Everyone knows by now that R-22 refrigerant, or Freon, is being phased out to be replaced by R-410A, known as Puron. However, most homeowners are not sure why or to what extent the change will affect them. Besides vaguely knowing that R-22 has been deemed environmentally unsafe because leakage of the refrigerant releases hydrochlorofluorocarbons into the air that deplete the ozone layer, it’s generally understood that R-410A is also more energy efficient because it’s better at absorbing and releasing heat.
How do R-22 and R-410A Compare?
R-22 is less energy efficient, causes damage to the ozone layer, is increasingly more expensive in repairs and will be harder to obtain as it is being phased out.
Meanwhile, R-410A is much more energy efficient, easier on the environment and is approved in newly manufactured air conditioners because they operate with more durable air condition parts, which potentially lengthens the life of the unit.
Is Retro-Fit an Advised Option?
Parts and refrigerant for R-22 and R-410A are not interchangeable or even compatible, so beware of advertisements by retailers about home kits designed to ‘retro-fit’ your R22 unit into an R-410A system.
Attempts at retrofitting may result in further environmental risk and could lessen the performance of your air conditioning unit. Keep in mind that air conditioners are pressurized systems that involve the use of dangerous chemicals, which are best handled by certified professionals.
Repair or Replace?
If your current unit is not in peak condition, the best way to ensure you’ll have the most energy efficient, environmentally compatible unit is to replace your old R-22 dependent system altogether. By upgrading to an R-410A compatible unit, you’ll avoid the headaches of paying more for the repairs on an obsolete system.
Investing in an upgrade to an environmentally safe and energy efficient R-410A unit will give you much more peace of mind and will save you money in the long run.
Feel free to call us for more information on this subject or to schedule an evaluation of your existing system for early replacement consideration. 75 Degrees is an approved vendor for the NV Energy Rebate programs offered for early replacement of R-22 reliant A/C systems.