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 rules, as it contains chemicals.
Based on when your air conditioner was put in, it may require R-22, R-410A or R-32 refrigerant. We’ll discuss the differences and which air conditioner refrigerants are being phased out in Cape Coral, as well as how these phaseouts impact you.
What’s R-22 and Why Is It Phased Out?
If your air conditioner was added before 2010, it likely contains Freon®. You can find out if your air conditioner has it by contacting us at 239-214-0411. You can also look at the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is located outside your residence. This sticker will contain info on what model of refrigerant your AC needs.
Freon, which is also referred to as R-22, includes chlorine. Scientists consider this chemical to be harmful to the earth’s ozone layer and one that leads to global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which governs refrigerants in the United States, outlawed its manufacture and import in January 2020.
Should I Replace My R-22 Air Conditioner?
It depends. If your air conditioning is cooling properly, you can continue to use it. With routine air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your air conditioning to operate around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy reports that substituting a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on summertime cooling costs!
If you don’t get a new air conditioner, it can cause a problem if you require air conditioning repair later on, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs might be more expensive, since only small quantities of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is available.
With the discontinuation of R-22, many new air conditioners now use Puron®. Also referred to as R-410A, this refrigerant was created to keep the ozone layer strong. Since it requires an incompatible pressure level, it doesn’t match air conditioners that rely on R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the possibility to lead to global warming. As a consequence, it could also sometime be discontinued. Although it hasn’t been disclosed yet for residential air conditioners, it’s anticipated sometime this decade.
What Refrigerant Will Take Over R-410A?
In preparation of the end, some manufacturers have started using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant is classified low for global warming potential—around one-third less than R-410A. And it also reduces energy use by around 10%, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fourth Assessment Report. That’s savings that might be passed on to you through your energy expenses.
Comfort Zone, LLC Can Help 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 talked about beforehand, refrigerant repairs may be pricier because of the low amounts that are accessible.
Not to mention, your air conditioner typically stops working at the worst time, often on the hottest day when we’re receiving lots of other calls for AC repair.
If your air conditioner relies on a discontinued refrigerant or is getting old, we suggest getting a modern, energy-efficient air conditioner. This delivers a hassle-free summer and may even decrease your utility costs, especially if you get an ENERGY STAR®-rated model. Plus, Comfort Zone, LLC offers many financing programs to make your new air conditioner even more affordable. Contact us at 239-214-0411 to start now with a free estimate.