You might not think often about how your air conditioner works, but it depends on refrigerant to keep your house fresh. This refrigerant is bound by environmental regulation, because of the chemicals it contains.
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 Wisconsin Rapids, plus how these phaseouts have on influence on you.
What’s R-22 and Why is It Discontinued?
If your air conditioner was added before 2010, it possibly contains Freon®. You can find out if your air conditioner has it by calling us at 715-301-0256. You can also look at the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is found outside your house. This sticker will have info on what type of refrigerant your AC uses.
Freon, which is also called R-22, has chlorine. Scientists consider Freon to be harmful to the earth’s ozone layer and one that leads to global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which manages refrigerants in the United States, outlawed its manufacture and import in January 2020.
I Use an Air Conditioner with R-22. Do I Need to Get a New One?
It differs. If your air conditioning is running as designed, you can continue to keep it. With yearly air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your air conditioning to work around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy says that removing a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on annual cooling expenses!
If you keep your air conditioner, it can cause an issue if you require air conditioning repair down the road, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs could be more expensive, as only small quantities of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is on hand.
With the discontinuation of R-22, most new air conditioners now use Puron®. Also known as R-410A, this refrigerant was made to keep the ozone layer in good shape. Since it calls for a varying pressure level, it doesn’t work with air conditioners that need R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the potential to contribute to global warming. As a result, it may also ultimately be phased out. Although it hasn’t been communicated yet for residential air conditioners, it’s anticipated sometime this decade.
What Refrigerant Will Replace R-410A?
In preparation of the phaseout, some companies have initiated using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant ranks low for global warming possibility—around 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 may be passed on to you through your utility bills.
Rapids Sheet Metal Works Inc Can Provide Support with All Your Air Conditioning Needs
In summary, the modifications to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t concern you greatly until you require repairs. But as we talked about previously, refrigerant repairs could be more costly because of the reduced quantities available.
Not to mention, your air conditioner frequently malfunctions at the worst time, often on the muggiest day when we’re experiencing a lot of other calls for AC repair.
If your air conditioner uses an outdated refrigerant or is more than 15 years old, we recommend upgrading to an up-to-date, energy-efficient air conditioner. This ensures a hassle-free summer and might even lower your utility bills, especially if you select an ENERGY STAR®-rated model. Plus, Rapids Sheet Metal Works Inc offers many financing options to make your new air conditioner fit your budget. Contact us at 715-301-0256 to get started right away with a free estimate.