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 put in, 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 the Rio Grande Valley, in addition to how these phaseouts impact you.
What’s R-22 and Why is It Phased Out?
If your air conditioner was added before 2010, it likely uses Freon®. You can discover if your air conditioner contains it by calling us at 956-630-3522. You can also check the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is found outside your home. This sticker will contain details on what kind of refrigerant your AC uses.
Freon, which is also referred to as R-22, includes chlorine. Scientists consider Freon to be harmful to the earth’s ozone layer and one that leads to global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which controls refrigerants in the United States, outlawed its creation 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 cooling fine, you can continue to run it. With routine air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your AC to work around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy notes that replacing a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on summertime cooling costs!
If you don’t get a new air conditioner, it may create a problem if you require air conditioning repair in the future, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs can be higher-priced, because only limited quantities of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is available.
With the end of R-22, a lot of new air conditioners now use Puron®. Also known as R-410A, this refrigerant was made to keep the ozone layer in good shape. Since it needs an incompatible pressure level, it isn’t compatible with air conditioners that use R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the possibility to create global warming. Because of that, it might also eventually be discontinued. Although it hasn’t been mandated yet for residential air conditioners, it’s expected sometime this decade.
What Refrigerant Will Take the Place of R-410A?
In preparation of the phaseout, some companies have begun using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant ranks low for global warming potential—about one-third less than R-410A. And it also decreases energy consumption by around 10%, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fourth Assessment Report. That’s savings that may be sent on to you through your utility expenses.
Cytech Heating & Cooling L.C. Can Help with All Your Air Conditioning Needs
In brief, the alterations to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t concern you greatly until you require repairs. But as we discussed previously, refrigerant-related repairs can be pricier because of the reduced amounts on hand.
Aside from that, your air conditioner frequently 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 requires a phased out refrigerant or is aging, we suggest upgrading to a modern, energy-efficient air conditioner. This ensures a stress-free summer and may even decrease your electrical bills, especially if you get an ENERGY STAR®-rated air conditioner. Plus, Cytech Heating & Cooling L.C. has many financing solutions to make your new air conditioner fit your budget. Contact us at 956-630-3522 to start right away with a free estimate.