Are Air Conditioning Refrigerants Being Phased Out?

August 05, 2020

You might not think much about how your air conditioner operates, but it needs refrigerant to keep your home cold. This refrigerant is subject to environmental regulation, since 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 go over the differences and which air conditioner refrigerants are being phased out in Mobile, plus how these phaseouts impact you.

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

If your air conditioner was added before 2010, it possibly contains Freon®. You can discover if your air conditioner uses it by reaching us at 251-471-2674. You can also check the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is situated outside your residence. This sticker will include info on what model of refrigerant your AC uses.

Freon, which is also known as R-22, contains chlorine. Scientists consider R-22 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 differs. If your air conditioning is running properly, you can continue to run it. With annual air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your AC to operate around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy says that removing a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on yearly cooling bills!

If you don’t install a new air conditioner, it could lead to difficulties if you have to have air conditioning repair in the future, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs can be more expensive, as only limited levels of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is on hand.

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

However, Puron still has the likelihood to create global warming. Because of that, it could also ultimately be phased out. Although it hasn’t been communicated yet for residential air conditioners, it’s expected sometime this decade.

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

In preparation of the discontinuation, some companies have initiated 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 lowers energy consumption by approximately 10%, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fourth Assessment Report. That’s savings that might be sent on to you through your electrical bills.

Farnell Heating & Air Conditioning Inc Can Help with All Your Air Conditioning Needs

In summary, the alterations to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t affect you greatly until you need repairs. But as we talked about beforehand, repairs connected to refrigerant could be more expensive since there are the reduced quantities available.

Aside from that, your air conditioner often needs repair at the worst time, frequently on the warmest day when we’re getting many other appointments for AC repair.

If your air conditioner requires an outdated refrigerant or is getting old, we recommend upgrading to a new, energy-efficient air conditioner. This ensures a hassle-free summer and can even lower your energy costs, especially if you get an ENERGY STAR®-rated system. Plus, Farnell Heating & Air Conditioning Inc offers many financing solutions to make your new air conditioner work with your budget. Contact us at 251-471-2674 to begin today with a free estimate.