You might not think a lot about how your air conditioner works, but it needs refrigerant to keep your residence cold. This refrigerant is controlled by environmental laws, since it contains chemicals.
Depending on when your air conditioner was put in, it may require R-22, R-410A or R-32 refrigerant. We’ll review the differences and which air conditioner refrigerants are being phased out in Albuquerque, in addition to 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 likely contains Freon®. You can find out if your air conditioner has it by reaching us at 505-445-1250. You can also look at the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is situated outside your residence. This sticker will include information on what model of refrigerant your AC uses.
Freon, which is also referred to as R-22, contains chlorine. Scientists consider R-22 to be harmful to the earth’s ozone layer and one that leads to global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which manages refrigerants in the United States, banned 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 as designed, you can continue to keep it. With regular air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your air conditioning to operate around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy notes that substituting a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on yearly cooling costs!
If you don’t replace your air conditioner, it might lead to difficulties if you require air conditioning repair in the future, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs might be more expensive, because only reduced levels of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is accessible.
With the end of R-22, a lot of new air conditioners now rely on Puron®. Also known as R-410A, this refrigerant was developed to keep the ozone layer strong. As it needs an incompatible pressure level, it doesn’t match air conditioners that need R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the potential to create global warming. As a result, it could also sometime be phased out. Although it hasn’t been disclosed yet for residential air conditioners, it’s likely sometime this decade.
What Refrigerant Will Take the Place of R-410A?
In preparation of the phaseout, some manufacturers have initiated using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant ranks low for global warming likelihood—about one-third less than R-410A. And it also reduces energy expenditure by about 10%, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fourth Assessment Report. That’s savings that could be forwarded on to you through your utility costs.
I-Deal HVAC Can Help with All Your Air Conditioning Needs
In summary, the changes to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t concern you very much until you need repairs. But as we went over earlier, refrigerant-related repairs may be more costly since there are the reduced quantities on hand.
Aside from that, your air conditioner typically malfunctions at the worst time, frequently on the hottest day when we’re experiencing many other requests for AC repair.
If your air conditioner uses a phased out refrigerant or is getting old, we recommend installing a modern, energy-efficient air conditioner. This provides a trouble-free summer and might even decrease your electrical bills, especially if you choose an ENERGY STAR®-rated model. Plus, I-Deal HVAC offers many financing solutions to make your new air conditioner fit your budget. Contact us at 505-445-1250 to get started right away with a free estimate.