R-22 Shortages Could Lead To Much Higher Prices In Florida: Must-Have Tips Every Homeowner Should Know
The appliance that Floridians rely on to get through the summer is an air conditioner — 85 percent of which use R-22 Freon. Prices are rising because this refrigerant is being phased out and R-22 shortages are expected. By 2020, its production will cease completely.
Refrigerants in cooling equipment do not get used up. The need to add more is always the result of a leak in the system. The best thing that owners of systems that use R-22 can do is have routine maintenance performed. Planned maintenance keeps systems clean and running efficiently also, potential R-22 leaks can be detected. When the systems do need more refrigerant, the R-22 shortages are likely to cause owners to consider upgrading their equipment to newer systems that use R410-A, which is far less expensive and much more environmentally friendly.
R-22 is globally recognized as a principle cause of ozone depletion and global warming. Additionally, it’s a hazardous chemical to breathe and it requires a special license to handle. Anyone who is removing an older HVAC system that uses it has to have a licensed technician remove the R-22 first.
Energy-efficiency improvements in air conditioners that use R-410A lower electric bills, and topping off an air conditioner that uses the newer alternative costs far less than staying with R-22. As air conditioners age, there’s a point at which maintaining and repairing stops making economic sense. And with the phase-out of R-22, the day is quickly approaching for Florida homeowners to start planning for a system replacement.
Starting now and heading into the future, R-22 shortages are going to become a major pocketbook issue. If you would like to learn more about preparing for the R-22 shortages, contact Symbiont Service Corp. We serve Florida’s Suncoast and are a NATE-certified contractor.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about R-22 shortages and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
|Energy Savings image via Shutterstock|