(916) 381-4611 Serving Northern California (see map)


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R-22 Refrigerant Updates

R-22 Refrigerant is phasing out
faster than anticipated


Backround on R-22 phaseout 

In 1987 the Montreal Protocol, an international environmental agreement, established requirements that began the worldwide phase-out of ozone-depleting CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons). In 1992 the Montreal Protocol was amended to establish a schedule for the phaseout of HCFCs (hydrochlorofluorocarbons). The Montreal Protocol is codified in U.S. law through Title VI of the Clean Air Act. The Clean Air Act is the law that defines EPA's authority and responsibilities for protecting and improving the nation's air quality and the stratospheric ozone layer.

COAC Critical Update - R-22 Refrigerant Phase Out

R-22 (Freon) is the refrigerant in 90% of the commercial air conditioning systems in use today and has been for R-22 Phase Out Graphic COACdecades. The EPA strictly controls the production and importation of R-22.

The alternative approved refrigerant is 410A, but due to the higher pressures needed to be effective, cannot be used in R-22 systems. 410A systems have only been available for commercial-grade HVAC systems for a couple of years and thus the bulk of the building stock in Sacramento uses R-22.

Due to the rapid increase in price, contractors & suppliers are beginning to hoard R-22 supplies and thus creating shortages, limited availability, and steadily increasing prices. Beyond the increasing price, which is manageable, the growing problem is the uncertainty about the availability of R-22. If the availability of R-22 is in jeopardy then it will affect all businesses, industry, IT, and commercial real estate that want to repair or recharge their AC systems.

If conditioned air is critical to running the business and R-22 is not available then an alternative refrigerant will be needed, or the entire system will need to be changed to use 410A. Not all alternative refrigerants are compatible or deliver the needed performance and cooling capacity and the lead times to replace entire systems can be from 1 week to 2 months, either solution would be unacceptable during the hot summer days.

40 year HVAC Veteran, Robert Plotner, Cooper Oates Air Conditioning’s Service Operations Manager explains, “There are alternative refrigerants that work in R-22 units, but there significant hurdles with changing refrigerants types that create additional problems. Currently there are no ‘drop-in’ mechanical replacements for the conversion of an air conditioning unit from R-22 to 410a, due primarily to the increased pressure that is required for 410A to be effective as a refrigerant.”

EPA’s production restrictions on R-22 manufacturing are accelerating due to an EPA determination that there is an oversupply of R-22. These production restrictions will make R-22 more and more difficult to acquire and increasingly more expensive.

 

NEWS UPDATES:

EPA Tightens R-22 Spigot and Causes Rationing by Distributors

Jan 8, 2013:  A recent EPA notification announced additional limits on the importation and production of the R-22 refrigerant to only 39 million pounds resulting in price spikes and severe rationing of the supply.  As an example, COAC was recently buying R-22 by the pallet (40 jugs per pallet) and now we are limited to 2 jugs per order. Additionally, in the last 6 months the price of R-22 locally has spiked 240%. In some parts of the country, the rate is double that increase.

DuPont, manufacturer of the Freon brand of R-22, temporarily suspended all orders of Freon until the supply situation was stabilized and the EPA notifications could be fully digested.

If your building's HVAC equipment uses R-22 , now is the time to plan for the eventual phase out of that equipment. Please contact COAC with your questions or concerns about changing your equipment. Contact us at 916.381.4611.

 

EPA curtails the supply of R22

Jan 20, 2012: The EPA announced an immediate, 45% reduction in both production and imports of R22. This constitutes an additional (-35,000,000 lb) reduction, in the level already legislated by the Clean Air Act. As a result, all the major manufactures have announced significant price increases, and are currently limiting shipments. The potential for allocation based on historic purchase level has also been discussed. Although R22 production will continue thru 12-31-2019, it is likely that this action will have a dramatic effect on both the price and supply of R22 moving forward.

I have confidence in Cooper Oates and would hire this company over any other HVAC company in the state.

Janet Rollins
Sacramento County Public Law Library

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Your team was very professional and detailed. The installers worked very hard and did an excellent job installing the units.

Joanne Kim
Rehabilitation Management Systems, Inc.

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I would like to thank you all for the successful completion of the HVAC redesign in the Bureau of Nursing.

Mark Elliott
Department of Consumer Affairs

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Awesome—You tell the bosses over there that your service tech is incredible—fast, knowledgeable…

Rhonda Higgins
DMG North, Inc.

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Dispatch is always available, whether I’m in the office, inspecting properties or out of town. COAC eases property…

Sharyn Verdon
Ramco Enterprises, Inc.

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I have confidence in Cooper Oates and would hire this company over any other HVAC company in the state.

Janet Rollins
Sacramento County Public Law Library

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What a nice change from what we have dealt with for years. This has made a piece of my job tons easier.

Teresa Heckley, ASO II
DHHS - Facility Management

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We want you to know that we are very pleased with the service you gave us, I especially want to thank you…

Tom Cabrera
Mailing Systems, Inc.

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I have confidence in Cooper Oates and would hire this company over any other HVAC company in the state.

Janet Rollins
Sacramento County Public Law Library

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I have confidence in Cooper Oates and would hire this company over any other HVAC company in the state.

Janet Rollins
Sacramento County Public Law Library

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