An Update on Freon Availability for Your AC System

There was a time when you didn’t think twice about authorizing a refrigerant refill for your AC system. You just got it done. That’s when R-22 refrigerant (more commonly known as Freon) was $5 – $10 a pound.

That time is now behind us.

Decades ago, it was discovered that the chemicals used to make R-22 refrigerant were and continue to be ozone-depleting. As a result, in 1987, the world’s leading industrial nations implemented the Montreal Protocol. It set forth a timeline for the gradual phase-out while commissioning the development of an eco-friendly alternative. The product is on hand and is known as R-410A. It’s already commonly known as Puron.

Here’s how events have unfolded.

  • Freon has not been used in new AC system manufacturing since 2009.
  • Freon remained available for system refills through 2019.
  • Effective January 1, 2020, Freon can no longer be manufactured or sold in the US except in recycled quantities.
    How does this affect you? In a couple of key ways:

  • While Freon was still available in abundance, the cost for a refill, as mentioned above, was $5 – $10 per pound.
  • Today, recycled quantities are becoming increasingly difficult to obtain. And when you can, you’re likely to pay $100 or more per pound.
  • Given that your AC system is likely to require an average of 10 pounds of Freon, a refill can easily cost you $1,000 plus labor.
  • If your AC system is powered by Freon, it’s more than 10 years old. That’s when repairs become more frequent. This begs the question: are you willing to pay a four-figure sum for a Freon refill – roughly 10 times the original cost?

Here’s where the rubber meets the road. Before you know it, your AC system will need to be replaced. Maybe the best move is to replace it now and not risk a Freon refill. Then, you’ll have a brand new, eco-friendly system that will cost you significantly less to run while providing far greater cooling and convenience than your current system.

Contact Bob Boldt HVAC today to further explore your options and to receive a free estimate on a replacement system powered by R-410A refrigerant.

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