You might not think much about how your air conditioner functions, but it requires refrigerant to keep your residence fresh. This refrigerant is subject to environmental regulation, as it contains chemicals.
Based on when your air conditioner was added to your home, it may use R-22, R-410A or R-32 refrigerant. We’ll discuss the differences and which air conditioner refrigerants are being phased out in McMurray, as well as how these phaseouts affect you.
What’s R-22 and Why is It Discontinued?
If your air conditioner was installed before 2010, it possibly contains Freon®. You can find out if your air conditioner has it by contacting us at 724-370-0141. You can also check the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is situated outside your house. This sticker will include details on what kind of refrigerant your AC has.
Freon, which is also known as R-22, includes chlorine. Scientists consider this chemical to be damaging to the earth’s ozone layer and one that leads to global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which oversees refrigerants in the United States, barred its creation and import in January 2020.
I Have a R-22 Air Conditioner. Should I Replace It?
It depends. If your air conditioning is running fine, you can continue to keep it. With regular air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your AC to operate around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy says that substituting a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on yearly cooling costs!
If you don’t replace your air conditioner, it can lead to an issue if you have to have air conditioning repair later on, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs can be pricier, as only reduced amounts of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is available.
With the phaseout of R-22, most new air conditioners now have Puron®. Also known as R-410A, this refrigerant was developed to keep the ozone layer in good shape. As it calls for a different pressure level, it doesn’t work with air conditioners that rely on R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the potential to create global warming. As a result, it could also ultimately be phased out. Although it hasn’t been disclosed yet for residential air conditioners, it’s anticipated sometime this decade.
What Refrigerant Will Take the Place of R-410A?
In preparation of the end, some brands have begun using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant is classified low for global warming potential—about 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 might be sent on to you through your energy expenses.
Kowalski Heating, Cooling & Plumbing Can Help with All Your Air Conditioning Needs
In brief, the alterations to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t concern you greatly until you need repairs. But as we reviewed earlier, refrigerant repairs might be pricier since there are the reduced levels on hand.
In addition to that, your air conditioner frequently stops working at the worst time, frequently on the hottest day when we’re getting a lot of other appointments for AC repair.
If your air conditioner relies on a discontinued refrigerant or is more than 15 years old, we advise upgrading to a modern, energy-efficient air conditioner. This ensures a hassle-free summer and might even decrease your energy costs, especially if you select an ENERGY STAR®-rated model. Plus, Kowalski Heating, Cooling & Plumbing offers many financing programs to make your new air conditioner work with your budget. Contact us at 724-370-0141 to begin right away with a free estimate.