An air conditioner is nothing without refrigerant, and choosing the right kind of refrigerant for your system can ensure that it runs optimally throughout the year. Here’s what you need to know about buying refrigerant for your AC.
Types of Refrigerant
Freon (R-22) refrigerant was used in most air conditioning models until it was discovered to be destructive to the Ozone layer. The EPA recently ordered that it be phased out.
Luckily, there are a few other refrigerant options to choose from. They include:
- R-410A – Also known as Puron, R-410A has been approved for new air conditioning systems and doesn’t contribute to the destruction of the Ozone layer. It does, however, operate at a higher pressure than Freon, so your system will need to have components in place to handle this increase.
- R-407C – This refrigerant is also environmentally friendly, and it is closest to Freon as far as operating goes. It does, however, carry a lower overall efficiency due to its lower pressures. R-407C features a high-glide, meaning that there is a high difference between evaporating and condensing temperatures.
- R-134a – This refrigerant is widely used throughout the world and does not contribute to ozone depletion. It is also a no-glide refrigerant and was the first environmentally friendly refrigerant to be widely commercialized.
Choosing the Right Refrigerant
Now that you know the different types of refrigerant, which should you choose?
Well it all depends on your system. Overall, most technicians recommend using R-410A because of its high efficiency and performance while still remaining environmentally friendly. However, it is mostly designed for newer air conditioners and parts—an older model will not likely be able to handle the higher pressure.
If you have an older system and aren’t on the market for a new one, it may be better to use R-407C or another option that more closely resembles the operating of R-22 despite the high-glide and lower efficiency overall. It’s important to note that choosing refrigerant that does not match your system’s capabilities can damage parts or cause refrigerant to leak.
If you aren’t sure which refrigerant you should use for your air conditioner, the Houston area HVAC experts at Richmond’s Air can give you the advice you need. Contact us today to see how we can help.