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R-22 Refrigerant, Its Slow Phaseout and How It Affects Your West Texas A/C

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Do you know what makes your air conditioner tick? If R-22 refrigerant is responsible for your system's cooling power, you should be keeping tabs on its government-mandated phaseout. To get you up to speed, here's a quick look at why R-22 is being phased out, how it could affect you, and what your options are for the future. 

Why is R-22 refrigerant being phased out?

For nearly four decades, R-22 was the most commonly used refrigerant in cooling systems. Unfortunately, due to its chlorine content, R-22 contributes to the depletion of Earth's ozone layer. It is because of this that the Environmental Protection Association (EPA) has called for a gradual phaseout of the cooling agent. The first step of the ban took place in 2010, with the halting of the manufacture of R-22-reliant air conditioning systems and other cooling equipment. Since that time, the amount of new R-22 refrigerant that has been allowed to be produced each year has decreased significantly. The ultimate goal is that the production of R-22 will be completely phased out by the year 2020. 

How will the phaseout affect me?

If your air conditioner was installed before 2010 and utilizes R-22 as its refrigerant, you may begin to notice an increase in the costs of having your system serviced or repaired. As the supplies of R-22 continue to shrink each year, the price that your HVAC contractor must pay to obtain it will only go up. This means that even seemingly simplistic problems or A/C maintenance checkups could quickly lead to very expensive customer invoices.

What are my options?

In order to avoid expensive problems like these, you may want to seriously consider investing in a new air conditioning system. The cooling equipment that is being manufactured today utilizes R-410A as its refrigerant. Because R-410A doesn't contain chlorine, it is considered to be more "ozone friendly". In this way, you will also be doing your part to help protect the environment. 

To learn more about the R-22 refrigerant phaseout, or to receive a quote on upgrading your air conditioner, find your local Texas Air Comfort contractor today. 

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