Beginning in 2010 the US Government has put legislation in place that disallows the sale of many refrigerant products that are used by older air conditioning systems. Although there is nothing in the legal jargon that requires consumers to upgrade their old equipment, many heating and cooling companies are suggesting that these old devices be replaced by newer ones because refrigerant won’t be available for replacement. Irwin Arieff from the New York Times explains the need for the legislation:
For years, the refrigerant of choice has been R-22, also known as HCFC-22 (short for hydrochlorofluorocarbon) or Freon 22, a brand name.
But R-22, when released into the atmosphere, eats away at the ozone layer, which shields the earth from hazardous ultraviolet radiation. In 1990, the federal Clean Air Act was amended to prohibit putting newly made R-22 into equipment made after Dec. 31, 2009.
The main replacement for R-22 in residential cooling is a hydrofluorocarbon called HFC-410A. Sold under names like Puron, Genetron AZ-20 and Suva, it was recognized by the E.P.A. as an R-22 substitute in 1996.
However, he also states that:
The government wants consumers to know that they are not obliged to buy any new equipment and has taken steps to try to ensure that there will be enough R-22, either newly made or recycled, to maintain existing equipment throughout its lifetime, Mr. Banks said. “People can continue to use their existing units, and continue to service them,” he said.
If you are having trouble with your Knoxville A/C unit, give us a call!