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Many homes in the St Louis area will notice a significant decrease in their AC cooling capabilities this Spring and Summer. It is very common. AC units over time can leak refrigerant which often leads to the need to have your AC recharged by adding refrigerant to the condenser. However, some homeowners could see a major increase in home ac recharge cost.

Benefits Of An Air Conditioning Recharge

Before we explain why it is important to note that there are many benefits of having your air conditioning recharged. Refrigerant is a key component in the functionality of your AC unit. Located within the coils of your condenser, it absorbs the indoor heat as it transitions from a low-pressure gas to a high-pressure liquid. Your AC fan helps cool these liquids where it is then redistributed back into the home as a low-pressure gas as cold air. AC refrigerant serves as the circulatory system of your central air system. Maintaining proper refrigerant levels provides a variety of benefits to the performance of your home air conditioning.

A Home AC Recharge Is Typically An Affordable Way To Increase The Performance Of Your AC System Heading Into Summer

When an AC unit is currently running with proper refrigerant levels, it is cooling the home at comfortable temperatures without overworking. This increases the performance of your AC system without overworking the equipment. Proper air conditioning refrigerant levels help prevent higher energy bills while increasing comfort within your home.

A Central Air Recharge Can Decrease The Chance Of AC Failure

Air conditioner refrigerant is vital to the functionality of an AC condenser. An AC unit depends on a refrigerant to keep the coils at a certain temperature. When an AC unit does not have proper refrigerant levels, the AC coils often are not warm enough. Over time, the AC coils start to get too cold and moisture starts accumulating around them. This can cause ice to start building up on your AC coils and can lead to your AC unit freezing up. If you notice that the coils on your outside unit are frozen, it is often a sign that you need an AC recharge.


So Why is The Cost of an Air Conditioning Recharge Increasing?

Not all homeowners will experience an increase in the cost of an air conditioning recharge this season.  The major factor in determining this is what type of refrigerant your air conditioner operates on.  There are currently 3 types of air conditioning coolant that home units run on.

  1. Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs)– Also referred to as “r12”, this type of coolant is very uncommon today as production on this coolant was stopped in 1994 due to attributing to greenhouse gases.  Almost all air conditioners that use r12 refrigerant are long extinct.
  2. Hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs)– Also referred to as “r22” refrigerant, are a bit less harmful to the environment.  However, the EPA has steadily been phasing out this type of refrigerant over the last ten years as part of the Clean Air Act of 1990.
  3. Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs)– Popular HFCs include r410a and r134 refrigerants.  HFC’s are known to be much safer for the environment as they do not possess chlorine.  Air conditioners that run off of, HFCs such as r410a, are often more energy-efficient and provide better air comfort inside your home.

The Price Hike Only Will Apply To Homes That Currently Have an r22 AC Unit

If you are in the market this season for an AC recharge and your air conditioning unit runs off of r410a refrigerant, need not worry. Your home AC recharge cost will be minimal. Only air conditioners that run off of r22 refrigerant will be affected by higher prices.

Costs of r22 AC Refrigerant Is Increasing Due to the r22 Phase Out

The increase in the cost of an AC recharge for r22 air conditioners is due to a lack of supply.  2020 was the first year of the Clean Air Act of 2010 when companies had to completely halt the production of r22 refrigerants.  Basically, what is still out there is all there is, and they are not making any more of it.  Many air conditioning repair contractors still have an inventory of r22, but they know it will be gone within a year or two.  This is what is leading to an unprecedented increase in home ac recharge cost for r22 units.  Some companies are quoting customers at a 300%-400% increase per pound just for the refrigerant alone.


Why AC Replacement Makes Sense If Your Home Uses an r22 Condenser

If your AC unit is over ten years old, there is a good chance it runs off r22 refrigerant. Even if your air conditioning is running perfectly fine right now, it is only a matter of time before it needs to be repaired. We encourage St Louis homeowners with r22 units to seriously consider replacing them now rather than sinking money in costly repairs knowing the refrigerant they run off of is no longer being produced. Right now is the best time to replace an r22 central air unit.

Recharging an AC System Costs Much Less if it Uses r410a Refrigerant

Again, r410a refrigerant is drastically less expensive as there is not a shortage on the market. If your r22 ac unit is in need of an air conditioning recharge, there is a good chance the cost of that service could be up to 15% of the cost of an entirely new r410a AC unit. Upgrading to a new r410a air conditioner not only will increase your AC system’s performance but will also provide peace of mind knowing you will not be in for costly maintenance costs down the road.

Energy Company Rebates on High Efficiency r410a Air Conditioners Are Very Good Right Now

Most energy companies have seen this coming for the last five years.  In response, local energy providers such as Ameren are offering rebates on many of the Energy Star Certified® high-efficiency r410a air conditioners as an incentive for homeowners to purchase high-efficiency equipment.  Right now, Ameren Missouri is offering a rebate of up to $700 for high efficient r410a air conditioners.

Superior Offers 0% Financing On AC Replacements For Qualified Customers

For many homeowners, the out-of-pocket costs for a new air conditioning unit can be a financial challenge.  Superior offers 0% financing on new r410a air conditioners for qualified buyers.  We offer a variety of different lending options to meet your specific credit needs in order to ensure you have access to a lot of the great incentives on new r410a central air units.

You Can Write Up to $500 Off Your Taxes If you Purchase an Energy Star Certified AC Unit

Recently we received news that the federal tax credits on Energy Star Certified® high-efficiency AC units are back for this year.  In addition to the rebates, you can also write off up to $500 on your taxes when you purchase a new r410a AC system.  This write-off was extended as part of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018.

Bryant HVAC Is Offering up to an Additional $350 Off their High Efficiency AC Units

As a Factory Authorized Bryant dealer, we can also provide an additional $350 rebate when your purchase a high-efficiency Bryant Evolution Extreme® r410a unit.  The Evolution Extreme® model from Bryant® boasts an incredible 20.5 SEER level.  The Variable speed technology runs the condenser at the optimal speed based on your home’s cooling needs to ensure maximum comfort and efficiency.  This rebate can be used with Ameren’s $700 rebate.

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