R-22 Phase Out

You may have heard about the R-22 phase out coming up in January 2020. We have had many customers ask us about this, concerned by information that other HVAC companies have provided them. They have been told that they must replace their old A/C system now or in the very near future. In most cases, this is absolutely untrue.

R-22 is being phased out worldwide because of its harmful effects on the ozone layer. As of January 2020, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has banned R-22 from being produced or imported in the United States.

What Does This Mean For Maintenance and Repairs?

The R-22 Phase Out and what it means to you

HVAC systems that use R-22 are now obsolete. If you have a system that uses R-22, any repair that requires adding R-22 refrigerant will force you to choose reclaimed or previously produced R-22 refrigerant. There are several alternatives on the market which can still be used in older R-22 systems.

At Nichols & Sons, we will do our best to repair your system with these alternatives before recommending a new system.

Of course, as time passes, these alternatives and reclaimed / previously produced R-22 are going to be in great demand, as supplies are already shrinking. This is going to drive up the price of these refrigerants, until finally routine repairs will be cost prohibitive.

Keeping Your Current System Vs. Upgrading

Obviously, it is not wise to install a system that uses R-22. But, what about customers who already own R-22 dependent systems?

Equipment we use to test and maintain HVAC units

If you own an R-22 system, you are free to use your system past January 2020 and get as much useful life as possible out of it. Once it needs a repair, Nichols & Sons will do our very best to utilize whatever compatible refrigerant we can in your system.

Some R-22 units can be converted to use a different refrigerant. However, many conversions may only buy the customers a few more years of useful life. The pricing for many system owners will not favor retrofitting.

Nichols & Sons will be happy to look at your HVAC system and make a determination what would be best for you, both now and in the long run. We can give you prices on what repairs will be if you keep your current system, and compare those to the price of upgrading to a brand new, high efficiency unit that will save you money over many years. Our goal is to make sure you are happy with whichever choice you make!