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WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN R-22 AND R-410A REFRIGERANTS?

There has much debate within the air conditioning and heating industry about the difference between two air conditioning refrigerants: R-22 and R-410A.  It is especially relevant with the R22 refrigerant phase out. If you are considering a new air conditioning unit purchase then it is important that you understand the difference so you can make the best decision for your system. We’ve outlined below the main differences below and why they will matter to you.

What is R22 refrigerant?

R-22 is a hydro-chlorofluorocarbon (HCFC) which contributes to ozone depletion. In 2003, worldwide legislation was brought in to have a slow R22 phase out. Legislation has therefore been in place to ultimately replace R22 refrigerants with more friendly options. From December 2014, it is now illegal to refill and service air conditioning machines that run on R22.

 

What is R-410A refrigerant?

R-410A refrigerant was brought in as an ozone-friendly alternative to the R22. It has been approved for use in new residential air conditioners. Like R22, it is a hydro-fluorocarbon (HFC). However ii does not contribute to ozone depletion. R410A is going to become the new standard for residential air conditioning systems in 2015.

 

R-410A Refrigerants

How different are R22 and R410A?

As stated above, the newest designs of air conditioning models are designed to be used with R-410A.  It is more efficient and better for the environment too. R-410A can absorb and release more heat than R-22. This means that your air conditioning compressor can run at a cooler temperature. Therefore an air conditioning unit will have a longer life span. There is less risk of the air conditioning compressor burning out due to overheating. The R-410A refrigerant also functions at a higher pressure than R-22. Therefore new air conditioning unit compressors are made to last. Each unit can incur greater stresses which reduces the chance of cracking and breaking.

If you were to put R-410A refrigerant into a system designed for R-22, it would be too much and the unit would break. Therefore many are getting their old R22 modified so that it can take the R410A refrigerant. This can be costly however, and it may be more cost-effective to juts invest in the new units.

The other major change in air conditioners recently is the oil that is used to keep the compressor lubricated during operation. In R-22 air conditioners a mineral oil was used. With the new, modern units, a synthetic oil is used. The synthetic oil works better with the R-410A than mineral oil did with R-22. Meaning that the R-410A system works more efficiently. There is also a reduction of wear and tear on the compressor system. Meaning you can save money over the years with a reduction of air conditioning servicing.

Are you thinking of updating your R22 air conditioning units to more modern R410A based ones? Breeze Installations can help you install a brand new set up. Save money and become more energy efficient today.