You might not think much about how your air conditioner works, but it relies on refrigerant to keep your house 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 require R-22, R-410A or R-32 refrigerant. We’ll discuss the differences and which air conditioner refrigerants are being phased out in Shamokin and Sunbury, as well as how these phaseouts affect you.
What’s R-22 and Why Is It Discontinued?
If your air conditioner was put in before 2010, it possibly contains Freon®. You can learn if your air conditioner uses it by contacting us at 570-648-0748. You can also examine the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is found outside your home. This sticker will include info on what model of refrigerant your AC uses.
Freon, which is also known as R-22, has chlorine. Scientists consider Freon to be harmful to the earth’s ozone layer and one that contributes to global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which manages refrigerants in the United States, banned 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 operating fine, you can continue to run it. With regular air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your system to work around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy reports that substituting a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on annual cooling expenses!
If you don’t replace your air conditioner, it can cause difficulties if you need air conditioning repair in the future, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs could be more expensive, as only reduced quantities of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is on hand.
With the phaseout of R-22, a lot of new air conditioners now use Puron®. Also called R-410A, this refrigerant was created to keep the ozone layer healthy. As it calls for an incompatible pressure level, it doesn’t work with air conditioners that need R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the possibility to create global warming. As a consequence, it could also ultimately be ended. Although it hasn’t been mandated yet for residential air conditioners, it’s likely sometime this decade.
What Refrigerant Will Take the Place of R-410A?
In preparation of the end, some manufacturers have initiated using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant ranks low for global warming possibility—approximately 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 may be passed on to you through your energy bills.
LTS Plumbing & Heating Inc. Can Help with All Your Air Conditioning Needs
In summary, the alterations to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t concern you very much until you require repairs. But as we went over earlier, repairs connected to refrigerant may be pricier since there are the low levels available.
Aside from that, your air conditioner typically malfunctions at the worst time, often on the warmest day when we’re getting lots of other requests for AC repair.
If your air conditioner relies on an outdated refrigerant or is getting old, we advise installing an up-to-date, energy-efficient air conditioner. This provides a trouble-free summer and could even decrease your cooling expenses, especially if you select an ENERGY STAR®-rated air conditioner. Plus, LTS Plumbing & Heating Inc. provides many financing programs to make your new air conditioner even more affordable. Contact us at 570-648-0748 to get started right away with a free estimate.