You might not think a lot about how your air conditioner functions, but it relies on refrigerant to keep your residence cold. This refrigerant is bound by environmental regulation, as it contains chemicals.
Based 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 Mankato area, in addition to how these phaseouts impact you.
What’s R-22 and Why Is It Phased Out?
If your air conditioner was put in before 2010, it possibly contains Freon®. You can discover if your air conditioner uses it by calling us at 507-387-6596. You can also examine the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is found outside your residence. This sticker will have info on what model of refrigerant your AC needs.
Freon, which is also called R-22, has chlorine. Scientists consider R-22 to be harmful to the earth’s ozone layer and one that results in global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which controls 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 varies. If your air conditioning is cooling fine, you can continue to use it. With yearly air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your air conditioning to operate around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy reports that removing a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on annual cooling expenses!
If you don’t get a new air conditioner, it might create a problem if you have to have air conditioning repair in the future, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs could be pricier, since only small levels of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is available.
With the discontinuation of R-22, many new air conditioners now rely on Puron®. Also known as R-410A, this refrigerant was created to keep the ozone layer healthy. Since it needs a different pressure level, it doesn’t work with air conditioners that rely on R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the possibility to lead to global warming. As a consequence, it might also eventually be ended. Although it hasn’t been communicated yet for residential air conditioners, it’s expected sometime this decade.
What Refrigerant Will Take Over R-410A?
In preparation of the end, some manufacturers have initiated using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant rates low for global warming potential—about one-third less than R-410A. And it also reduces energy consumption by around 10%, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fourth Assessment Report. That’s savings that might be passed on to you through your utility costs.
Northern Comfort Inc Can Help with All Your Air Conditioning Needs
In short, the changes to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t concern you very much until you require repairs. But as we discussed previously, refrigerant-related repairs might be more costly due to the reduced amounts on hand.
Not to mention, your air conditioner usually breaks down at the worst time, typically on the muggiest day when we’re getting many other appointments for AC repair.
If your air conditioner relies on an outdated refrigerant or is more than 15 years old, we advise getting a modern, energy-efficient air conditioner. This provides a hassle-free summer and could even lower your cooling expenses, especially if you get an ENERGY STAR®-rated air conditioner. Plus, Northern Comfort Inc has many financing solutions to make your new air conditioner fit your budget. Contact us at 507-387-6596 to start right away with a free estimate.