You might not think often about how your air conditioner functions, but it depends on refrigerant to keep your home cold. This refrigerant is bound by environmental rules, as it contains chemicals.
Based on when your air conditioner was added to your home, it may require R-22, R-410A or R-32 refrigerant. We’ll review the differences and which air conditioner refrigerants are being phased out in Hodgenville, in addition to how these phaseouts impact you.
What’s R-22 and Why is It No Longer Being Made?
If your air conditioner was added before 2010, it likely contains Freon®. You can find out if your air conditioner uses it by calling us at 270-358-3167. You can also examine the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is found outside your home. This sticker will include information 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 damaging to the earth’s ozone layer and one that results in global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which controls refrigerants in the United States, banned its creation and import in January 2020.
I Have a R-22 Air Conditioner. Should I Replace It?
It differs. If your air conditioning is working correctly, you can continue to use it. With regular air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your air conditioning to last around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy notes that substituting a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on annual cooling expenses!
If you don’t get a new air conditioner, it can create a problem if you have to have air conditioning repair down the road, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs can be pricier, because only limited amounts of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is on hand.
With the discontinuation of R-22, many new air conditioners now have Puron®. Also known as R-410A, this refrigerant was made to keep the ozone layer healthy. Because it requires a different pressure level, it doesn’t match air conditioners that rely on R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the possibility to contribute to global warming. Because of that, it could also sometime be ended. Although it hasn’t been communicated 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 started using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant rates low for global warming possibility—around one-third less than R-410A. And it also reduces energy use by approximately 10%, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fourth Assessment Report. That’s savings that could be forwarded on to you through your cooling bills.
Phelps Heating & Cooling Can Help with All Your Air Conditioning Needs
In summary, the changes to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t affect you greatly until you have to have repairs. But as we talked about beforehand, repairs connected to refrigerant may be pricier due to the reduced amounts that are accessible.
In addition to that, your air conditioner typically stops working at the worst time, often on the muggiest day when we’re experiencing many other calls for AC repair.
If your air conditioner requires an outdated refrigerant or is getting old, we advise upgrading to a new, energy-efficient air conditioner. This delivers a trouble-free summer and could even lower your energy expenses, especially if you get an ENERGY STAR®-rated system. Plus, Phelps Heating & Cooling has many financing programs to make your new air conditioner even more affordable. Contact us at 270-358-3167 to begin today with a free estimate.