The refrigerant in your AC or heat pump is the fluid that flows inside the coils of the equipment. The compressor, condenser and evaporator cause the refrigerant to transform physically between liquid and gas, which transfers to coils changing the temperature of that air. Eventually, this cooler air makes its way to the rooms in your home.
Beginning in 2020, the government stopped production of R22 refrigerant in the United States. You are, however, allowed to continue to use HVAC equipment in your home, like an air conditioner or heat pump that uses R22. But, if your system uses R22, it won’t be able to be recharged or repaired once the R22 supply runs out.
Why is R22 Refrigerant Banned from being Produced?
R22 gas is an ozone-depleting substance that has been proven to have caused significant damage. Over time, this has allowed an elevated level of UV radiation to reach the surface of the earth.
How Do I Know if My AC or Heat Pump Uses R22 Refrigerant?
As a general rule, any heat pump or air conditioner that was built and installed before January 1, 2010, likely uses R22 refrigerant. You could grab a flashlight and look on the outside of your unit. You may be able to find a label that identifies the type of refrigerant it uses. But, it is best to ask a licensed professional for confirmation to be sure.
So, How Does the R22 Ban Affect Me?
For the past few years, there has been a limited supply of R22 available for repairs. As time went on, the supply ran low, the price went up, and it is not always available at suppliers. Because there is no more R22 being produced or imported, it may not be possible to repair existing equipment if refrigerant is needed. Unfortunately, that means current R22 air conditioning systems must be replaced if they need more refrigerant.
Save the Environment and Keep Cool
According to the EPA, R22 and other HCFC refrigerants are harmful to the planet and the equipment they are used in are less efficient which can leave you feeling uncomfortable, sticky and warm. You and your family deserve better. Help make the planet and your home a healthier, more comfortable place with a professionally installed, energy-efficient R22-free air conditioner or heat pump from Wes Heating & Cooling We’ll also properly dispose of any unused R22 so it won’t harm anyone else.
If you have questions about the R22 ban and how it affects your older air conditioner, please reach out to our team of caring HVAC professionals. We are more than happy to answer any questions you have. If you’re having issues with any of your HVAC equipment, whether it’s the AC, heat pump, or the furnace, give us a call at 724-667-9377!