Member
Posts: 402
Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2012 5:36 pm
Location: Tampa Florida

Re: Adding air conditioning

Post by Darby »

I'm pretty sure you're not going to get a complete air conditioning system for 400 dollars.
The A/C Compressor & Component Kit I saw on Rock Auto is only a compressor, dryer and expansion valve which are the parts that should be new or remanufactured. The rest of the parts can come from the junk yard and you can flush them yourself. The condenser and evaporator are just tubes with fins on them. You'll also need to get the compressor mounting bracket, crank pulley, idler pulley and bracket (don't forget the bolts, nuts and washers that hold this stuff on), pressure switch and wire connector, wire connector for the compressor. I'd run a dedicated 25amp fused wire through a switch then through the pressure switch then to the compressor to turn it on and off.
Original owner of a 1993 Isuzu pick up, 2.3 engine, 5 speed with power steering and air conditioning. All original except the radio (still have factory radio).
It's cheaper to fix what you have than to buy someone else's problems.
User avatar
JoeIsuzu
Site Admin
Posts: 20943
Joined: Thu Aug 19, 2004 9:11 am
Location: Germantown (next to Elvistown), TN
Isuzu vehicle(s): Original owner, '83 LS Diesel, 5-spd, 2wd, Long Bed, restoration in progress!

Re: Adding air conditioning

Post by JoeIsuzu »

Darby wrote:I'd run a dedicated 25amp fused wire through a switch then through the pressure switch then to the compressor to turn it on and off.

The compressor does not draw a heavy electrical load, since it gets its power from the pulley.

For an A/C system, I would avoid generic ("universal") parts, because you could spend all your time (money) making them fit (the only exception might be the condenser). If the evaporator doesn't fit the housing perfectly, air will go around the core. The factory hard lines will keep it from looking like a hack job. Jerry Lemond had quite a few A/C compressors in stock, but I don't know what applications they're for. He fabricated an adapter to make one work for my truck, using my original pulley.

Jack
Dartheyeball
Regular Member
Posts: 24
Joined: Mon Aug 19, 2013 11:38 pm
Location: Overland Park, Kansas

Re: Adding air conditioning

Post by Dartheyeball »

I have a 94 2.3 Pickup 5 speed that I added A/C to. The plus is that the truck was pre-wired for it. I was lucky enough to find a few pickups in the local picknpull and I pulled the evaporator housing and evaporator, low pressure switch, a/c compressor bracket, and hi lo lines from them. You might want to talk to Jerry Lemond, I believe he had an complete A/C kit for our trucks that had everything you needed to add A/C to your truck for close to the cost of the a/c compressor. The a/c evaporator housing from the 93-95 rodeos will directly swap into our pickups. Once you have all the parts, it isn't that hard to add ac since everything was pre-wired.
1994 Isuzu Pickup 2.3L w/156k 5 speed manual.
fallguy
Regular Member
Posts: 804
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2011 9:53 pm
Location: athens ga

Re: Adding air conditioning

Post by fallguy »

The only other problem you will have is the idle kick up on the carb....if it doesn't kick the idle up the ac will stall the motor....ask me how I know.lol
91 isuzu pickup dropped 8" all around,weber carb,header,96 tacoma front bumper. i drive it like i stole it cuz thats the way she likes it!...no bags,no switches,just hammered!!!
User avatar
hagasn
Regular Member
Posts: 344
Joined: Mon May 19, 2008 3:08 pm
Location: central florida
Isuzu vehicle(s): 1991 isuzu pickup 2WD 2.3 4DZ1 engine

Re: Adding air conditioning

Post by hagasn »

saved thanks for the info
i am the original owner of a 1991 isuzu 2WD pickup. the rebuilt motor was bored .040 over with a Calmini camshaft and gemini turbo kit with intercooler. power to the wheels is handled by a centerforce gold clutch.
KillahKila
Regular Member
Posts: 29
Joined: Wed May 26, 2021 9:38 pm
Location: Oahu, Hawaii
Isuzu vehicle(s): 1992 Isuzu pickup 2.3L

