Using your home’s heating, ventilation and air conditioning system (HVAC) is simple. Adjust the thermostat and the temperature goes up or down. But if you have an older system that uses R-22, and it has developed a leak or doesn’t cool properly, you could have a more complicated choice between repairing or replacing it.
Fixing a leak might sound cheaper, but that’s just a temporary solution that leaves you with an older, potentially unreliable system that needs to be replaced sooner rather than later.
Here’s why. If your HVAC system was manufactured or installed before 2010 it probably uses R-22 refrigerant, a chemical that is getting more and more expensive and harder to find. That’s because R-22 depletes the ozone shield in the atmosphere that absorbs most of the sun’s harmful ultraviolet light.
HVAC systems made since 2010 use a refrigerant known as R-410A. If you have a leak, you’ll have to make a choice between making a repair using hard to find and expensive R-22 or going ahead and replacing your system.
Lee Company has almost 80 years of HVAC experience, and our professionals can help you make the choice that’s right for you.
Option 1: Repair your HVAC
Repairing an older HVAC system can be a risky choice. We guarantee the quality of our work with a one-year warranty, but if your system leaks again after that time, you will have spent money on a repair that didn’t work. Keep in mind that the supply of R-22 is constantly shrinking and getting more expensive. There’s no guarantee it will be available much longer.
If you choose to repair your system, we’ll bring it back to the original factory specifications and charge it with the 100% pure, virgin R-22 it is designed to use. Some companies offer a replacement known as MO-99, but it won’t keep your house as cool.
Some companies may even offer to retrofit your system to use a newer refrigerant like R-410A. Such modifications might not work and could end up costing you more than installing a new system.
Option 2: Replace your HVAC
If your system uses R-22, it was manufactured more than a decade ago and is probably nearing the end of its useful life.
Replacing an old air conditioning system is always better for the environment, and it’s financially smart, too. Your new system will be covered by a warranty. And it will be more efficient and cheaper to operate. The U.S. Department of Energy says if your system is 10 years old, you may save up to 40% of your cooling energy costs by replacing it with a newer, more efficient model.
Our HVAC experts are here to help
An HVAC system is one of the biggest investments we make in our homes. Call us and let us help you choose the HVAC system that’s perfect for you.
Dean Schnakenberg, HVAC Service Manager – leecompany.com