You may have heard that they changed the refrigerant used in air conditioners several years ago. Where once they used R22, they now use R410A. Why was this change made, and what are the differences between R22 and R410A refrigerants?
R22 was used as the refrigerant in air conditioners for many years. However, it was discovered that as it’s a hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC), it contributes to the depletion of the ozone. It is often referred to as Freon, as that was the most popular brand producing this refrigerant.
The problems with R22 were discovered in 1992. It took until 2010 for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to begin phasing out its use. Air conditioners made after this year typically don’t use R22. It was made illegal to produce this refrigerant in 2020.
Can You Still Get R22?
If you have an old air conditioner that uses R22, you may or may not be able to have its refrigerant charged should it leak. Some HVAC companies can’t find a supply of it. If they can, it is very expensive as supplies are dwindling. Given all the advantages of upgrading to a new air conditioner, you’re probably better off replacing an old air conditioner rather than paying for a recharge of R22.
R410A is a refrigerant that doesn’t have the environmental problems of R22. It’s a hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) that has no effect on the ozone layer and became the standard for air conditioners in 2015. If your AC system was produced between 2010 and 2015, you should check which type of refrigerant it uses.
It’s also a refrigerant that is better in other ways. It transfers heat better than R22, which means it’s much less likely that your compressor will overheat. R410A is also more efficient, which means lower energy bills.
Big Fish AC & Heating, LLC in Lumberton, TX, installs air conditioners that use R410A. We also install, repair, and maintain heaters and air conditioners. Other products and services we provide include ductless systems and indoor air quality solutions. Give us a call today to find out how we can help you.