Effective January 1, 2010, the Environmental Protection Agency, under Title VI of the Clean Air Act, will no longer allow air conditioning equipment that uses the refrigerant R22 (commonly known by the brand name Freon®) to be manufactured. This new mandate is designed to protect the environment from ozone depleting hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) that can be released through leaks and improper disposal.
A new refrigerant, 410A, (commonly known by the brand name Puron®) is available and is not harmful to the ozone or environment if it leaks from an air conditioning system.
The information contained in this page will help you understand the impact this new mandate will have on the environment, and how you could be affected should your air conditioning system need repair or replacement.
How will Old Republic Home Protection cover the R-22 Phase-out?
In 1987, world leaders met in Montreal, Canada to discuss the effect of chemicals on our Ozone Layer. As a result, an international environmental agreement, referred to as "The Montreal Protocol,"
established requirements that began the worldwide phase out of ozone-depleting CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons). These requirements were later modified, leading to the phase out in 1996 of CFC production
in all developed nations. In addition, a 1992 amendment to the Montreal Protocol established a schedule for the phase out of HCFCs (hydro chlorofluorocarbons). HCFCs are substantially less damaging
to the ozone layer than CFCs, but still contain ozone-destroying chlorine. The Montreal Protocol, as amended, is carried out in the U.S. through Title VI of the Clean Air Act, which is implemented by
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
An HCFC known as R22 has been the refrigerant of choice for residential air conditioners for over 40 years. Unfortunately for the environment, releases of R22 that result from Freon leaks contribute to ozone depletion. In addition, the manufacturing of R22 results in a by-product that contributes significantly to global warming.
The replacement refrigerant is referred to as 410A (or Puron) and is a Polyolester (POE) based refrigerant, as opposed to the mineral based oil used in R22 systems. In addition, 410A contains no HCFC's and is not harmful to the environment or ozone layer if it leaks from the system.
Yes. The phase out of R22 production allows for the manufacturing of R22 refrigerant through the year 2020, strictly for the use of servicing existing equipment. After 2020, the servicing of R22 systems will rely on recycled refrigerants and it's expected that reclamation and recycling will ensure that existing supplies of R22 will last longer and be available to service a greater number of systems beyond 2020.
No. The mandate doesnot affect refrigerants in kitchen refrigerators.