You might not think much about how your air conditioner works, but it depends on refrigerant to keep your residence cold. This refrigerant is subject to environmental rules, since it contains chemicals.
Based on 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 Safford, in addition to how these phaseouts impact you.
What’s R-22 and Why Is It No Longer Being Made?
If your air conditioner was added before 2010, it possibly has Freon®. You can discover if your air conditioner has it by contacting us at 928-432-6018. You can also look at the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is located outside your home. This sticker will contain information on what kind of refrigerant your AC uses.
Freon, which is also referred to as R-22, includes chlorine. Scientists consider Freon to be harmful to the earth’s ozone layer and one that contributes to global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which manages refrigerants in the United States, barred its manufacture and import in January 2020.
Should I Replace My R-22 Air Conditioner?
It varies. If your air conditioning is cooling fine, you can continue to use it. With routine air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your AC to work around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy reports that replacing a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on annual cooling bills!
If you don’t install a new air conditioner, it might create difficulties if you have to have air conditioning repair in the future, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs may be pricier, because only reduced amounts of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is on hand.
With the end of R-22, a lot of new air conditioners now rely on Puron®. Also called R-410A, this refrigerant was made to keep the ozone layer strong. Because it needs a different pressure level, it isn’t compatible with air conditioners that use R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the likelihood to create global warming. As a consequence, it might also eventually be ended. Although it hasn’t been communicated yet for residential air conditioners, it’s likely sometime this decade.
What Refrigerant Will Take the Place of R-410A?
In preparation of the phaseout, some manufacturers have begun using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant ranks low for global warming potential—approximately one-third less than R-410A. And it also reduces energy use by approximately 10%, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fourth Assessment Report. That’s savings that may be forwarded on to you through your energy bills.
B&D Air Conditioning Can Provide Support with All Your Air Conditioning Needs
In summary, the alterations to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t affect you very much until you have to have repairs. But as we talked about previously, refrigerant-related repairs may be more expensive due to the low levels on hand.
In addition to that, your air conditioner typically breaks down at the worst time, typically on the warmest day when we’re getting many other requests for AC repair.
If your air conditioner relies on a phased out refrigerant or is getting old, we suggest installing an up-to-date, energy-efficient air conditioner. This delivers a stress-free summer and could even lower your utility bills, especially if you select an ENERGY STAR®-rated system. Plus, B&D Air Conditioning offers many financing programs to make your new air conditioner fit your budget. Contact us at 928-432-6018 to start today with a free estimate.