You might not think often about how your air conditioner operates, but it needs refrigerant to keep your residence fresh. This refrigerant is controlled by environmental rules, since it contains chemicals.

Based on when your air conditioner was added to your home, it may require R-22, R-410A or R-32 refrigerant. We’ll go over the differences and which air conditioner refrigerants are being phased out in Frederick, as well as how these phaseouts impact you.

What’s R-22 and Why Is It No Longer Being Made?

If your air conditioner was installed before 2010, it likely has Freon®. You can learn if your air conditioner contains it by calling us at 301-690-0397. You can also inspect the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is found outside your home. This sticker will have info on what kind of refrigerant your AC needs.

Freon, which is also called R-22, includes chlorine. Scientists consider R-22 to be bad for the earth’s ozone layer and one that contributes to global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which controls refrigerants in the United States, outlawed its creation and import in January 2020.

I Have a R-22 Air Conditioner. Should I Replace It?

It varies. If your air conditioning is operating correctly, you can continue to run it. With regular air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your air conditioning to run around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy says that substituting a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on yearly 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 may be higher-priced, because only small quantities of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is on hand.

With the phaseout of R-22, many new air conditioners now use Puron®. Also called R-410A, this refrigerant was created to keep the ozone layer healthy. Since it calls for an incompatible pressure level, it doesn’t work with air conditioners that use R-22 for cooling.

However, Puron still has the potential to contribute to global warming. As a result, it might also sometime 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 phaseout, some manufacturers have started using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant is classified low for global warming likelihood—approximately 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 could be passed on to you through your utility bills.

May's Heating & Air Can Assist with All Your Air Conditioning Needs

In brief, the alterations to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t concern you greatly until you have to have repairs. But as we discussed previously, refrigerant-related repairs may be more costly since there are the reduced levels on hand.

Aside from that, your air conditioner usually breaks down at the worst time, often on the muggiest day when we’re getting many other appointments for AC repair.

If your air conditioner relies on a discontinued refrigerant or is more than 15 years old, we recommend upgrading to an up-to-date, energy-efficient air conditioner. This delivers a hassle-free summer and might even lower your cooling bills, especially if you choose an ENERGY STAR®-rated model. Plus, May's Heating & Air has many financing options to make your new air conditioner fit your budget. Contact us at 301-690-0397 to begin now with a free estimate.