R-22 Refrigerant Prices Triple

Charging a residential heat pump system with refrigerant.

R-22 refrigerant prices have skyrocketed in the past two weeks.  We have known for some time that R-22 refrigerant was to be phased out and have actually been relieved that up until now, the price has remained stable.  Prices have tripled and we may see additional increases this year.

In 1987 the Montreal Protocol, an international treaty, was enacted. It specifies the  phase-out of ozone depleting refrigerants such at R-22.  Production quantities allowed under the treaty have been reduced by 25% since 1996.  The reduction has caused R-22 refrigerant prices to increase as a consequence of supply and demand.

New equipment uses 410-A, a more environmentally friendly refrigerant.  BlueAir has been installing 410A Systems for our customers for the last 13 years.  Still many homeowners have not yet upgraded their air conditioners and heat pumps.

The increased price won’t affect you unless your air conditioner leaks.  Because, air conditioners are closed loop systems and shouldn’t leak refrigerant unless there is a problem with the equipment.

If you do have a leak you should know that refrigerant leaks get worse over time.  An average residential system holds 8-10 pounds of refrigerant.  If a BlueAir technician discovers that your system is low on refrigerant he can perform a leak check.  Either your equipment is leaking or there is a leak in a refrigerant line.

If the leak is repairable you may want to weigh your options.  Consider the cost of the leak repair, the cost of refrigerant, the age of your system, and its efficiency.  It may be more cost-effective to replace your old system with a more efficient one that will cost less to run and maintain.

When the time comes we will be happy to discuss your options with you and help you find the best solution.

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Call us at 512-257-8423!

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