Is R-22 being discontinued as a refrigerant?
Yes. As of January 2010, the refrigerant R-22 (what consumers call Freon®) is no longer allowed to be used in the manufacturing of new equipment. R-22 has been used as the standard refrigerant for many years but has been found to be harmful to our planet due to its ozone-depleting properties. All new air conditioners and heat pumps use R-410A, which is more environmentally sound.
R-22 is still the most commonly used refrigerant in existing air conditioning equipment in residential homes today. However, per the Montreal Protocol, caps have been established to eliminate the production of R-22. In 2004, there was a 35% reduction; in 2010, there was a 65% reduction; in 2015, a 90% reduction; and finally, in 2020, a 99.5% reduction in the production of R-22. This means that if demand for R-22 is still high during each of these reduction phases, the price per pound of R-22 could potentially skyrocket.
If you are considering replacing your existing air conditioner, most higher efficiency products have already made the switch to R-410A, so you won’t have to worry about which refrigerant you are using. If your unit is older, you may want to look into what it is using and considering switching to R-410A.
For air conditioning services in the Beaver Valley area, contact us online today.