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Freon Phase Out

Freon Phase Out

by Nelson Privette, Monday, January 23, 2017 6:30 PM

What Is Happening to Freon?

The U.S. government passage of the Clean Air Act Amendment of 1990 is more than 25 years behind us now, and its plan is still being carried out today. Among many other practices, the amendment enacted the phase out of hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs). These substances were contained within the refrigerant widely known as “Freon”. This type of coolant was widely used in HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning) systems for many years and is now almost completely phased out.

Phase Out

The law states that R-22 may no longer be used to recharge HVAC equipment starting on January 1, 2020. What’s more, the decline of R-22 toward that date means a higher cost of recharging units that use R-22. The cost is getting so high, in fact, that replacing an old system would easily be more cost effective than re-filling a system which had a minor leak.

The Future

January of 2010 marked a shift in manufacturing practices for HVAC units. Starting at this time, systems were no longer built to accept R-22 as a refrigerant. With the impending phase out, any system built prior would have to be replaced if it ever had any leaks. New, more effective refrigerants such as R-410A (recognized as Puron) are now being used, and modern systems have been altered to use these new types of coolant. Knowing this, it would be wise to prepare for a HVAC upgrade that could be lurking around the corner.

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