R-22 (Often referred as Freon) vs. R-410a (Often referred as Puron) Refrigerant
If you have not updated your old air conditioning system recently, you may not be aware that your older system is not compatible with the current standard refrigerant. This means that if your current system becomes damaged or leaking, the cost of repairs will be higher and in some cases may not even be possible.
As of 2010 the EPA mandated that the refrigerant R-22 is no longer allowed to be used in new systems. But, why?
The government mandated the shift away from the use of R-22 primarily due to environmental concerns. R-22 is a greenhouse gas known as a hydro-chloroflourocarbon (HCFC) that contributes to the depletion of the ozone layer. It also suffers by being less efficient at transferring heat than the current standard refrigerant, R-410a.
In contrast, R-410a is a hydro-flourocarbon (HFC) and does not contribute to the depletion of the ozone layer and as stated earlier, is more efficient than R-22. The most efficient R-22 unit has a SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficient Rating) of 14 whereas R-410a has high-efficiency units with a SEER of 21. This increase in efficiency translates to less electric used by homeowners, saving you money and reducing emissions by energy power plants.