Air conditioner service

How Does Air Conditioning Refrigerant Phaseout Affect Me?

You might not think a lot about how your air conditioner operates, but it depends on refrigerant to keep your house fresh. This refrigerant is bound by environmental rules, because of the chemicals it contains.

Subject to 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 Tucson, in addition to how these phaseouts affect you.

What’s R-22 and Why is It Phased Out?

If your air conditioner was added before 2010, it probably contains Freon®. You can learn if your air conditioner contains it by calling us at 520-201-3871. You can also look at the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is situated outside your residence. This sticker will contain details on what type of refrigerant your AC uses.

Freon, which is also referred to as R-22, has chlorine. Scientists consider Freon to be damaging to the earth’s ozone layer and one that prompts global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which controls refrigerants in the United States, banned its production and import in January 2020.

Should I Replace My R-22 Air Conditioner?

It varies. If your air conditioning is operating correctly, you can continue to keep it. With routine air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your air conditioning to run 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 bills!

If you don’t get a new air conditioner, it might create an issue if you have to have air conditioning repair in the future, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs might be higher-priced, as only small levels of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is accessible.

With the discontinuation of R-22, many new air conditioners now rely on Puron®. Also called R-410A, this refrigerant was created 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 likelihood to create global warming. As a consequence, it could also eventually be discontinued. Although it hasn’t been communicated yet for residential air conditioners, it’s likely sometime this decade.

What Refrigerant Will Replace R-410A?

In preparation of the phaseout, some brands have started using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant rates low for global warming likelihood—about one-third less than R-410A. And it also decreases 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 electrical costs.

Ambient Air Can Provide Support with All Your Air Conditioning Needs

In brief, the changes to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t impact you greatly until you need repairs. But as we discussed beforehand, repairs connected to refrigerant may be pricier since there are the reduced quantities available.

In addition to that, your air conditioner typically stops working at the worst time, typically on the warmest day when we’re experiencing many other appointments for AC repair.

If your air conditioner relies on a phased out refrigerant or is getting old, we recommend getting an up-to-date, energy-efficient air conditioner. This ensures a hassle-free summer and may even lower your utility bills, especially if you select an ENERGY STAR®-rated system. Plus, Ambient Air has many financing solutions to make your new air conditioner even more affordable. Contact us at 520-201-3871 to get started now with a free estimate.

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