You might not think often about how your air conditioner operates, but it relies on refrigerant to keep your house fresh. This refrigerant is controlled by environmental rules, because of the chemicals it contains.
Based on when your air conditioner was installed, it may use R-22, R-410A or R-32 refrigerant. We’ll discuss the differences and which air conditioner refrigerants are being phased out in Manassas, plus how these phaseouts affect you.
What’s R-22 and Why is It Phased Out?
If your air conditioner was put in before 2010, it possibly contains Freon®. You can discover if your air conditioner contains it by reaching us at 703-260-1148. 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 type of refrigerant your AC has.
Freon, which is also referred to as R-22, includes chlorine. Scientists consider Freon to be harmful to the earth’s ozone layer and one that prompts 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 depends. If your air conditioning is running fine, you can continue to use it. With routine air conditioner maintenance, you can expect your AC 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 annual cooling bills!
If you don’t replace your air conditioner, it might create an issue if you require air conditioning repair in the future, specifically for refrigerant. Repairs may be pricier, since only reduced amounts of recycled and reclaimed R-22 is available.
With the discontinuation of R-22, a lot of new air conditioners now use Puron®. Also referred to as R-410A, this refrigerant was made to keep the ozone layer healthy. Because 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 likelihood to create global warming. Because of that, it could also ultimately be discontinued. 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 companies have initiated using R-32 in new air conditioners. This refrigerant is classified low for global warming potential—around one-third less than R-410A. And it also decreases energy expenditure by about 10%, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fourth Assessment Report. That’s savings that could be forwarded on to you through your energy expenses.
Air-Right Energy Design, Inc. Can Provide Support with All Your Air Conditioning Needs
In short, the modifications to air conditioner refrigerant probably won’t impact you a whole lot until you need repairs. But as we went over beforehand, refrigerant repairs could be more costly due to the low levels that are accessible.
Aside from that, your air conditioner usually malfunctions at the worst time, often on the muggiest day when we’re experiencing a lot of other requests for AC repair.
If your air conditioner requires a phased out refrigerant or is getting old, we recommend installing an up-to-date, energy-efficient air conditioner. This delivers a hassle-free summer and might even lower your utility expenses, especially if you get an ENERGY STAR®-rated system. Plus, Air-Right Energy Design, Inc. offers many financing solutions to make your new air conditioner work with your budget. Contact us at 703-260-1148 to get started right away with a free estimate.