Air Conditioning Refrigerants & Gases Guide
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Air conditioning refrigerants give your air conditioners the ability to cool your home or workplace, but many air conditioner owners don’t realise the importance of choosing the right refrigerant.
Over time, certain refrigerants become either illegal due to environmental regulations or obsolete with the introduction of newer and more efficient refrigerants. Learning about the different types of refrigerant will make your air conditioner highly efficient and give you more awareness when looking to buy more.
What is a refrigerant and what does it do?
An air conditioning refrigerant can be bought in a liquid or gaseous state and is classed as a working fluid as it readily absorbs heat from the surrounding environment. An air conditioner relies solely on the refrigerant to work properly, making it the most important component of the appliance.
Different types of air conditioning refrigerant
There are three main types of air conditioning refrigerants that have been used throughout the years, including:
- CFCs – This refrigerant was proven to have a detrimental effect on the environment, contributing greatly to the greenhouse gas effect. The production of the refrigerant was stopped in 1994.
- HCFCs – This kind of refrigerant is less damaging than CFCs but still isn’t an ideal choice for your air conditioner. HCFCs will be completely phased out by 2020 as part of the clean air act.
- HFCs – The most environmentally friendly refrigerant on the market, as it doesn’t contain chlorine, which is highly damaging to the environment. This fuel is more efficient and offers a higher air quality than other air conditioners.
What refrigerant is being phased out?
There are many different types of HCFCs which were very popular for use in air conditioners, which are now having to be phased out. The most popular of which was the HCFC R-22 refrigerant, which has been in production since the 1930s. R-22 was the standard refrigerant to be used in air conditioners until 1987 when it was announced it would be a part of the ‘phasing out initiative’, which pushed the industry towards using more environmentally friendly refrigerants. R-22 will be officially banned from being produced and imported on 1st January 2020. This means that after that date, it will be very hard to buy any new R-22 refrigerant.
What you need to know if you have an air conditioner that runs on R-22 refrigerant
When we reach the 1st January 2020, you don’t have to stop using your air conditioner. You can keep using an air conditioner that runs on R-22, but your air conditioner will need replacing when the R-22 runs out. There are a few things you can do to avoid this, such as:
- Switch to another refrigerant that can be used as a substitute in your current air conditioner.
- Buy yourself a new air conditioning system, as many air conditioners that rely on R-22 are due an upgrade.
- You could stock up on R-22 refrigerant whilst it’s still being sold however this is not recommended as it releases green house gases into the atmosphere.
Advantages of newer air conditioners
Although your air conditioner may still be somewhat working, we recommend taking a look at the newer air conditioners on the market, as they have a multitude of benefits that your current air conditioner might not have.
Improved air quality
Old air conditioners tend to spread dust and allergens around the home or workplace, creating a low-quality atmosphere. Newer air conditioners are fitted with cleaning aids, so all the cool air they expel is clean and fresh. This will be especially useful if you suffer from asthma attacks or hay fever symptoms.
Reduced energy use
Air conditioners designed and produced within the last few years have become more energy-efficient, therefore reducing your household bills and carbon footprint.
By having a fully comprehensive air conditioning system in your home or workplace, this means you’ll be able to keep your windows shut and locked, thus increasing the security of your premises. Furthermore, having a colder atmosphere in your bedroom will help you get better sleep, as many studies show.
How we can help
Here at Airway Air Conditioning , we pride ourselves on delivering high-quality air conditioners with a first-rate service. We supply a wide range of air conditioners, from portable units to ceiling-mounted units, so no matter your environment, we’ll have the perfect air conditioner for you. For more information on our products and services or air conditioning refrigerants, please get in touch with a member of our team today.