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Total Air: Blog

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Air Conditioning Refrigerant Rules


Working with A/C refrigerant is only legal when installed by licensed, certified, contracting professionals. There are many consequences for those who do so without the proper training and legal approvals. Some of those consequences include the consequences of breaking the law. A dangerous consequence is that it can greatly affect the health of you, your family and the environment. Learn, here, the rules by which ONLY licensed and certified A/C professional must follow when working with refrigerant:

  1. You can’t install your own refrigerant. Only certified technicians and contractors can purchase refrigerants intended for use with air-conditioning equipment. IT IS THE LAW. And, contractors who sell refrigerant for resale are legally responsible for ensuring that their customers are getting the right refrigerant installation.
  2. R-22 (also known as Freon) is illegal. Refrigerant R-22 was phased out worldwide due to its harmful effects on the ozone layer. If you have an old HVAC system that uses R22 and it’s just barely limping along, it is time to replace it. As per the EPA, R22 became illegal to manufacture in the United States on January 1, 2020. After that R22 refrigerant phase out date, R22 can no longer be manufactured or imported into the US.
  3. Refrigerant must be properly disposed of. The EPA requires proper refrigerant management practices by certified, contractor owners and operators of refrigeration and AC systems. It's harmful to the environment and human health. There are practices for certified person to properly disposingof refrigeration/AC equipment. Venting refrigerant by private individuals into the atmosphere is illegal.
  4. You Don’t “Top Off” Refrigerant. Refrigerant is not something that your air conditioner consumes the way a car consumes gasoline. In fact, your AC should not consume refrigerant AT ALL! Refrigerant works within a closed loop so a low charge is your indication that you’ve got a problem. How serious of a problem? Well, let’s just say that a refrigerant leak, even a “minor” one, will demand prompt attention from Total Air.

Not having the proper level of refrigerant will consequently compromise the operation of your air conditioning system. If you run the A/C and it is low on refrigerant, cooling and efficiency drop, leaving you to pay more for less comfort in your home. Your system will also suffer premature wear and tear, as it works harder and harder to cool your home. And, the evaporator coil could get too cold due to decreased heat transfer, leading to the icing of condensation on the coil. It will eventually destroy your compressor.

If you suspect you have a refrigerant leak or problem with the cooling elements of your air conditioning system, call the licensed, certified and experienced A/C professionals in El Paso…call Total Air. Call 915-585-0909 or schedule at


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