You might not think often about how your air conditioner operates, but it depends on refrigerant to keep your residence cool. This refrigerant is controlled by environmental laws, because of the chemicals it contains.
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 Lawrence, plus 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 possibly contains Freon®. You can learn if your air conditioner has it by reaching us at 785-269-0465. You can also examine the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is located outside your residence. This sticker will include info on what kind of refrigerant your AC needs.
Freon, which is also referred to as R-22, contains chlorine. Scientists consider this chemical to be bad for the earth’s ozone layer and one that leads to global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which governs refrigerants in the United States, barred its manufacture 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 cooling correctly, you can continue to keep it. With yearly air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your AC to work around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy says that replacing 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 can lead to an issue if you have to have air conditioning repair later on, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs can be more expensive, since only small amounts of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is available.
With the phaseout of R-22, a lot of new air conditioners now have Puron®. Also called R-410A, this refrigerant was made to keep the ozone layer healthy. Because it needs an incompatible pressure level, it doesn’t work with air conditioners that rely on R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the likelihood to lead to global warming. As a result, it may also eventually be discontinued. Although it hasn’t been mandated yet for residential air conditioners, it’s anticipated sometime this decade.
What Refrigerant Will Take Over R-410A?
In preparation of the discontinuation, some manufacturers have initiated using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant is classified low for global warming potential—approximately 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 could be passed on to you through your energy bills.
Scott Temperature Can Assist with All Your Air Conditioning Needs
In summary, the modifications to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t concern you greatly until you need repairs. But as we talked about earlier, refrigerant repairs can be more costly due to the restricted levels on hand.
In addition to that, your air conditioner usually stops working at the worst time, often on the hottest day when we’re experiencing many other appointments for AC repair.
If your air conditioner relies on a discontinued refrigerant or is aging, we recommend upgrading to an up-to-date, energy-efficient air conditioner. This ensures a hassle-free summer and could even decrease your utility bills, especially if you select an ENERGY STAR®-rated model. Plus, Scott Temperature provides many financing programs to make your new air conditioner fit your budget. Contact us at 785-269-0465 to get started right away with a free estimate.