You might not think a lot about how your air conditioner works, but it has to have refrigerant to keep your house cool. This refrigerant is subject to environmental laws, since it contains chemicals.
Subject to when your air conditioner was put in, it may need R-22, R-410A or R-32 refrigerant. We’ll review the differences and which air conditioner refrigerants are being phased out in Savage, in addition to how these phaseouts affect you.
What’s R-22 and Why is It Phased Out?
If your air conditioner was added before 2010, it likely contains Freon®. You can learn if your air conditioner uses it by contacting us at 952-373-0377. You can also examine the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is located outside your house. This sticker will contain information on what kind of refrigerant your AC uses.
Freon, which is also called R-22, has chlorine. Scientists consider R-22 to be harmful to the earth’s ozone layer and one that results in global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which oversees refrigerants in the United States, barred its manufacture and import in January 2020.
I Use an Air Conditioner with R-22. Do I Need to Get a New One?
It varies. If your air conditioning is running properly, you can continue to run it. With regular air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your system 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 keep your air conditioner, it might create a problem if you need 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 phaseout of R-22, most new air conditioners now rely on Puron®. Also referred to as R-410A, this refrigerant was created to keep the ozone layer strong. As it needs a varying pressure level, it isn’t compatible with air conditioners that need R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the potential to contribute to global warming. As a consequence, it might also ultimately be phased out. 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 brands have begun using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant is classified low for global warming possibility—around one-third less than R-410A. And it also reduces energy expenditure by around 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 utility expenses.
Gopher Heating and Air Conditioning Can Help with All Your Air Conditioning Needs
In short, the alterations to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t affect you greatly until you have to have repairs. But as we reviewed previously, refrigerant-related repairs could be pricier due to the limited quantities on hand.
In addition to that, your air conditioner frequently needs repair at the worst time, often on the hottest day when we’re experiencing lots of other requests for AC repair.
If your air conditioner relies on an outdated refrigerant or is aging, we recommend installing a new, energy-efficient air conditioner. This delivers a stress-free summer and could even decrease your electrical bills, especially if you select an ENERGY STAR®-rated system. Plus, Gopher Heating and Air Conditioning offers many financing programs to make your new air conditioner fit your budget. Contact us at 952-373-0377 to get started right away with a free estimate.