You might not think often about how your air conditioner works, but it depends on refrigerant to keep your residence fresh. This refrigerant is subject to environmental rules, as 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 Des Moines, plus 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 put in before 2010, it probably has Freon®. You can discover if your air conditioner contains it by calling us at 515-344-3579. You can also inspect the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is situated outside your house. This sticker will contain details on what kind of refrigerant your AC has.
Freon, which is also referred to as R-22, has chlorine. Scientists consider Freon 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, outlawed its manufacture and import in January 2020.
I Have a R-22 Air Conditioner. Should I Replace It?
It differs. If your air conditioning is running as designed, you can continue to keep it. With yearly air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your system to last around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy notes that removing a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on summertime cooling costs!
If you don’t get a new air conditioner, it may lead to an issue if you have to have air conditioning repair later on, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs can be higher-priced, as only small quantities of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is accessible.
With the phaseout of R-22, many new air conditioners now use Puron®. Also referred to as R-410A, this refrigerant was created to keep the ozone layer healthy. Because it needs a varying pressure level, it isn’t compatible with air conditioners that need R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the possibility to lead to global warming. As a result, it might also ultimately be phased out. Although it hasn’t been communicated yet for residential air conditioners, it’s likely sometime this decade.
What Refrigerant Will Replace R-410A?
In preparation of the phaseout, some manufacturers have started using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant rates low for global warming potential—around one-third less than R-410A. And it also lowers 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 utility bills.
Heartland Heating & Cooling Can Assist with All Your Air Conditioning Needs
In short, the changes to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t affect you a whole lot until you need repairs. But as we went over previously, refrigerant repairs might be more expensive due to the low quantities on hand.
Aside from that, your air conditioner usually stops working at the worst time, often on the hottest day when we’re experiencing lots of other requests for AC repair.
If your air conditioner uses a phased out refrigerant or is getting old, we recommend upgrading to a new, energy-efficient air conditioner. This ensures a stress-free summer and may even decrease your electrical bills, especially if you get an ENERGY STAR®-rated air conditioner. Plus, Heartland Heating & Cooling has many financing programs to make your new air conditioner even more affordable. Contact us at 515-344-3579 to begin today with a free estimate.