You might not think a lot about how your air conditioner functions, but it depends on refrigerant to keep your residence 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 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 Rapid City, plus how these phaseouts have on influence on you.
What’s R-22 and Why is It Phased Out?
If your air conditioner was added before 2010, it possibly has Freon®. You can learn if your air conditioner contains it by contacting us at 605-206-3915. You can also check the name plate on your air conditioner condenser, which is found outside your residence. This sticker will contain information on what model of refrigerant your AC needs.
Freon, which is also referred to as R-22, includes chlorine. Scientists consider R-22 to be damaging to the earth’s ozone layer and one that leads to global warming. The Environmental Protection Agency, which oversees refrigerants in the United States, banned its creation and import in January 2020.
Should I Replace My R-22 Air Conditioner?
It differs. If your air conditioning is cooling correctly, you can continue to use it. With regular air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your system to last around 15–20 years. However, the Department of Energy notes that replacing a 10-year-old air conditioner could save you 20–40% on yearly cooling expenses!
If you don’t get a new air conditioner, it could lead to an issue if you have to have air conditioning repair later on, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs might be more expensive, since only small levels of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is available.
With the discontinuation of R-22, many new air conditioners now have Puron®. Also known as R-410A, this refrigerant was made to keep the ozone layer in good shape. Since it calls for a different pressure level, it doesn’t work with air conditioners that need R-22 for cooling.
However, Puron still has the possibility to create global warming. Because of that, it could also eventually be discontinued. Although it hasn’t been communicated yet for residential air conditioners, it’s anticipated sometime this decade.
What Refrigerant Will Take the Place of R-410A?
In preparation of the phaseout, some manufacturers have begun using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant ranks low for global warming potential—about one-third less than R-410A. And it also reduces energy expenditure by approximately 10%, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fourth Assessment Report. That’s savings that might be sent on to you through your energy costs.
Street Heating and Cooling Can Provide Support with All Your Air Conditioning Needs
In summary, the modifications to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t affect you a whole lot until you require repairs. But as we mentioned earlier, refrigerant-related repairs may be pricier due to the low quantities on hand.
In addition to that, your air conditioner often malfunctions at the worst time, frequently on the hottest day when we’re experiencing many other calls for AC repair.
If your air conditioner uses an outdated refrigerant or is aging, we advise installing a modern, energy-efficient air conditioner. This delivers a stress-free summer and may even reduce your utility expenses, especially if you choose an ENERGY STAR®-rated air conditioner. Plus, Street Heating and Cooling provides many financing solutions to make your new air conditioner work with your budget. Contact us at 605-206-3915 to begin now with a free estimate.