The coolant in your air conditioning system is often called “Freon.” HCFC-22 refrigerants (also known as R-22), or what you may think of as Freon contain chlorine gas, which can deplete the earth’s ozone layer. The need to protect the earth’s ozone has resulted in new government regulations and the creation of R-410A refrigerant. Since R-410A is chlorine-free, it will not damage the ozone. Refrigerant HCFC-22 is no longer being used in new air conditioning equipment. And, while R-22 remains available to service existing units, it is becoming pretty expensive.
The New A/C Refrigerant
R-410A was invented by Honeywell (Allied Signal at the time) in 1991. The first air conditioning units to use R-410A were introduced a few years later. But it wasn’t until nearly 20 years after it was invented that this alternative refrigerant became important in the heating and cooling industry. That is because government regulations made R-410A the new refrigerant of choice for A/C units in the United States. In fact, the new refrigerant that has replaced R-22 in every new air conditioner and heat pump manufactured since 2010.
Air-conditioning systems use an oil that circulates through the inside of the system to keep all of the parts well lubricated, just like the engine of your car. HCFC-22 air conditioners use an oil known as “mineral oil” that has been used for decades. R-410A air conditioners use newer synthetic lubricants and provide superior lubrication, reduced compressor wear, and extend equipment life. R-410A systems run colder, remove more humidity, and provide a more comfortable home than HCFC-22 systems. Due to the differences in the refrigerants, you cannot use R-410A in a system that was designed for R-22.
For more information on Freon Replacement by R-410A and how it impacts you, please visit: