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Should I Replace My AC If It Experiences a Refrigerant Leak?
by Brenda Vollman on Oct 10, 2018
A refrigerant leak is one of the most common issues of an air conditioning system. Freon or R22 is the predominant refrigerant used in almost all air conditioner units before 2010. If you have an AC unit that was installed before 2010, your system might be using Freon as the refrigerant. The main function of the refrigerant is to remove warm air from your home and relocate it outside. But due to wear and tear and many other reasons, Freon can begin to leak. Freon leaks can result in performance issues to the system as well as health issues to the inmates in the building. That is why you should seriously take note of a Freon leak and try to fix the problem as soon as possible. But most homeowners are unaware of what they should do in such a situation. This article provides information on whether you should replace the AC unit if it experiences a Freon leak.
Freon or R22 is considered an ODS or ozone-depleting substance due to its negative effects on the environment. Freon causes a depletion of the ozone layer of the planet. The ozone layer plays an important part in the shielding of life on earth from the harmful effects of the UV rays of the sun. Ultraviolet rays can cause various conditions including skin cancers. The ozone layer helps protect us from the damaging effects of UV rays. That is why it is important to safeguard the ozone layer at any cost. The world leaders convened in Montreal in 1987 to sign the Montreal Protocol that aims to phase out the use of ozone-depleting substances. The phasing out is done in several stages and the final stage is to be implemented in January 2020.
Once the phasing out is completed in 2020, you won't be able to purchase Freon on the market even at high prices. Hence, you won't be in a position to refill your HVAC system if there is a leak in the unit. That is why it is important that you take the necessary steps to replace R22 or Freon in your system with an eco-friendly alternative refrigerant such as R410A or TdX 20 - which are considered two of the best alternative refrigerants on the market today. These substances help improve the performance of your system, reduce its electricity usage, and are friendly towards the environment. You can make the shift from R22 to R410A or TdX 20 right now so that you won't face any issues in case your system experiences a Freon leak after January 2020.
If your system uses Freon as the refrigerant and experiences leak right now, you have two options to consider. One is to pay a higher price and refill the system with Freon and the other is to replace the unit with a unit that uses an alternative refrigerant. The second option is ideal if your system is an old worn out system. There is no point in paying an exorbitant price to replace an older system with Freon. In fact, a pound of Freon is sold at an exorbitant price on the market today. That is due to the limited production of the substance. Freon isn't freely produced after 2010. It is only produced to service the existing HVAC-R units out there. A pound of Freon is sold at $115 right now - which is quite expensive compared to TdX 20 or R410A that sells at $15 per pound. You can imagine how much you will have to pay to replace a leaking HVAC unit with Freon or R22.
Since Freon is quite expensive right now, the best thing for you is to replace the AC when it experiences a refrigerant leak. This is an ideal option in case you have an old system in your home or office. By replacing an older system with an energy efficient unit that runs on an eco-friendly alternative refrigerant, you will save money as well as do your part towards the environment. The latest alternative refrigerants such as TdX 20 and R410A are non-ozone depleting substances - which mean they are environmentally friendly compared to Freon. On the other hand, these substances will improve the performance of the unit while reducing the electricity consumption. More than 40% of the electricity of the world is used by the HVAC-R systems out there. On the other hand, electricity is one of the largest components that contribute to global warming. That is why you should replace R22 or Freon with an alternative refrigerant that is eco-friendly. You save the environment for the future generation that way.
If you have a relatively new HVAC-R system and it experiences a Freon leak, you have to weigh the pros and cons between replacing the entire unit and refilling Freon at a higher price. If the AC unit could be used for at least another 5-6 years, you may consider refilling the unit with Freon. On the other hand, if the system is worn out and about to break down, you should consider replacing the entire unit. You may also consider replacing the Freon with a refrigerant such as TdX 20 that works on almost all Freon units. That way you don't have to replace the entire unit - which helps save money in the process. TdX 20 is one of the best alternative refrigerants on the market today. It improves the performance of the HVAC-R system and reduces its electricity consumption. That way TdX 20 contributes to saving the ozone layer of the planet. It is a non-ozone-depleting substance compared to R22. That is why TdX 20 from Bluon Energy has become so popular with a majority of HVAC-R professionals out there.
Freon leaks are quite common in HVAC units. If your AC experiences such a leak, you shouldn't panic but call a professional HVAC-R contractor to fix the issue immediately. Freon is damaging to the environment as well as the health of your loved ones. The aforementioned provides information on whether you should replace the AC unit if it experiences a Freon leak.
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