Are Air Conditioning Refrigerants Being Phased Out?

August 05, 2020

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

Based on when your air conditioner was added to your home, 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 Plover, plus how these phaseouts impact you.

What’s R-22 and Why is It No Longer Being Made?

If your air conditioner was put in before 2010, it likely contains Freon®. You can find out if your air conditioner uses it by calling us at 715-504-0533. You can also examine the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is situated outside your residence. This sticker will contain details on what type of refrigerant your AC needs.

Freon, which is also known as R-22, has chlorine. Scientists consider Freon to be bad for the earth’s ozone layer and one that leads to global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which manages refrigerants in the United States, outlawed its production and import in January 2020.

I Use an Air Conditioner with R-22. Do I Need to Get a New One?

It depends. If your air conditioning is operating properly, you can continue to run it. With routine air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your system to work around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy reports that removing a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on yearly cooling costs!

If you don’t install a new air conditioner, it could lead to difficulties if you need air conditioning repair later on, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs can be higher-priced, since only small levels of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is available.

With the discontinuation of R-22, a lot of new air conditioners now rely on Puron®. Also referred to as R-410A, this refrigerant was created to keep the ozone layer healthy. As it calls for 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. As a result, it might 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 Replace R-410A?

In preparation of the discontinuation, some manufacturers have initiated using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant is classified low for global warming possibility—approximately one-third less than R-410A. And it also decreases energy expenditure by about 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 utility expenses.

Point Heating & Cooling Can Assist with All Your Air Conditioning Needs

In brief, the alterations to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t concern you a whole lot until you require repairs. But as we talked about previously, refrigerant-related repairs might be more expensive because of the restricted quantities that are accessible.

In addition to that, your air conditioner usually breaks down at the worst time, typically on the hottest day when we’re receiving lots of other appointments for AC repair.

If your air conditioner relies on an outdated refrigerant or is more than 15 years old, we recommend upgrading to an up-to-date, energy-efficient air conditioner. This provides a hassle-free summer and may even reduce your electrical bills, especially if you get an ENERGY STAR®-rated air conditioner. Plus, Point Heating & Cooling offers many financing solutions to make your new air conditioner even more affordable. Contact us at 715-504-0533 to begin today with a free estimate.