In 2010, manufacturers stopped using R-22 in all new HVAC equipment. This was part of a phase-out that was instituted by the EPA. If you live in Newnan, GA, and your AC uses R-22, there are a few things you need to know.
Older HVAC Systems Use R-22?
Beginning in the 1950s and continuing until 2010, R-22 was the most common kind of refrigerant in residential HVAC systems. The substance is also called HCFC-22 because it’s a hydrochlorofluorocarbon. Over time, scientists began to realize these chemicals deplete the ozone layer. The United States, as well as numerous other countries, collaborated on a plan to reduce their use of ozone-depleting substances in the 11990s, including R-22.
How the R-22 Phase-out Will Effect Homeowners
We are now in the second part of the R-22 phase-out established during the Montreal Protocol. Before 2015, manufacturers could continue to make some components to keep existing systems running. However, that’s no longer the case. Currently, companies can only manufacture and import a limited amount of R-22 to service equipment installed before 2010.
As of January 1, 2020, manufacturing and importing R-22 will be completely banned in the U.S. When that happens, consumers will be forced to rely on stockpiles of reclaimed refrigerant. As the supply decreases, prices are expected to rise. Systems that use R-22 aren’t compatible with alternative refrigerants, so there’s no way to convert them. The best option for those who still have these systems is to focus on maintenance.
R-22 Equipment Maintenance Through the Phase-out
Schedule regular AC tune-ups so that your technician can catch leaks before they require costly repairs. While the new R-410A refrigerant doesn’t damage the ozone layer, it is a powerful greenhouse gas, so maintaining your equipment will still be important for the environment.
If you don’t know whether your system uses the new or old kind of refrigerant, call X-Stream Mechanical Services at (770) 769-1257. Our customer service team will be glad to schedule an air conditioning service visit or answer any questions you may have.