How Does Air Conditioning Refrigerant Phaseout Affect Me?

August 05, 2020

You might not think often about how your air conditioner functions, but it has to have refrigerant to keep your home cool. This refrigerant is bound by environmental laws, as it contains chemicals.

Subject to when your air conditioner was installed, 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 Northglenn, as well as how these phaseouts affect you.

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

If your air conditioner was installed before 2010, it likely uses Freon®. You can learn if your air conditioner has it by contacting us at 303-452-4146. 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 model of refrigerant your AC needs.

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

Should I Replace My R-22 Air Conditioner?

It differs. If your air conditioning is running fine, you can continue to run it. With regular air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your AC to last around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy says that substituting a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on annual cooling costs!

If you don’t install a new air conditioner, it could cause a problem if you have to have air conditioning repair down the road, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs might be more expensive, as only small amounts of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is on hand.

With the discontinuation of R-22, a lot of 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 a varying pressure level, it doesn’t match air conditioners that need R-22 for cooling.

However, Puron still has the likelihood to create global warming. As a consequence, it may also eventually be phased out. Although it hasn’t been mandated yet for residential air conditioners, it’s likely sometime this decade.

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

In preparation of the end, some brands have initiated 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 lowers energy use by about 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 costs.

Northglenn Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. Can Help with All Your Air Conditioning Needs

In brief, the modifications to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t impact you very much until you require repairs. But as we reviewed earlier, repairs connected to refrigerant may be pricier due to the reduced quantities that are accessible.

In addition to that, your air conditioner usually malfunctions at the worst time, frequently on the warmest day when we’re getting lots of other calls for AC repair.

If your air conditioner relies on an outdated refrigerant or is aging, we recommend upgrading to a modern, energy-efficient air conditioner. This delivers a stress-free summer and might even lower your utility expenses, especially if you get an ENERGY STAR®-rated model. Plus, Northglenn Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. offers many financing programs to make your new air conditioner fit your budget. Contact us at 303-452-4146 to get started now with a free estimate.