HVAC repair

Replacement Options for the R-22 Refrigerant in HVAC Units

One of the integral elements in your air conditioning system is the refrigerant. This circulates in your unit to absorb the heat from your indoor air and generate cooled air to boosts your indoor comfort. R-22, also known as HCFC-22, has been the only refrigerant used in air conditioning for ages.

This refrigerant is, however, slowly being phased out with the realization of its effect on the ozone layer and consequently, global warming. If you think the primary thing you need for the continued operation of your air conditioner is periodic AC repair and maintenance in Draper, you are mistaken.

If you had your unit installed before 2010, chances your unit is running on R-22 are high. By the year 2020, the production and importation of R-22 into the US will be illegal. As such, you need to replace your refrigerant if you are still using R-22 before this deadline reaches.

The following are the alternative refrigerants you have for the refrigerant of your air conditioner.

Table of Contents
  1. R-134A
  2. R-407C
  3. R-404A
  4. R-410A


This is officially known as tetrafluoroethane. It is a haloalkane refrigerant containing thermodynamic properties. Unlike other refrigerant options, R-134A is a single component, and you will not need multiple recovery machines like you would when using blended refrigerants.

R-134A is used in rotary screw, scroll, reciprocating and centrifugal compressors. It is non-flammable, non-corrosive and non-toxic.


HVAC units

This has thermodynamic features that closely mirror those of R-22 but has no effects on the ozone layer. To this send, R-407C is the leading alternative for R-22 in residential and commercial air conditioners more so ductless split and packaged air conditioning units.

R-407C has a lower capacity loss and is cheaper compared to R-22. This makes the operation of your air conditioning less expensive than it was when running on R-22.


This is often used in air conditioners that run on temperatures of -45–15 degrees Celsius. R-404A is generally used in commercial and industrial establishments because of its broad temperature range.

The makeup of this refrigerant is quite similar to that of R-22 without the effects on the ozone layer. The refrigerant is colorless, odorless, and non-flammable.


This is a blend of two hydrofluorocarbons; pentafluoroethane and difluoromethane. R-410A is considered one of the best replacements for R-22. This is because it has been proven to have a higher energy efficiency compared to other refrigerants.

Moreover, it has a higher refrigeration and pressure capacity compared with R-22 and will thus offer better performance for your air conditioner. When replacing R-22 with R-410A for your air conditioner, you will need to install a new pressure gauge. This is to accommodate the latter’s high-pressure capacity safely.

Few people see the need to rush to replace the refrigerant of their air conditioner if it is running on R-22. Well, you only have a few months left to do so, and as you inch closer to the deadline, the above replacements will become more expensive.

Replacing an air conditioner’s refrigerant sounds like a simple draining and pumping in operation. Retrofitting your unit with the above refrigerants, however, requires an expert air conditioning company. This is because there are different components that should be adjusted or replaced to accommodate the new refrigerant.

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