Unless you are familiar with the HVAC industry, terms like R-22 or Freon may seem like a foreign language. This refrigerant isn’t a product that is thought about often, but it is an important substance used in all residential air conditioners and is fixing to be banned effective January 1, 2020. Our mission is to define these terms for you and to provide you with the appropriate knowledge on how this ban will affect your HVAC system.
What is Freon?
Freon is a chemical gas that is used as a refrigerant in HVAC units that cools the warm air. Although Freon has been used in the HVAC industry since 2003, it is extremely harmful to the environment and the ozone layer.
How is it used in your AC?
There is a constant cycle of hot air in and cold air out that keeps your AC running. This is due to the Freon being moved inside the unit and pressed through the coils until it heats the gas then cooling to a liquid form. The form then absorbs the hot air and pushes the cold air out.
Why is it being phased out?
Freon is a harmful gas that is detrimental to the ozone layer. If you have a coolant leak, that means that your AC will no longer push out the cold air that it should. This allows the Freon to leak out into the air contributing to the ozone depletion.
Starting January 2020, the EPA has decided that Freon will be considered a banned substance. All manufacturing and import of the chemical will be prohibited.
What does this mean for you?
Just because Freon will be banned, that does not mean that you have to get rid of your AC unit if it uses the substance. Any HVAC unit since 2010 should be fine and updated with a legal refrigerant substance. However, if you own an older model you should be aware that it is probably using Freon and we recommend calling your local HVAC dealer to discuss options.
What should I do now?
If there is a coolant leak or your system is not properly functioning, then maintenance will be a little more expensive since obtaining Freon now will be more expensive. But, if your unit is running smoothly then there is no need to change out your system.
Talk to our HVAC specialists if you still have any concerns regarding your HVAC unit. We’ll evaluate your system and consult you on the maintenance and costs of replacing your older system with an updated unit.
To learn more about our Trane products and systems, contact one of our specialists at Air Solutions and we will assist in finding the best unit for you. Servicing Southeast Texas from Beaumont to West Orange, we can get your HVAC systems smarter in no time. Call 409.962.2476 or visit airsolutionstx.com.