R-22 Refrigerant Retrofit

In January, the EPA phased out all manufacturer’s import of R-22 refrigerant.  Below is some good information that you, as a consumer, should be aware of.

In today’s HVAC market there are many “R-22” replacements for your existing system. A retrofit R-22 replacement can save you an average of $45.00 a pound on refrigerant. There are some factors that you will need to look at before deciding on using a refrigerant retrofit.

Ask yourself a few basic questions:

  • Why am I looking at adding refrigerant? If it’s a leak, is it repairable?

If your answer is “Yes”, does the remaining charge need to be recovered?

If the repair can be made without recovering the refrigerant charge, then have your system trimmed with R-22.  If the refrigerant charge will be recovered, then look at a retrofit.  

Let’s do some simple math. The average 4-ton R-22 system can hold about 12 pounds of refrigerant. With the average cost of $100.00 per pound for R-22, that would cost around $1200.00. There are several R-22 replacement options out there.  These options cost around $35.00 a pound, so that would cost around $420.00. That is a $780.00 savings on refrigerant. (Note: this is the refrigerant cost only).

  • Who is the manufacturer of my system and what compressor do I have?

For instance, Bryant/Carrier’s only approved refrigerant is R-407C.  If an unapproved refrigerant is used, it will void any warranty remaining on your system. Ask your HVAC provider which refrigerant is approved for your system. 

  • Do I need to be “Proactive” now?

As long as your system doing its job, there is no reason to go out and retrofit your system now. However, you can start planning on a retrofit to save time when your system does need service.   

  • If you do decide to go ahead and retrofit your R-22 system, it can take up to six hours of run time to properly charge the refrigerant and your system to be running at 100% again.

Contact your trusted HVAC provider and express your concerns and questions so you will be able to make the correct choice for your HVAC system.

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