Re: Adding air conditioning

Post by KillahKila »

Anyone have a A\C compressor bracket for a 2.3L?
bthood
Regular Member
Posts: 202
Joined: Wed Jul 08, 2020 3:18 am
Location: Bay Minette , Alabama
Isuzu vehicle(s): 1982 Isuzu I-mark engine 1.8 liter diesel, 1987 PUP

Re: Adding air conditioning

Post by bthood »

Do as you please, but for my 2 cents' worth, I would consider an aftermarket system. If you have never pulled a dash from a car or truck, you are in for a never-ending nightmare! Once you are done under the dash, then you've still got a ton of wiring to do and trace down. If you get an aftermarket type system, it is pretty simple. You'll hang an under dash mount system and not have to deal with removing the dash. As far as it looking like a hack job, that's up to you. If you choose to do shoddy work, then it will look like a hack job. If you take your time and follow the directions, then it will look as professional as any other job. If you are not going to show the truck, then I wouldn't worry too much about how good or bad it looks under the hood as long as it is safe and it works. If you do choose to go with the factory-type system, do yourself a favor--PUT A NEW EVAPORATOR under the dash, and under no circumstances use a used evaporator. DO make certain that no matter how good they look, replace all of the O rings. If you have one microscopic hole anywhere in the system, especially in the evaporator, you'll have to take it all apart and start over. You can't go wrong replacing the evaporator or using new O rings. Look at the following link that was posted on ebay. It's about $450 with tax.
https://www.ebay.com/itm/193645528510
Good luck to you and may God bless and protect you.
Brian
KillahKila
Regular Member
Posts: 29
Joined: Wed May 26, 2021 9:38 pm
Location: Oahu, Hawaii
Isuzu vehicle(s): 1992 Isuzu pickup 2.3L

Re: Adding air conditioning

Post by KillahKila »

Thank you for the insight, I have the dash unit in the truck for the ac and the blower just don’t have anything else. But if the link you dropped will work with the dash unit I’ll consider it
Thank you and God bless
User avatar
JoeIsuzu
Site Admin
Posts: 20943
Joined: Thu Aug 19, 2004 9:11 am
Location: Germantown (next to Elvistown), TN
Isuzu vehicle(s): Original owner, '83 LS Diesel, 5-spd, 2wd, Long Bed, restoration in progress!

Re: Adding air conditioning

Post by JoeIsuzu »

bthood wrote:
Mon May 31, 2021 11:11 pm
Do as you please, but for my 2 cents' worth, I would consider an aftermarket system.
Without any disrespect, I prefer the opposite. If we're talking about a "universal fit" type system, I'd avoid it at all cost. If we're talking about aftermarket direct-fit replacement components, I'm fine with that.
KillahKila wrote:
Wed Jun 02, 2021 11:10 pm
I have the dash unit in the truck for the ac and the blower just don’t have anything else.
Can you be specific about the "dash unit"? Do you have:
  • Control panel?
  • Evaporator with expansion valve?
If so, you need:
  • Condenser (I'd consider one from a Rodeo, as they may be a little larger, and they should be more common)
  • Compressor w/bracket
  • Lines (I'd get these custom fabricated rather than 30 year old ones)
  • Receiver/Dryer (ALWAYS use a brand new one, not used)
Jack
KillahKila
Regular Member
Posts: 29
Joined: Wed May 26, 2021 9:38 pm
Location: Oahu, Hawaii
Isuzu vehicle(s): 1992 Isuzu pickup 2.3L

Re: Adding air conditioning

Post by KillahKila »

I have the control panel and the blower
KillahKila
Regular Member
Posts: 29
Joined: Wed May 26, 2021 9:38 pm
Location: Oahu, Hawaii
Isuzu vehicle(s): 1992 Isuzu pickup 2.3L

Re: Adding air conditioning

Post by KillahKila »

I see rockauto has almost all the ac components I just need all the hardware to mount unless the pieces from rockauto come with it then I just need the bracket and tension pulley
Thank you,
Kila
Post Reply