The Process of Switching to R-410A Refrigerant

As a homeowner, you likely have your HVAC system inspected and tuned up at least once a year. If your system is older, you may need to consider one important change. An HVAC mechanic can perform an R-22 AC switch to a R-410A system. This switch is vital in order for your home to be in compliance with legal environmental standards.

Why Make the Switch?
The properties of R-22 refrigerant have been shown to deplete ozone, so it is not an environmentally sound choice. In fact, the manufacture of R-22 has been phased out, and, as of January 2020, it is illegal. Some system parts may be available, but they are in short supply and may become very expensive. When you are switching from R-22 to R-410A, your technician has to take into account that the two refrigerants are not chemically compatible and transfer heat differently. To use them in the same system would be like putting regular unleaded fuel in a diesel engine. Therefore, at minimum, all R-22 refrigerant must be removed from the system before R-210A can be used. It is also likely that your R-22 system cannot withstand the extra pressure R-410A exudes. A total system overhaul is often necessary to accommodate this change.

What Must Be Replaced?
Making the R-22 AC switch to a system more conducive to R-410A requires replacing some of the major parts that make your HVAC unit run. The evaporator, compressor and condenser must all be replaced to convert to a R-410A system. In some cases, the same pipes can be used, but all leaks must be found and they must be completely dried before the technician introduces R-210A refrigerant. Water breaks down the refrigerant’s molecules, so the system must be vacuum sealed and all traces of moisture must be removed.

If you have not already done so, it’s time for an R-22 AC switch to R-410A in your HVAC system. A certified technician can inspect your system and let you know what all needs to be done to make the switch effectively.

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