Are Air Conditioning Refrigerants Being Phased Out?

August 05, 2020

You might not think much about how your air conditioner functions, but it needs refrigerant to keep your home cool. This refrigerant is subject to environmental laws, as it contains chemicals.

Based on when your air conditioner was put in, it may need R-22, R-410A or R-32 refrigerant. We’ll discuss the differences and which air conditioner refrigerants are being phased out in Cedar Rapids, plus how these phaseouts impact you.

What’s R-22 and Why is It Phased Out?

If your air conditioner was put in before 2010, it possibly uses Freon®. You can learn if your air conditioner has it by contacting us at 319-208-3295. 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 kind of refrigerant your AC needs.

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 regulates refrigerants in the United States, barred its production and import in January 2020.

I Have a R-22 Air Conditioner. Should I Replace It?

It varies. If your air conditioning is running fine, you can continue to use it. With yearly air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your AC 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 summertime cooling bills!

If you don’t replace your air conditioner, it might cause a problem if you have to have air conditioning repair later on, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs can be higher-priced, as only limited quantities of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is on hand.

With the phaseout of R-22, most new air conditioners now have Puron®. Also called R-410A, this refrigerant was made to keep the ozone layer strong. As it calls for an incompatible pressure level, it doesn’t match air conditioners that need R-22 for cooling.

However, Puron still has the likelihood to create global warming. As a result, it could also eventually be discontinued. Although it hasn’t been announced yet for residential air conditioners, it’s anticipated sometime this decade.

What Refrigerant Will Take Over 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 likelihood—about one-third less than R-410A. And it also reduces energy consumption by about 10%, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fourth Assessment Report. That’s savings that may be sent on to you through your cooling costs.

Ilten's Incorporated Can Provide Support with All Your Air Conditioning Needs

In brief, the modifications to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t affect you greatly until you require repairs. But as we reviewed earlier, refrigerant-related repairs could be pricier since there are the restricted quantities that are accessible.

Aside from that, your air conditioner typically breaks down at the worst time, typically on the hottest day when we’re experiencing lots of other calls for AC repair.

If your air conditioner relies on a discontinued refrigerant or is aging, we suggest installing a new, energy-efficient air conditioner. This ensures a stress-free summer and may even reduce your electrical expenses, especially if you select an ENERGY STAR®-rated air conditioner. Plus, Ilten's Incorporated provides many financing options to make your new air conditioner fit your budget. Contact us at 319-208-3295 to begin right away with a free estimate.