You might not think often about how your air conditioner works, but it relies on refrigerant to keep your house fresh. 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 review the differences and which air conditioner refrigerants are being phased out in Houston, as well as how these phaseouts have on influence on you.
What’s R-22 and Why Is It Phased Out?
If your air conditioner was added before 2010, it likely has Freon®. You can discover if your air conditioner uses it by contacting us at 713-322-4318. You can also inspect the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is situated outside your home. This sticker will include info on what type of refrigerant your AC has.
Freon, which is also referred to as R-22, has chlorine. Scientists consider this chemical to be bad for the earth’s ozone layer and one that contributes to global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which manages refrigerants in the United States, outlawed its creation and import in January 2020.
Should I Replace My R-22 Air Conditioner?
It varies. If your air conditioning is cooling properly, you can continue to keep it. With yearly air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your AC to last around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy notes that replacing a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on annual cooling expenses!
If you don’t install a new air conditioner, it may lead to a problem if you need 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 accessible.
With the phaseout of R-22, many new air conditioners now use Puron®. Also known as R-410A, this refrigerant was created to keep the ozone layer healthy. Because it needs a varying pressure level, it doesn’t match air conditioners that rely on R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the possibility to lead to global warming. Because of that, it could also ultimately be discontinued. Although it hasn’t been communicated yet for residential air conditioners, it’s anticipated sometime this decade.
What Refrigerant Will Replace R-410A?
In preparation of the discontinuation, some manufacturers have started using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant ranks low for global warming possibility—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 might be sent on to you through your utility expenses.
Air Current AC & Heat Can Provide Support with All Your Air Conditioning Needs
In brief, the changes to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t impact you greatly until you need repairs. But as we went over earlier, refrigerant-related repairs may be more costly since there are the reduced amounts on hand.
In addition to that, your air conditioner typically stops working at the worst time, typically on the hottest day when we’re receiving lots of other requests for AC repair.
If your air conditioner relies on a phased out refrigerant or is aging, we suggest getting a modern, energy-efficient air conditioner. This provides a stress-free summer and could even lower your utility expenses, especially if you select an ENERGY STAR®-rated system. Plus, Air Current AC & Heat has many financing solutions to make your new air conditioner even more affordable. Contact us at 713-322-4318 to start today with a free estimate.