You might not think much about how your air conditioner operates, but it has to have refrigerant to keep your residence cool. This refrigerant is subject to environmental rules, because of the chemicals it contains.
Depending on when your air conditioner was installed, 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 Crystal and Twin Cities, plus how these phaseouts have on influence on you.
What’s R-22 and Why is It Phased Out?
If your air conditioner was installed before 2010, it likely contains Freon®. You can discover if your air conditioner uses it by calling us at 763-535-2000. You can also look at the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is located outside your residence. This sticker will contain details on what kind of refrigerant your AC has.
Freon, which is also called R-22, contains chlorine. Scientists consider this chemical to be bad for the earth’s ozone layer and one that prompts global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which manages refrigerants in the United States, barred its production and import in January 2020.
Should I Replace My R-22 Air Conditioner?
It varies. If your air conditioning is cooling as designed, you can continue to use it. With regular air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your system to operate 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 get a new air conditioner, it can create difficulties if you require air conditioning repair in the future, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs can be higher-priced, since only small levels of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is on hand.
With the discontinuation of R-22, a lot of new air conditioners now use Puron®. Also referred to as R-410A, this refrigerant was made to keep the ozone layer healthy. Because it calls for a varying pressure level, it doesn’t match air conditioners that need R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the possibility to lead to global warming. As a consequence, it might also eventually be discontinued. Although it hasn’t been announced yet for residential air conditioners, it’s expected sometime this decade.
What Refrigerant Will Take the Place of R-410A?
In preparation of the phaseout, some brands have begun using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant rates low for global warming possibility—about one-third less than R-410A. And it also reduces energy expenditure by around 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 expenses.
GV Heating & Air Can Help with All Your Air Conditioning Needs
In brief, the modifications to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t concern you greatly until you require repairs. But as we mentioned beforehand, refrigerant repairs could be more expensive because of the restricted amounts that are accessible.
Aside from that, your air conditioner typically stops working at the worst time, frequently on the hottest day when we’re experiencing a lot of other requests for AC repair.
If your air conditioner uses a discontinued refrigerant or is aging, we suggest installing an up-to-date, energy-efficient air conditioner. This ensures a hassle-free summer and could even lower your energy expenses, especially if you get an ENERGY STAR®-rated model. Plus, GV Heating & Air has many financing options to make your new air conditioner work with your budget. Contact us at 763-535-2000 to begin today with a free estimate.