How Does Air Conditioning Refrigerant Phaseout Affect Me?

August 05, 2020

You might not think much about how your air conditioner works, but it requires refrigerant to keep your residence cool. This refrigerant is subject to environmental regulation, as it contains chemicals.

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

What’s R-22 and Why is It Discontinued?

If your air conditioner was put in before 2010, it likely has Freon®. You can discover if your air conditioner uses it by contacting us at 254-307-9572. You can also examine the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is situated outside your home. This sticker will include details on what model of refrigerant your AC uses.

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

I Use an Air Conditioner with R-22. Do I Need to Get a New One?

It varies. If your air conditioning is working properly, you can continue to run it. With annual air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your AC to work around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy notes that removing a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on summertime cooling costs!

If you keep your air conditioner, it might create an issue if you have to have air conditioning repair in the future, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs can be higher-priced, because only limited quantities of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is available.

With the phaseout of R-22, a lot of new air conditioners now rely on Puron®. Also known as R-410A, this refrigerant was developed to keep the ozone layer strong. Since it requires a varying pressure level, it doesn’t work with air conditioners that use R-22 for cooling.

However, Puron still has the potential to create global warming. As a consequence, it could also ultimately be discontinued. Although it hasn’t been communicated yet for residential air conditioners, it’s anticipated sometime this decade.

What Refrigerant Will Take the Place of R-410A?

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

Bell Air Conditioning Inc. Can Assist with All Your Air Conditioning Needs

In short, the changes to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t concern you a whole lot until you require repairs. But as we mentioned earlier, repairs connected to refrigerant can be more costly since there are the limited quantities on hand.

Aside from that, your air conditioner frequently breaks down at the worst time, typically on the hottest day when we’re receiving lots of other calls for AC repair.

If your air conditioner uses an outdated refrigerant or is more than 15 years old, we suggest upgrading to a new, energy-efficient air conditioner. This provides a trouble-free summer and could even reduce your electrical bills, especially if you get an ENERGY STAR®-rated system. Plus, Bell Air Conditioning Inc. provides many financing solutions to make your new air conditioner fit your budget. Contact us at 254-307-9572 to start now with a free estimate.