You might have heard about freon and its effects not only on the ozone layer but on humans as well. Freon is present in most cooling units, which may make you worry and ask a series of questions, including, “Does my air conditioner use freon? Do all air conditioners use freon? What really is freon and what is its effect?” We’re here to tell you that your questions about freon and air conditioners are about to be answered.
What is freon?
Freon is a Chlorofluorocarbon (CFC). CFC is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless gas that is used in refrigeration. The freon gas is also known as the R-22 gas, and its job is to absorb the heat from the outside air and release cold air for your comfort. The gas can be used in any cooling unit at home, in cars, and even in freezers.
The effects of freon
In 1974, a researcher from the University of California made a research on the dangers of using freon gas. Upon a series of researches it was discovered that the freon gas negatively affects the ozone layer. It was further revealed that it also releases another gas called HCF-23 into the air. This HFC-23 gas has been proven to be quite dangerous and adds to global warming. Although the use of freon gas is highly monitored, most of our old machines still use the gas.
In addition, the freon gas is responsible for freon poisoning, which happens when a person inhales too much air from an air conditioner made of freon gas. When this gas is inhaled in large quantities, it possesses the ability to cause critical consequences and even death. The signs associated with freon poisoning are vomiting, dizziness, unconsciousness, seizures, and tiredness.
Do all air conditioners have freon?
Many air conditioners produced before 2003 use freon as the gas that cools the hot air gotten from outside. However, most air conditioners produced after 2003 do not use freon gas due to the restrictions placed on it. Cooling equipment produced after 2003 use safer refrigerants for cooling, and since 2010 most air conditioners use Puron gas, also known as R-410A, which have been proven to do no harm to the ozone layer.
How to identify which refrigerant is used for my air conditioner
The refrigerant used for your air conditioner can be identified by checking the nameplate of the air conditioner. The nameplate containing this information is possibly on the outdoor unit. If you’re interested in a unit that does not use freon, then always check the label before purchasing.
Freon gas is necessary for your cooling equipment to function pretty well, however, you may not want to get entangled with the ethical or health problems associated with freon gas. If you’re not comfortable with having a machine in your home that uses it, or you feel you have inhaled too much of it, give yourself some peace of mind and update your air conditioning unit with one that was made after the year 2003.