You might not think much about how your air conditioner operates, but it relies on refrigerant to keep your house fresh. This refrigerant is controlled by environmental laws, because of the chemicals it contains.
Subject to when your air conditioner was added to your home, it may use R-22, R-410A or R-32 refrigerant. We’ll review the differences and which air conditioner refrigerants are being phased out in Auburn, as well as how these phaseouts have on influence on you.
What’s R-22 and Why is It No Longer Being Made?
If your air conditioner was installed before 2010, it probably has Freon®. You can discover if your air conditioner has it by contacting us at 530-885-8081. You can also look at the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is situated outside your house. This sticker will include information on what model of refrigerant your AC has.
Freon, which is also known as R-22, has chlorine. Scientists consider R-22 to be bad for the earth’s ozone layer and one that contributes to global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which regulates 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 operating fine, you can continue to run it. With regular air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your air conditioning to work around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy notes that substituting a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on annual cooling costs!
If you don’t install a new air conditioner, it may cause difficulties if you require air conditioning repair down the road, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs could be higher-priced, because only small levels of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is accessible.
With the end of R-22, many new air conditioners now use Puron®. Also known as R-410A, this refrigerant was developed to keep the ozone layer strong. As it calls for a varying pressure level, it isn’t compatible with air conditioners that use R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the likelihood to lead to global warming. As a consequence, it might also ultimately be discontinued. Although it hasn’t been mandated yet for residential air conditioners, it’s expected sometime this decade.
What Refrigerant Will Replace R-410A?
In preparation of the end, some companies have started using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant rates low for global warming possibility—approximately one-third less than R-410A. And it also decreases energy use by approximately 10%, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fourth Assessment Report. That’s savings that may be passed on to you through your cooling bills.
Forster Heating Can Provide Support with All Your Air Conditioning Needs
In summary, the changes to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t affect you a whole lot until you need repairs. But as we discussed previously, repairs connected to refrigerant might be more costly due to the limited quantities on hand.
Not to mention, your air conditioner typically needs repair at the worst time, often on the muggiest day when we’re experiencing lots of other appointments for AC repair.
If your air conditioner requires a phased out refrigerant or is more than 15 years old, we advise getting an up-to-date, energy-efficient air conditioner. This delivers a hassle-free summer and may even decrease your cooling costs, especially if you choose an ENERGY STAR®-rated model. Plus, Forster Heating offers many financing programs to make your new air conditioner work with your budget. Contact us at 530-885-8081 to begin right away with a free estimate.