Will the Phase Out of R22 Freon Refrigerant Affect Your HVAC System?
The Refrigerant Change Means a Choice for Users of Older Air Conditioners
You have probably heard that the former HVAC industry standard R22 refrigerant – also known as Freon – is being phased out worldwide due to its harmful effects on the ozone layer. As per the US Environmental Protection Agency, manufacturing or importing R22 refrigerant is illegal in the United States as of January 1, 2020 – except for continued servicing needs of existing equipment. As a result of the phase out of R22 Freon refrigerant, manufacturers of HVAC equipment redesigned their systems to accommodate R410A, a chlorine-free refrigerant.
What Refrigerant Is in My Cooling System?
If your air conditioner or heat pump was built and installed before January 1, 2010, there’s a good chance that it uses R22 refrigerant. The refrigerant in your system is the fluid that flows inside the coils in your equipment. Your equipment may have a label that identifies the type of refrigerant type used, but it’s a good idea to ask the trained professionals at Bi-County Inc for confirmation.
If you rely on a cooling/heating system that uses R22 refrigerant you may be in for a surprise during your next service visit. Of course, continued use of your air conditioner or heat pump system using R22 refrigerant is allowed. However, it does mean that if your system needs a repair that involves refrigerant, you may have to decide between a hefty bill and a system replacement.
What Are the Options If My Home’s HVAC Uses R22?
The ban doesn’t require you to replace a functioning R22 system. However, you may need to evaluate your options if your air conditioning or heat pump system fails or requires emergency repairs.
OPTION 1: REPAIR
Even though OPTION 1 may sound like a more stress-free solution, the price of R22 refrigerant is subject to shrinking supply. While R-22 remains available for servicing equipment made before 2010, it is important to know that supplies of R-22 will become more limited and the price of this refrigerant may increase. But keep in mind that some problems can actually be relatively easy to fix. Electrical issues often fall into this category. And if your system is making so much noise that you’re afraid it’s about to die, the news may not be as bad as you think. You may just need a Bi-County technician to do some AC system maintenance or redesign work.
OPTION 2: REPLACE
Are you hoping that your AC can get through just one more season without having to replace it? If so, you may want to consider OPTION 2 instead of putting money into your existing equipment. As the supply of R-22 becomes limited, you may end up paying more for a repair that requires R22 refrigerant than a down payment on a new AC system. Replacing your faulty system now allows you to proactively choose new equipment without the urgency of living in a hot or cold house. Let us tell you about the many new features and benefits available today that weren’t available when your current system was installed.
Whether you choose OPTION 1 or OPTION 2 to solve the phase out of R22 Freon refrigerant, you should use the expertise of a licensed and experienced HVAC dealer like Bi-County Inc to provide routine maintenance. Routine professional maintenance services helps your heating and cooling system to operate at its designed efficiency level and alerts you to small, fixable issues before they may become expensive problems.
Trust Bi-County Inc for HVAC Installation, Replacement & Repairs
So for the time being, you can still get reclaimed R22 and fix a broken system, but the skyrocketing cost of the refrigerant as availability decreases will mean a very expensive repair bill. Is it worthwhile to pour so much into a system in poor condition that must be replaced soon anyway? That’s the choice you’ll need to make… For over 50 years, Bi-County Inc has been keeping the residents of the Bucks and Montgomery County communities cool and their air conditioners working properly and reliably. Click to contact us for more information on the refrigerants used in air conditioning system maintenance and what the new refrigerant changes will mean for your cooling system.