You might not think much about how your air conditioner operates, but it needs refrigerant to keep your home fresh. This refrigerant is bound by environmental regulation, since it contains chemicals.
Depending on when your air conditioner was put in, it may need R-22, R-410A or R-32 refrigerant. We’ll go over the differences and which air conditioner refrigerants are being phased out in Omaha, plus how these phaseouts affect you.
What’s R-22 and Why Is It No Longer Being Made?
If your air conditioner was added before 2010, it probably contains Freon®. You can learn if your air conditioner has it by reaching us at 402-509-5940. You can also inspect the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is located outside your home. This sticker will have information on what kind of refrigerant your AC uses.
Freon, which is also referred to as R-22, has chlorine. Scientists consider R-22 to be bad for the earth’s ozone layer and one that leads to global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which manages refrigerants in the United States, barred its manufacture and import in January 2020.
Should I Replace My R-22 Air Conditioner?
It depends. If your air conditioning is operating as designed, you can continue to run it. With regular air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your air conditioning to operate around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy reports that replacing a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on annual cooling bills!
If you don’t replace your air conditioner, it can lead to a problem if you have to have air conditioning repair in the future, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs could be pricier, since only small amounts of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is on hand.
With the discontinuation of R-22, many new air conditioners now use Puron®. Also referred to as R-410A, this refrigerant was made to keep the ozone layer strong. As it requires a different pressure level, it doesn’t match air conditioners that rely on R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the potential to create global warming. Because of that, it might also ultimately be ended. Although it hasn’t been disclosed yet for residential air conditioners, it’s anticipated sometime this decade.
What Refrigerant Will Replace R-410A?
In preparation of the discontinuation, some companies have started using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant rates low for global warming possibility—about 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 passed on to you through your energy bills.
Interstate Heating & Air Conditioning Can Assist with All Your Air Conditioning Needs
In brief, the modifications to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t concern you greatly until you require repairs. But as we discussed beforehand, refrigerant-related repairs may be more costly because of the reduced amounts that are accessible.
Not to mention, your air conditioner often stops working at the worst time, often on the hottest day when we’re getting lots of other requests for AC repair.
If your air conditioner relies on a discontinued refrigerant or is more than 15 years old, we recommend installing a modern, energy-efficient air conditioner. This ensures a trouble-free summer and may even reduce your cooling expenses, especially if you select an ENERGY STAR®-rated system. Plus, Interstate Heating & Air Conditioning offers many financing options to make your new air conditioner fit your budget. Contact us at 402-509-5940 to get started right away with a free estimate.