What is R22 Refrigerant Used For? – Climate Change Facts

What is R22 refrigerant used for? In case you haven’t heard of it, it’s basically the refrigerant your AC is likely using right now, if it was installed around 2010. However, we’ve got some news for you: there’s an R22 refrigerant phase out coming up, which means that R22 refrigerant production will halt on 2020. This is mostly because of the new Freon law change for 2020, which seeks to halt global warming products and replace them with eco-friendlier R22 alternative refrigerants. You’ll have to replace most of your appliances and/or refrigerants by then, but in case you don’t know how much R22 you own, this article will help you find out.

What is R22 Refrigerant Used For?

There are many health benefits to air conditioning, but you should be cautioned about R22. This article hopes to illustrate on what is R22 refrigerant used for so you can locate the appliances that use them and get prepared for the massive R22 refrigerant phase out coming in 2020. We’ll also show you some R22 refrigerant alternatives you can start using today, in preparation for the R22 discontinuation.

What is R22 Refrigerant Used For
What is R22 Refrigerant Used For?

R22 refrigerant absorbs and removes heat from specific spaces, so you can find it among central AC systems, heat pumps, mini-splits, and other refrigeration systems. If your AC or any other of these appliances were installed before 2010, they’re likely still running on R22.

Why the R22 refrigerant phase out?

Although an effective heat absorbent, R22 is a potent greenhouse gas that contributes to global warming and ozone depletion. Since the ozone layer might increase harmful UV radiation if it keeps getting depleted, R22, along with other ozone damaging chemicals, will be phased out in accordance with the U.S. Clean Air Act and the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer.

It’s been decided that R22 will be completely phased out by January 1, 2020. It won’t be allowed in the U.S. after this date, and technicians will only be able to use recycled, reclaimed, or already produced R22 to service equipment.

What are some good R22 refrigerant alternatives?

R410A has become the best alternative to R22, and most of the recent manufactured AC and refrigeration systems are currently using it. Other options include R134A, R407C and R407A.

These refrigerants absorb heat as good as R22, albeit without the ozone depleting characteristics. As a matter of fact, although there’s no need to replace your R22 systems (yet), it’s better if you start saving for a new R410A system. Newer systems have R410A already installed on them, and can even increase the resale value of your home.

Summary

Can you still use R22 refrigerant?

Although production of R22 became forbidden around 2010, you can still use your current R22 equipment, and recycled R22 refrigerant will still be available to service existing air conditioners after 2020. However, R22 related services will become scarce, and consequently, pricey.

What is R22 Refrigerant Used For
What is R22 Refrigerant Used For?

Can you buy R22 after 2020?

No. It will become illegal in the United States once 2020 rolls in.

Do I have to replace my R22 air conditioner?

After January 2020, your R22 systems will no longer be repaired if your service company can’t get R22. That’s why, and as we said above, it’s better to start saving money for a new AC system, before your R22 stops working. Saving money on your AC bill is important. 

So, to summarize, what is R22 refrigerant used for? It’s one of the main components of every refrigeration system worldwide, particularly air conditioners. Although an excellent cooling substance, it’s not eco-friendly at all, so it was to be expected that the Freon law change in 2020 would demand for a R22 refrigerant phase out in 2020. Don’t get caught by surprise and start looking for R22 alternative refrigerants, before the prohibition leaves you with an outdated and harmful AC system. Start saving some money and get R410A compatible systems as soon as you can.

How Does Ozone Depletion Impact Human Health?

How does ozone depletion impact human health? This is a question that continues to be posed with increasing frequency as the climate change debate rages on. It is a known fact that continuous overexposure to ultraviolet radiation can lead to a number of health issues including skin cancer.

How Does Ozone Depletion Impact Human Health

How Does Ozone Depletion Impact Human Health?

Basically, ozone depletion refers to the gradual thinning of the ozone layer, which is the natural filter that absorbs most of the burning UV rays coming from the sun. With the gradual depletion of this filter, comes an increase in the intensity of UV rays hitting the earth’s surface.

UV rays have the capacity to disrupt important biological processes and also cause damage to various materials. Of course, exposure to UV is nothing new to humans. However, in recent decades, environmental degradation has led to increased ozone depletion, which in turn has compounded the problems associated with UV exposure as mentioned by numerous organizations such as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and more.

1. Weakening of the Immune System

Studies have shown that UV radiation has the capacity to suppress the proper functioning of the immune system in humans as well as the natural defenses of the skin when it enters the body. No matter what your skin color is, you are vulnerable to the effects of UV overexposure, which include poor response to immunizations and negative reactions to various medications.

2. Skin Cancer

Although the risk of skin cancer is higher for fair-skinned and fair-haired people, it is important to note that exposure to UV radiation increases the risk for virtually all skin types. There are three major types of skin cancer; malignant melanoma, squamous cell carcinoma and basal cell carcinoma. In most cases, these cancers can be easily removed through surgery. Although melanoma is quite serious, it is also the least common type of skin cancer.

3. Eye Problems

UV radiation can cause damage to various parts of your eyes, including the cornea, the lens and the conjunctiva which is the membrane that covers the eye. In those parts of the world where UV exposure levels are very high, “slow blindness” is not uncommon. If unchecked, slow blindness can lead to irreversible damage to the eye over time.

How Do I Avoid UV Overexposure?

Since it is a foregone conclusion that ozone depletion impacts human health, it is important that you take the necessary steps to limit the impact of UV exposure.

How Does Ozone Depletion Impact Human Health

Here are some steps you can take:

1. Avoid Overexposure to the Sun

Staying outside for extended periods in the hot sun exposes you to very strong UV rays. If you are going to avoid these health risks, this is something you should try to avoid.

2. Apply Sunscreen Protection on Hot Sunny Days

Although sunscreen will not give you 100% UV protection, it does make a big difference in terms of how much your skin is exposed to UV rays.

3. Wear Quality Sunglasses

Sunglasses that have UV coating can protect your eyes from the effects of UV exposure. If you can get photochromic lenses, that would also be a good thing.

In Summary

So, how does ozone depletion impact human health? The impact of ozone depletion on human health cannot be overstated. With the number of health problems that can be linked to continuous UV exposure, it is important that the necessary preventive measures are taken. Being well informed on all matters to do with ozone depletion definitely helps in this regard.