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97 f-150 ac wtf?


Red Skull Member
May 25, 2020
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I replaced the old locked up AC compressor on a 97 F-150 4.6l and replaced everything but the evaporator coil in the dash. I drew down a vacuum and began charging the system after the required time had passed and I was good there were no leaks. I got about a can of r134 into the system before I saw sparks come out of the coil area of the compressor and it made a heck of a racket. The new compressor was shipped full of oil so that *shouldn't* be the issue. My question is, what happened? Could it be a bad bearing? Did the new compressor frag itself?
I'm pretty sure I did. The problem is I installed it last year and since it had a leak from the get go I never charged ten system. I had driven the truck with no AC. The leak was due to roached o-rings, that were also new.
Dont think I have ever seen sparks come out of a compressor, new or old. Take the belt off and spin the pulley... bearing feel smooth? Can you try and rotate the clutch face to see if it actually turns? They are stuff but should still be able to turn by hand.

If ok, then maybe just the first time that magnetic clutch cycled on there was a piece of something in there from manufacturing? Hecho en china?
The pulley spins fine, the clutch is locked up like a devout quaker on Prom night.
the spark came out from the area of the electric clutch. If I have time I'll pull the pulley off tonight and see what's gong on.
I bought a new compressor today and managed to get it back together. 1/2 a charge later the system actually cools a bit.
..and now the effing transfer case is in neutral. I really don't want to have to pull and rebuild it. I'm pretty sure it's a BW4406 and I'm reasonably confident that the range fork bushings are kaput.
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