You might not think much about how your air conditioner operates, but it needs refrigerant to keep your residence cold. This refrigerant is subject to environmental laws, because of the chemicals it contains.
Subject to when your air conditioner was added to your home, it may use R-22, R-410A or R-32 refrigerant. We’ll review the differences and which air conditioner refrigerants are being phased out in Heflin, as well as how these phaseouts impact you.
What’s R-22 and Why Is It Discontinued?
If your air conditioner was installed before 2010, it possibly contains Freon®. You can discover if your air conditioner contains it by reaching us at 256-270-1196. You can also look at the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is found outside your house. This sticker will have details on what type of refrigerant your AC has.
Freon, which is also called R-22, contains chlorine. Scientists consider this chemical to be bad for the earth’s ozone layer and one that prompts global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which manages refrigerants in the United States, banned its manufacture 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 cooling properly, you can continue to keep it. With yearly air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your air conditioning to run around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy notes that removing 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 can create difficulties if you have to have air conditioning repair down the road, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs can be more expensive, as only small levels of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is available.
With the discontinuation of R-22, many new air conditioners now rely on Puron®. Also called R-410A, this refrigerant was made to keep the ozone layer strong. As it needs a varying pressure level, it doesn’t work with air conditioners that use R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the possibility to contribute to global warming. Because of that, it may also sometime be phased out. Although it hasn’t been mandated yet for residential air conditioners, it’s anticipated sometime this decade.
What Refrigerant Will Take Over R-410A?
In preparation of the phaseout, some manufacturers have started using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant rates low for global warming likelihood—approximately one-third less than R-410A. And it also reduces energy consumption by around 10%, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fourth Assessment Report. That’s savings that could be sent on to you through your cooling expenses.
Bain Heating & Air Conditioning Can Assist with All Your Air Conditioning Needs
In summary, the changes to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t concern you greatly until you need repairs. But as we discussed earlier, refrigerant repairs may be more costly because of the reduced amounts that are accessible.
In addition to that, your air conditioner often breaks down at the worst time, typically on the warmest day when we’re getting a lot of other appointments for AC repair.
If your air conditioner uses a discontinued refrigerant or is more than 15 years old, we suggest installing a new, energy-efficient air conditioner. This provides a stress-free summer and may even reduce your electrical bills, especially if you get an ENERGY STAR®-rated air conditioner. Plus, Bain Heating & Air Conditioning has many financing programs to make your new air conditioner even more affordable. Contact us at 256-270-1196 to begin right away with a free estimate.