R-22 Refrigerant Phaseout Draws Closer – A Warning From the EPA

Did you ever think you would see the day when thieves would target Freon? That’s how crazy this whole R-22 refrigerant story is getting. Crooks recently stole more than $20,000 worth of what some refer to as R-22 Freon from a supply company in Tennessee.
Dixie Electric, Plumbing & Air wants to make sure the craziness doesn’t come back to “bite you” financially or otherwise.
Freon is a group of products developed by DuPont in the late 1920’s. It fueled the 20th century explosion of refrigeration and air conditioners. But since the 1970’s, the warnings have been out there: it damages the environment. Starting in 2020, it will no longer be manufactured or imported in the U.S. Already the R-22 price is skyrocketing, and it’s expected to keep going up.
Is it wise to continue repairing and maintaining your old AC unit using R-22? That’s a tough question for homeowners. If your air conditioner currently needs to have Freon added or has a history of leaks, it’s going to get more and more expensive. You could suffer from sticker shock at how much it may cost.
Now is the time to talk with our professionals about whether it makes more sense to invest in R-22 replacement with a new AC system. Our experience is a refrigerant leak can often be a sign of more serious problems just ahead.
These are some factors indicating it’s time for a replacement:

  • Frequent & costly repairs
  • Energy bills rising (new units can save 30% or more)
  • House is too hot

The phase-out also led to a scary warning from the Environmental Protection Agency.  Some unscrupulous people are trying to market something called R-22A as a cheaper replacement.
R-22A is a propane-based product. It can lead to explosions and fires. In at least one case, a fire injured a technician who was working on a system. It is not approved for use in any home air conditioning system.
Dixie has not heard about it happening in our area, but if anyone tries to sell you or convince you to use R-22A in your home air conditioner, you should report them immediately. It is illegal and dangerous.
The issue is not going away. The clock is counting down. Trust Dixie Electric, Plumbing & Air to help you make an informed decision about the best way to deal with the R-22 phase-out. Our technicians are always here for your service, repair, and maintenance needs.