You might not think much about how your air conditioner functions, but it depends on refrigerant to keep your house cool. This refrigerant is controlled by environmental regulation, as it contains chemicals.
Subject to when your air conditioner was added to your home, it may need R-22, R-410A or R-32 refrigerant. We’ll discuss the differences and which air conditioner refrigerants are being phased out in Hudsonville, plus how these phaseouts impact you.
What’s R-22 and Why Is It Phased Out?
If your air conditioner was installed before 2010, it possibly contains Freon®. You can find out if your air conditioner uses it by contacting us at (616) 319-1436. You can also inspect the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is located outside your residence. This sticker will include information on what kind of refrigerant your AC needs.
Freon, which is also referred to as R-22, has chlorine. Scientists consider R-22 to be bad for the earth’s ozone layer and one that results in global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which controls refrigerants in the United States, barred its creation and import in January 2020.
Should I Replace My R-22 Air Conditioner?
It differs. If your air conditioning is cooling properly, you can continue to run it. With yearly air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your air conditioning to last 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 costs!
If you don’t get a new air conditioner, it may create an issue if you have to have air conditioning repair down the road, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs can be higher-priced, as only limited quantities of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is accessible.
With the discontinuation of R-22, a lot of new air conditioners now have Puron®. Also referred to as R-410A, this refrigerant was developed to keep the ozone layer healthy. Because it needs a different pressure level, it doesn’t match air conditioners that need R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the possibility to contribute to global warming. Because of that, it may also sometime be phased out. Although it hasn’t been mandated yet for residential air conditioners, it’s expected sometime this decade.
What Refrigerant Will Replace R-410A?
In preparation of the discontinuation, some brands have initiated using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant ranks low for global warming potential—approximately one-third less than R-410A. And it also lowers energy consumption by about 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 utility bills.
West Michigan Heating & Air Conditioning Services 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 need repairs. But as we discussed beforehand, refrigerant-related repairs might be pricier because of the restricted levels that are accessible.
Not to mention, your air conditioner often breaks down at the worst time, typically on the hottest day when we’re receiving a lot of other calls for AC repair.
If your air conditioner relies on a discontinued refrigerant or is getting old, we advise upgrading to a modern, energy-efficient air conditioner. This provides a stress-free summer and can even reduce your electrical bills, especially if you get an ENERGY STAR®-rated model. Plus, West Michigan Heating & Air Conditioning Services has many financing solutions to make your new air conditioner fit your budget. Contact us at (616) 319-1436 to begin right away with a free estimate.