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My AC Uses R-22 Freon: What Can I Do?

By now, you’ve probably heard that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is phasing out the use of freon (aka R-22 or HCFC-22) in air conditioning units built prior to 2010.
If you have an older unit, there’s no need to replace it with a new one immediately.

Here are options to keep your AC up and running:

Do nothing.
If your unit is running properly and doesn’t need replacement, there are multiple alternative coolants approved by the EPA that are available. Your system likely doesn’t need any changes if you are already using an approved alternative.

If your system is not leaking and sealed, there’s no need to do anything except to maintain your AC unit properly. A properly installed and regularly maintained unit is unlikely to develop any leaks.

You do have the option of retrofitting it to be able to run an approved coolant per EPA regulations if your system is leaking, broken, or damaged, Having any leaks repaired will keep your system running at its optimal performance while reducing energy use and harmful emissions. It will also save you money down the road. Keep in mind the new condensing unit must meet the Department of Energy’s (DOE) regional efficiency standards for central air conditioners. To learn more about these standards, visit the DOE website.

However, doing this could void your warranty, so check with the system manufacturer to see if this is a viable option.

If your system is leaking bad enough, broken beyond repair, or is more than ten years old, it might be time to bite the bullet and replace your system. A new system costs approximately $6,000-$10,000.

If you’re curious if your system can be retrofitted or needs to be replaced with a cost-efficient, eco-friendly air conditioning system, look no further than Pioneer Heating & Air Conditioning. Give us a call today at 865-922-2817 to set up an appointment, or visit our website to schedule maintenance.


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