On the 1st of January 2015, it became illegal to use R22 refrigerant to repair or maintain air conditioning equipment.
That might sound significant but it puts a lot of ageing systems onto their last lifeline. From now on, if they run into any problems, it’s unlikely they can be repaired.
As we are now past the 1st quarter we thought it would be useful to remind customers of the changes to the R22 regulation and how this impacts you if you have R22 equipment.
Why is R22 Equipment Still in Use?
Installers and manufacturers have been working hard to inform end-users about the R22 Phase Out but there are still thousands of affected systems in operation across the country.
The legislation gave businesses four years to upgrade their equipment, which proved to be plenty of time in most cases.
What Does the Deadline Mean?
It is perfectly legal to operate R22 equipment indefinitely, as long as it remains leak-free and reliable.
However, if any R22 refrigerant leaks out or needs to be removed for servicing, it will be illegal to recharge it afterwards. This rules out most maintenance and repair work, so if you run into any problems, it will probably mean the end of your system.
What action should you take?
Even without the deadline, R22 equipment is now at least 12 years old and reaching the end of its expected lifetime.
New systems are up to 50% more efficient than R22 equipment, therefore the money saved in running costs alone could pay the cost of a new system in years to come.
Partial replacement solutions are available, which enable you to retain your existing pipework and infrastructure, while saving time and money on the installation.
Using a “drop in” refrigerant is also an option, although this can sometimes prove unreliable, it is unsupported by manufacturers and requires extensive system modification and re-commissioning.
Despite the capital outlay, getting a new system is the best and most cost-effective solution in the longer term.
For more information about the R22 Phase Out or to book a free site survey, call us on 0141 773 3355.