Air conditioner service

Which Air Conditioning Refrigerants Are Being Phased Out?

You might not think often about how your air conditioner works, but it relies on refrigerant to keep your residence fresh. This refrigerant is subject to environmental regulation, because of the chemicals it contains.

Subject to when your air conditioner was installed, it may need R-22, R-410A or R-32 refrigerant. We’ll discuss the differences and which air conditioner refrigerants are being phased out in Hickory, plus how these phaseouts impact you.

What’s R-22 and Why is It Phased Out?

If your air conditioner was added before 2010, it possibly has Freon®. You can learn if your air conditioner uses it by contacting us at 828-283-0369. You can also inspect the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is located outside your home. This sticker will include info on what kind of refrigerant your AC needs.

Freon, which is also known as R-22, has chlorine. Scientists consider R-22 to be harmful to the earth’s ozone layer and one that leads to global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which regulates refrigerants in the United States, banned its creation and import in January 2020.

I Have a R-22 Air Conditioner. Should I Replace It?

It depends. If your air conditioning is operating fine, you can continue to keep it. With regular air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your system to last around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy notes that replacing a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on summertime cooling bills!

If you don’t install a new air conditioner, it could cause difficulties if you need air conditioning repair later on, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs can be pricier, since only reduced levels of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is available.

With the discontinuation of R-22, a lot of new air conditioners now rely on Puron®. Also known as R-410A, this refrigerant was made to keep the ozone layer in good shape. As it calls for a different pressure level, it isn’t compatible with air conditioners that need R-22 for cooling.

However, Puron still has the likelihood to contribute to global warming. Because of that, it might also eventually be phased out. Although it hasn’t been communicated yet for residential air conditioners, it’s likely sometime this decade.

What Refrigerant Will Take Over R-410A?

In preparation of the phaseout, some brands have started using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant ranks low for global warming potential—around one-third less than R-410A. And it also reduces energy expenditure by about 10%, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fourth Assessment Report. That’s savings that might be sent on to you through your cooling costs.

Climate Control Systems Can Provide Support with All Your Air Conditioning Needs

In brief, the modifications to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t affect you a whole lot until you need repairs. But as we went over earlier, refrigerant-related repairs may be pricier because of the reduced levels available.

Not to mention, your air conditioner frequently breaks down at the worst time, often on the muggiest day when we’re receiving many other requests for AC repair.

If your air conditioner uses a phased out refrigerant or is aging, we recommend installing a new, energy-efficient air conditioner. This provides a trouble-free summer and could even lower your electrical bills, especially if you select an ENERGY STAR®-rated model. Plus, Climate Control Systems has many financing programs to make your new air conditioner fit your budget. Contact us at 828-283-0369 to start right away with a free estimate.

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