Among residential AC refrigerants, R22 or Freon was the norm for many years. However, due to the regulated phase-out of Freon, R401A is the new industry standard. R22 is an ozone-depleting hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC) and R401A is a non-ozone-depleting hydrofluorocarbon (HFC). Due to the extraordinary damages that they cause to the natural environment, many nations intend to eliminate the use of all HCFCs in both the public and private sectors by the year 2030. If you’re facing the prospect of having to upgrade the air conditioner in your Oregon City, OR home due to the increasing scarcity of Freon, you may want to know exactly how these two refrigerants differ.
R401A Operates at Significantly Higher Pressure Levels
Branded as Puron, R401A operates at significantly higher pressure levels than R22. This means that it cannot be safely used in your old, Freon-reliant air conditioner without major and expensive system modifications being made first. Putting Puron in an R22 conditioner would instantly result in the rupture of many of its parts.
Puron May be Better for Your Air Conditioner
Despite operating at higher pressure levels, R401A is believed to be better for air conditioners. It is more effective at absorbing and releasing heat which reduces stress on AC compressors. While R22 ACs lubricate AC compressors with mineral oil, R401A compressors have the benefit of a much more effective synthetic lubricant. This higher-performing synthetic helps extend the lifespans of AC compressors as well.
Freon Is Soon to Be Too Costly to Remain a Practical Choice
Soon, for consumers, the biggest difference between Freon and Puron will be cost. The structured phase-out of R22 saw the production of new Freon-using air conditioners outlawed in 2010, and the importation and domestic production of R22 outlawed in 2022. With Puron both legal and readily available, it is fast-becoming the most cost-effective choice in residential AC refrigerants.
At Anderson Heating & Cooling, we pride ourselves in providing residents of Oregon City, Oregon, and the surrounding area with the latest innovations in HVAC equipment and technology. We value energy-efficiency, indoor air quality, and environmentally friendly heating and cooling options just as much as our clients. We also offer ductless heating and cooling systems, water heaters, and a comprehensive range of HVAC services. To find out more about upgrading your R22 air conditioner, give us a call.