The Montreal Act of 1992 was put in place to stop desecration of our ozone layer and release of Chlorine into the atmosphere. Interesting fact here is one Chlorine atom will kill 100,000 ozone atoms. So since 1992, the US and other countries have been moving toward obsolescence of the chlorine filled Air Conditioners and Refrigeration equipment.
As part of the Act, production ended in 2010 for new air conditioning units “charged” with R-22 and production of the refrigerant itself was reduced by 75 percent. By 2015, there will be a 90 percent reduction in the production of R-22. By 2020, it will no longer be produced at all. Because production is limited, costs to charge existing units that are leaking R-22 refrigerant have gone up and are only expected to rise.
As of January 1, 2015, no more R-22 Equipment can be sold in the Southern region of the united states. All machines have to be R-410a refrigerant ready and qualify to be at least 14 SEER. The best R-22 does is 13 SEER. Note: we were allowed to dispense with the inventories of R-22 machines at our distributors.
So how does this affect you?
1. If you have an R-22 machine and the compressor goes out, you can replace the compressor, however, the cost to refill with R-22 is staggering. We used to install a dry charged machine from different suppliers, they are no longer sold here in the South.
2. If you have a leaking or bad evaporator coil in your house, The whole indoor machine has to be replaced. This is also the same for a gas furnace with an A/C coil. Hardly any R-22 air handlers and blower coils have a replacement coil. And if you do replace the R-22 coil, keep in mind the bill is still going to be stiff as we refill it with R-22. R-22 Costs the contractor 6-8 times more than 410a.
3. The second option is to install a legal 14 SEER system. Most have a 10 year warranty on them. Rental homes and commercial properties usually only qualify for 5 Year warranty. You are still ahead in the long run, as long as you maintain your A/C system.
As long as we are on maintenance. You change oil in your car and have the lights and brakes checked, at least I hope you do. You are usually ahead having your units looked at once or twice a year.
Another rule we use is the "5,000 rule” We look at the age of the equipment and multiply that by the repair cost. If you get a number more than $5,000, then you should make arrangements to make a replacement. For example, a 12-year-old unit with a $300 repair equals $3,600. It’s OK to repair.
If you have any questions, please call and we will gladly help you make a decision.
Charlie Howe - 214-437-6603