National Refrigerant Phase-out to Affect Home Air Conditioning Units

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Heating and air conditioning company, Aire Serv, explains what the refrigerant phase-out means for homeowners.

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Tune-ups on older units may require the use of new refrigerant and that is something homeowners should know when getting their air conditioners serviced.

At the beginning of 2015, the federal government began the phase out of R-22, a common refrigerant found in home air conditioning unit. Heating and air conditioning company, Aire Serv, explains what the refrigerant phase-out means for homeowners.

The refrigerant phase-out, which is set to be complete by 2020, slowly reduces the production and importation of R-22 refrigerant in an effort to reduce the effects of greenhouse gases on the environment.

In its normal state, the refrigerant is a gas that is good at transferring heat. Because of this, the R-22 refrigerant is ideal for cooling purposes. Before R-22, a refrigerant known as R-12 was used in refrigerators and was the first refrigerant to be phased out.

“Unlike the R-12 phase-out, the R-22 phase-out will have a greater impact on homeowners – since it has been the primary refrigerant used in central AC systems for decades,” said Doyle James, president of Aire Serv. “The reduction of R-22, along with the Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) regulation in the southern states, will ensure there is a positive impact on the reduction of greenhouse gases being emitted from the use of air conditioners.”

Along with the refrigerant phase-out, the southern states have been mandated to install air conditioners with at least a 14 SEER rating on all new installations. Energy Star units must have a SEER rating of 14.5 or better.

As the phase-out nears completion in 2020, homeowners can expect to pay more for refrigerant as supplies dwindle and demand increases. Alternative, less environmentally impactful refrigerant will be available.

“Very soon, homeowners are going to find the old refrigerant they used will not be around,” said James. “Tune-ups on older units may require the use of new refrigerant and that is something homeowners should know when getting their air conditioners serviced.”

For more information about the R-22 phase-out contact an Aire Serv location near you.

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Jason Lee
The Dwyer Group 1
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