What is R22 – And Why Is It Being Phased Out?
How long have you been using the same air conditioning unit? If it’s been with you for more than 10 years, there’s a possibility that it still utilizes R22 refrigerant. And if it does, you have to be aware that it’s being phased out because it’s harmful to the environment—contributing to the thinning of the ozone layer, in particular.
Okay, don’t panic. In this article, we are going to learn more about refrigerants, why R22 is being phased out, and what could be a better alternative to this coolant. This aims to guide you in making the best decision for your HVAC system and save you time, money, and effort if you decide to purchase and install a new cooling system.
Wait, What is R22?
To start, let’s discuss what R22 means. Commonly referred to as “Freon,” this refrigerant is a chemical used in air conditioners and heat pumps to cool your home or office. For years, it has gained popularity and has been used in homes and businesses alike. However, in 2010, due to it being a hydrofluorocarbon, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) flagged the installation of R22 on new AC systems. As of January 1, 2020, the US EPA banned the production and import of R22 because of its health and environmental impact when released into the air.
It is to be noted that there are still air conditioning units that use R22. There’s even a possibility that you’re using one. With supplies and AC parts getting limited availability and production being discontinued, HVAC technicians make the most of their resources and access existing recycled or recovered R22 supplies. With all these in mind, it is probably high time to prepare for the transition to a more environmentally-friendly R-22 replacement, such as R410A.
How Do I Know if My Air Conditioning Unit Uses R22?
We all have our own fields of expertise. But we can all agree that not everyone is well-versed in terms of home appliances, particularly the AC unit. So, if you say that you don’t know if your AC unit is using R22, that’s fine.
But knowing the implications that R22 brings, it is probably high time that you get to know a little more about your HVAC system. If your air conditioner was installed before the year 2010, there’s a higher possibility that it’s still running on R22 — even if it still works well up until now. And even if you’ve installed new units, there might still be a slight chance that they’re using R22, so it’s still best to confirm. How? Keep reading.
- Go over the user’s manual.
Try to recall where you placed your AC unit’s manual. Everything that you need to know about your A/C unit is there. Consult your manual and check if it is labeled as R22 or HCFC-22.
- Check the air conditioning unit’s nameplate.
Give your AC unit a closer look. Head outside and look for the system’s outdoor condenser. The specs of the unit are usually listed on the nameplate, including the refrigerant it uses.
- Call a Las Vegas AC repair professional.
Again, not everyone is an expert on this matter—and that’s okay. If you want to be certain, you can always call Fast Affordable Air for an HVAC inspection. Our team of skilled technicians would be happy to assist and inspect your AC unit to confirm whether it’s still using R22. Aside from that, they are also capable of AC repair, installation, maintenance, and other HVAC system services.
Give us a call now and we will walk you through everything that you need to know about your AC unit. If there are problems with your AC in Las Vegas, our technicians will immediately check it and make sure that your cooling system will perform at its best once again.