Can I Still Use R-22 Refrigerant?

The standard R-22 refrigerant that older AC systems and heat pumps have relied on will soon be illegal to produce or import in the US. This ozone-depleting substance is being phased out in favor of more eco-friendly options. Learn how to keep your Celebration, Florida, home cool if you have a system that uses R-22 refrigerant.

The 2010 Ban on R-22 Refrigerant

In 2010, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) banned the import and production of R-22 refrigerant, also known as Freon, for new HVAC systems. However, this refrigerant has still been permitted for the ongoing service needs of existing systems that were reliant on this refrigerant.

At the same time, the EPA banned the installation and manufacture of new air conditioners and heat pumps that relied on R-22. System manufacturers responded by creating equipment that can run on R410A refrigerant instead.

The 2020 Ban on R-22

As of January 1, 2020 a new ban will go into effect for the import and manufacture of all R-22 refrigerant. There is no longer an exception for existing systems. You are not banned from continuing to use a system that relies on this refrigerant, but obtaining the necessary refrigerant to run it will become more difficult. You will have to rely on existing supplies, which will likely increase in price as they dwindle.

What to Do for Your System

If your air conditioner or heat pump still uses this banned substance, you may want to consider budgeting for a replacement in the coming years. As the price increases, you might find that simply installing a newer system is more affordable. A new air conditioner or heat pump will provide perks like better comfort and energy efficiency.

If you’re considering a new AC installation so you can stop using hazardous R-22 refrigerant, we can help. Contact our team at Frank’s Air Conditioning at (407) 490-2070 to learn more.

Image provided by iStock

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