Many homeowners may be misinformed or confused about how much longer R-22 will be available to service their air conditioners and heat pumps. Fortunately, Minnick’s is here to help clear the air (pun intended).

THE TIMELINE

By the year 2020, no new or imported R-22 will be allowed in the United States. This year, the amount of new or imported R-22 dropped from 51 million pounds to 22 million. In 2016, that number drops to 18 million. In 2017, 13 million. By 2018, just 9 million.  And in 2019, just 4 million pounds of new or imported R-22 will be allowed in the U.S. The following year: nothing. That is theTimeline.

After 2020, the servicing of R-22-based systems will rely solely on recycled or reclaimed refrigerants.

THE WHY

R-22 has been the refrigerant of choice for residential heat pumps and air conditioners for more than four decades. Unfortunately, the use and production of R-22 contributes to ozone depletion and global warming.

THE SCIENCE

Scientists and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) have blamed R-22 in part for the depletion of the ozone layer. The production of R-22, meanwhile, produces HFC-23, which contributes to global warming. This is why, in 1987, an international meeting helped form the Montreal Protocol for reducing ozone-depleting substances (ODSs).

  1. Step 1:Eliminate CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons) and replace them with HCFCs. Now, HCFCs are less damaging to the ozone layer than CFCs, but still, contain ozone-destroying chlorine.
  2. Step 2:Replace HCFCs (hydrochlorofluorocarbons) with HFCs, which are more ozone-friendly. R-22 is an HCFC.

The Montreal Protocol is carried out in the U.S. through Title VI of the Clean Air Act, which is implemented by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

RETROFITTING AND REPLACING EXISTING EQUIPMENT

While there is no EPA requirement to retrofit or replace units using R-22, the substance will become harder and harder to find, as well as more and more expensive. For these reasons, it doesn’t hurt to consider retrofitting or replacing such equipment. And Minnick’s can help.  Our company has always employed only the most skilled and well-trained heating professionals, dedicated to giving you the best HVAC service possible, quickly, and at an affordable cost.

If you are interested in learning more about the R-22 Phaseout, please Contact Minnick’s today at (301) 605-9112. Whether you need to schedule an appointment for repair, installation, or a comprehensive home performance audit, Minnick’s can handle the job. You can also follow us on TwitterLinkedIn,YouTube, and Pinterest for more HVAC tips and tricks.