The ban on R22 doesn’t come as too big of a surprise, especially given the recently increased interest in climate change and global warming. R22 has long been seen as an environmental hazard. It’s an active contributor to the depletion of the ozone layer. It was some years ago when the United States government announced its plans to put an end to the refrigerant by 2020.
While there were still some ways to acquire the R22 and use it for your refrigerators previously, none of that is possible—or legal—now.
Can I Still Find R22, Despite the Ban?
That depends on whether or not the company you rely on (a) has the refrigerant and (b) bought it before the ban went into effect. You can procure R22 from such companies and use the refrigerant for older cooling systems. However, you must bear in mind that R22 will be available in limited supply and if there’s a given with limited supply, it’s this: the prices go up. So, if you do continue to try and procure some of that limited R22, you’ll have to pay higher prices.
Alternatively, if you’re contracting out to a technician who uses R22, they’ll have to be EPA-authorized for the use. As a rule, you should check with your technician if it’s wise to continue using Freon.
How Do I Convert an Old Unit?
Many people are looking toward the more energy-efficient option: replacing their older units with newer, modernized ones. Older units will require (a now-expensive) Freon and will also require constant repairs. In light of these, replacing older systems altogether does seem like a great idea.
And it isn’t just great in terms of long-term cost-effectiveness—newer systems are also energy-efficient, so you’ll be doing the environment and your future generations a favor.
And what does it cost to convert an old unit? $500 if you’re doing it halfheartedly, but if you’re doing it the way it should be done—if you’re replacing all the metering devices and all the seals as you should, it will cost you around $1000. And don’t believe the folks who tell you they can do it for less—they’re probably not following manufacturer recommendations. Bear in mind that the prices of parts for R22 are rising and combined with the cost of repairs, a new unit is an investment that will save you money in the long run.
About Comfort Shield
We are a 30-year-old business providing professional HVAC services for reasonable rates. You can get in touch with us online to schedule an inspection or for other services. You can also give us a call at (919) 588-8015.
As a family-owned local business in North Carolina that’s EPA Certified, we understand the importance of being able to respond promptly to service requests. We extend our services in Raleigh, Kenly, and beyond.