Air conditioner service

How Does Air Conditioning Refrigerant Phaseout Affect Me?

You might not think often about how your air conditioner works, but it relies on refrigerant to keep your house cold. This refrigerant is subject to environmental regulation, since it contains chemicals.

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 Alice, plus how these phaseouts impact you.

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

If your air conditioner was installed before 2010, it likely has Freon®. You can find out if your air conditioner has it by reaching us at 361-265-4371. You can also look at the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is situated outside your house. This sticker will include details on what kind of refrigerant your AC uses.

Freon, which is also known as R-22, includes chlorine. Scientists consider this chemical to be damaging to the earth’s ozone layer and one that contributes to global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which governs refrigerants in the United States, outlawed its manufacture and import in January 2020.

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

It varies. If your air conditioning is running correctly, you can continue to keep it. With regular air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your air conditioning 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 annual cooling bills!

If you don’t get a new air conditioner, it might lead to difficulties if you require air conditioning repair down the road, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs can be more expensive, because only limited levels 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 known as R-410A, this refrigerant was made to keep the ozone layer strong. As it needs an incompatible pressure level, it isn’t compatible with air conditioners that rely on R-22 for cooling.

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

What Refrigerant Will Replace R-410A?

In preparation of the end, some companies have begun using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant is classified low for global warming potential—about one-third less than R-410A. And it also lowers energy use by around 10%, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fourth Assessment Report. That’s savings that may be passed on to you through your cooling expenses.

Rescue Heating & Air Can Assist with All Your Air Conditioning Needs

In summary, the changes to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t concern you greatly until you have to have repairs. But as we went over beforehand, repairs connected to refrigerant could be pricier since there are the reduced quantities on hand.

Not to mention, your air conditioner usually needs repair at the worst time, often on the warmest day when we’re receiving a lot of other requests for AC repair.

If your air conditioner relies on an outdated refrigerant or is more than 15 years old, we advise upgrading to a new, energy-efficient air conditioner. This delivers a hassle-free summer and may even decrease your electrical bills, especially if you select an ENERGY STAR®-rated air conditioner. Plus, Rescue Heating & Air has many financing solutions to make your new air conditioner work with your budget. Contact us at 361-265-4371 to start now with a free estimate.

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