Air Conditioning Tools
Fortunately, most air conditioning tools are the same tools used in other mechanical trades.
If you're looking for specific tools that aren't available on eBay or in a local tool store, do a google search for the manufacturer or the specific tool type.
On the manufacturer's web site, look for their shopping pages, or for distributors in your area.
Are you new in the trade, and wondering what air conditioning tools to start off with?
Regarding gauges, you can read about my favorites on our
Air Conditioning Manifold Gauges
OK, you'll need a good set of screwdrivers, both phillips and slotted, from tiny to XXX-L.
You'll need the tiny sizes for connecting wiring in thermostats and on solid state boards, and for adjusting potentiometers.
You'll need a #3 phillips occasionally, and sometimes a very large slotted for terminals on large contactors and breakers, and you'll need the #1 and #2 phillips and the similar sized slotted often, so get a good set with both types of screwdrivers in as many sizes as possible.
You'll need nutdrivers from 1/4 through 3/8, and similar sized metric nutdrivers if you're working on asian or european made equipment.
I'd recommend folding sets of torx drivers and allen drivers, and an extra long set of allen drivers to make fan and blower work easier.
Depending on the equipment you work on, you may need sets in both US and metric sizes.
You'll find that 6", 8", and 12" adjustable crescent (spanner) wrenches will come in handy on a daily basis.
Other air conditioning tools you'll need are a 3/8 drive socket set, combination wrenches from 1/4 through 7/8, a service ratchet, mechanics pliers, long nose pliers, and a wire stripper/crimper.
Moving on to other types of air conditioning tools;
I like the Fluke clamp type multi meters as all-around electrical testers.
A true RMS meter will be more accurate, and if you can, get one with features like minimum-maximum readings and in-rush (LRA) current measurement.
Depending on the types of equipment you work on, a meter that can take both ac and dc voltage and amp readings might be a good idea.
My pick for an infra red thermometer would be one of the Delta Trak Thermo Trace models, and for a digital stick type thermometer, the Delta Trak Model 11024 is the toughest I've ever used, and lasted through 2 years of hard daily use until the touch switches just finally wore out.
You can find them on-line at www.deltatrak.com.
I don't have any specific recommendations on vacuum pumps or recovery machines.
The ones I've used have always been shared with other techs in the shop, so I've never known for sure whether failures were caused by operator error or deficiencies in the machines.
Get the best machines available in your area, and take good care of them.
Another important category of air conditioning tools is torches.
To put it simply, you can't go wrong with Victor welding equipment.
I own one of their oxy-acetylene welding sets, and It works fine.
I also own their Turbo Snake mapp gas/air torch.
It is light, easy to haul around, and works fine brazing pipe up to 3/4.
Their acetylene/air torches work about the same.
At about the 3/4 OD pipe size, both of these torch types are a lot less efficient than an oxygen/acetylene set when brazing or soldering copper pipe to brass fittings, although they'll get the job done eventually if they're all you have available.
My recommendation would be to use a Turbo Snake torch set when brazing small pipes, (especially if you're hauling your tools up onto roofs and into attics), and an oxygen/acetylene set on the larger pipe sizes.
I hope this page about air conditioning tools has helped you decide what tools you might need, and please, feel free to contact us with any specific HVAC questions you might have, including questions about air conditioning on Guam, and refrigeration on Guam.
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