The reality is, most older units in homes use R-22. The upcoming R-22 phaseout forces NJ homeowners and business owners to make informed choices when servicing, repairing, or replacing their existing air-conditioning unit or when purchasing a new AC unit.
Currently, you can still get R-22 to fix a broken system, but the closer we get to January 1, the more expensive those repairs will become. Here’s what you can do now to prepare for the upcoming R-22 phaseout.
What is the R-22 Phaseout About?
R-22 is an HCFC refrigerant that has been used in air-conditioning equipment over the last several decades. To protect the Earth’s protective ozone layer, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is phasing out R-22, along with other chemicals.
According to the EPA, “the stratospheric ozone layer shields the Earth from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet radiation. Emissions of certain synthetic chemicals – including CFCs, halons, and HCFCs – destroy the ozone layer, and have created an “ozone hole” over the South Pole.”
United States Environmental Protection Agency Timeline on the R-22 Phase Out
In 2010, the EPA banned any new systems that used HCFC-22 (also known as R-22). And, as of January 1, 2020, R-22 will no longer be manufactured or imported. After 2020, the servicing of systems with R-22 will rely on recycled or stockpiled quantities.
How to Prepare for the R-22 Phaseout
Schedule an AC Tune-Up
The most important thing you can do is to maintain your unit properly. We recommend a maintenance check twice a year, but it’s a good idea to get your AC system checked out sooner than later. Make any necessary repairs now and if it needs R-22, get it now before the price skyrockets even more.
Replace Your Air Conditioning Unit Proactively
Here at Brown’s, we believe in being proactive. While the lengthy phaseout period has allowed New Jersey homeowners and businesses time to research options for replacing air-conditioning equipment that uses R-22, time is quickly running out.
Our experts can help you identify energy-efficient air conditioners that can save big on energy costs. Even if your current air conditioner is only 10 years old (and uses R-22), you may save significantly on your energy costs by replacing it with a newer, more efficient model.
Not to mention the fact that air conditioners using R-22 are proven to be more harmful to the environment and ozone layer, so replacing it now will save both money and the environment.
Things to consider when replacing your AC include energy efficiency, performance, reliability, cost, and the kind of refrigerant used.