The Rising Price of R-22 Refrigerant: Not The Only Reason You Should Replace Your Outdated Air Conditioning System
Around this time of year, Phoenix area residents and businesses start receiving flyers pertaining to Glendale, Scottsdale and Mesa air conditioning installation services. Many of these papers will mention the rising price and scarcity of R-22 refrigerant. Sometimes such sales literature can trigger memories – memories of last year’s amplified cooling bill or how hot it got in spite of the labors of your aged central AC system or of how much it costs for Freon replacement in that leaky upstairs unit.
For many homeowners, the memories will trigger action. Some will make a phone call. Others, with all good intentions of follow-up, will slip the flyer on top the stack in a bedroom vanity whatnot shelf. Perhaps you will keep it closer by adding it to the pile of future-reads that you keep near the computer desk. In either event thrifty homeowners recognize the truths relayed via the flyer. If your AC is over ten years old, there is good reason for making contact with a Phoenix AC installation professional.
Right now that ancient Phoenix sky may be overcast and that blazing afternoon sun isn’t baking your roof and steaming the inside of your Glendale home. Government restrictions concerning the production of Freon (R-22 refrigerant) haven’t yet forced you to take advantage of energy-efficient air conditioning technologies now offer by Amana, Carrier and other top brand designers of heating and cooling equipment. And perhaps thoughts of making it just one more season hinder your response to a change that may be much more valuable than you think.
Here are a few reasons why the rising price of Freon should not be your only decision-making measuring stick.
Prices Just Keep On Rising
U.S. government plans to phase out ozone depleting chemicals such as R-22 refrigerant are right on schedule. Over the last six months, Freon prices have climbed at an unprecedented speed. Production is on the decrease; panic buying is on the increase. The price of R-22 refrigerant is up by four times what it was just six months ago.
The push for settling the issue is near its end. By 2015, the government expects and demands a 90% reduction in the production of Freon. Meantime, the price of the replacement product, R410a, continues to drop. In the end result, Freon will cease to be available. Air conditioners installed before 2010 will experience Freon shortages, increased repair costs and the certainty of a future forced-replacement of the cooling system.
New Energy Standards and Increased Comfort at a Lower Cost
Ok. You don’t like Uncle Sam forcing your hand. No one does. But for the moment, why not lay the Freon issue aside. Here is an even better reason for calling in a Phoenix AC installation expert:
- Cost Effectiveness.
The best investments are often the most costly. Modern AC technology includes energy-efficient solutions designed to reduce your cooling cost, increase your personal at-home comfort level, and help protect the environment even when the systems are operating.
Here is an example from the extreme side of how new air conditioning technology can reduce energy expenses. According to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) a new DEVAP air conditioner process designed to combine desiccant-based dehumidification with indirect evaporative cooling can actually reduce the cost of industrial cooling by up to 81%. According to the project managers, even areas with dry climates such as Phoenix Arizona can benefit from the power of this new technology.
For now, DEVAP may not yet be an option for Phoenix homeowners. Yet the very technology that brings it into play is already working on your behalf. Using the free energy savings calculator available via the U.S. Small Business Administration, here is an example of what a Phoenix homeowner can save by installing an energy efficient central AC system. The following figures are based upon installing a new 2.5 ton 13.0 SEER energy efficient system.
In the summary, the bottom line relates to a percentage of the retail purchase price of the unit itself. The life-cycle energy savings amounts to nearly 25,000 KWh of electrical costs. The Net life-cycle savings pump out at $1,768. The value of the investment is obvious.
1) Avoid “dry charged” R-22 units. Although the original costs of such discount units may come in cheaper than an energy-star air conditioning system, they are not compliant with the regulations that demand forced upgrade to R-410a systems
2) Slow leaks can develop in R-410a air conditioners as well as in R-22 refrigerant units, however the time is near when Freon just won’t be available. In the meanwhile, that yearly R-22 recharge is costing more and more.
3) Add ceiling fans to your home. Moving air tends to cool better than stale air. A few well-placed ceiling fans provide a low-cost reduction to your energy bill.
American Cooling and Heating
As a Phoenix AC installation professional, American Cooling and Heating is licensed, bonded and insured for residential, commercial and industrial HVAC and refrigeration services in the following areas:
- And other Phoenix areas.
- And the Arizona BBB.
The quality of our heating and cooling services and workmanship is 100% guaranteed. Triple digit temperatures in the valley do not condemn you to eternal triple digit utility bills. Call today.