All About Refrigerant: R-22 and R-410A
Have you ever wondered what makes your AC system tick? We thought so! R-22 and R-410A refrigerant does this very thing. Refrigerant is contained within the evaporator and condenser coils and refrigerant lines of your air conditioning system and provides the chemical medium that the compressor and other mechanical components needs to remove heat from your home. Without refrigerant, you would have many hot and uncomfortable days in your home. Generally, your system will come with one of two kinds of refrigerant: R-22 and R-410A. While both serve to cool your home, they are not the same thing.
R-22 & R-410A
Two of the most common refrigerants that are used in residential home cooling systems are R-22 and R-410A. But what is the difference? Don’t they both do the same thing? While they both will cool your home, R-22 is not as environmentally friendly and is being gradually phased out. The reason for this phase out is due to the harmful effects of R-22 on the ozone layer in our atmosphere. R-410A refrigerant is friendlier for our environment because it does not contain chlorine. This phasing out will be completed within the next few years. So what does this mean for you?
Since R-22 is being gradually phased out, its availability is becoming far more limited and the price is going way up. While you are not required to get rid of your R-22 system, its production is being phased out by the government and will be harder to find to do repairs on existing systems. This means higher prices and more expensive repairs for you if you have an old system that still uses R-22.
In order to save money on your air conditioning system, some manufacturers produce “dry charge” systems. These systems are designed to use the R-22 refrigerant, but the unit is not shipped with the refrigerant already in the system. The refrigerant is added by a licensed HVAC professional during the installation. If you need a licensed HVAC professional, check out our network of professionals today. Keep in mind that as the supply of R-22 becomes more limited, the price will continue to increase.
So what makes R-410A better than R-22 or a dry charged system? We’re glad you asked! For starters, it is much more environmentally friendly for the ozone layer in our atmosphere. R-410A is also more energy efficient, which means lower electric bills for you. AC systems that use R-410A often have a longer warranty, run quieter, and this newer refrigerant is more readily available to you for any repairs (more cost savings). While a dry charged unit may provide more initial savings than an R-410A system, the phasing out of R-22 combined with the energy efficiency of the R-410A system will usually make the R-410A system the better choice.
Unsure about what type of system or refrigerant is right for your needs? Visit our Contractor Network and we will put you in touch a trusted professional in your area that can answer this and any other questions you may have about refrigerant.
If you have a system with R-22, don’t worry! Your system will still be able to operate. The only difference is now you have the knowledge that will allow you to save your hard earned money when your current system needs repairs or replacement. When that time comes, get in touch with a trusted professional from the HVAC.com Contractor Network and they will get you the system that is right for you!