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Simple Answer, low supply and high demand. About 25 years ago the EPA announced its plan to start the phase out and change over of R22 refrigerants and those systems that use them. By 2020, 99.9% of all R22 refrigerant and their replacement parts will be gone. Leaving what is currently in circulation left for grabs. Production for R22 stopped about 10 years ago, and recycled refrigerants have all but gone away as well. What was once a simple fix or top off to get your system back up and running has now turned into a major issue. Because of the increasing cost to purchase R22 refrigerant, most companies can not simply afford to stock it on their trucks and have chosen to no longer purchase it. Leaving only a few companies that can and will purchase the refrigerant.
So what does this mean for you, the customer. Truthfully, I wish there was a better alternative. Some companies will offer a “drop in solution” or a “retrofitted” refrigerant, some people have even seen advertisements for “cheap” freon online, these are flat out scams. It is illegal to add or drop in any other mixture or retro fit solution to your R22 system The only alternative at this point is full system replacement. There have been some solutions of completely retro fitting your R22 system to another 422D or others, however, even after 2020 those retrofits will no longer be available and puts you right back in the same situation. So needless to say, its not really a solution, more like a temporary band aid to a much bigger problem.
I know what your thinking, your just trying to up sell me into a new system or your just trying to get me to spend more money. Unfortunately, for so many years so many have scammed their customers and left them more or less out to dry. The truth is R22 is gone, their parts a very expensive to replace, and a year from now they will be completely obsolete. Even if you replace a compressor now what if your coil leaks a year from now and you can not even buy a new one and you still end up replacing your system and spending even more money. We could have taken care of the issue, got a new system with 10 year warranties and you would have the peace of mind for at least the next 10 to 15 years. Honestly, with our great partners at Wells Fargo and the financing options they give, its more affordable and easier than ever to purchase a new HVAC system. We believe in offering our customers the best service, that means not wasting your money, don’t waste hard earned cash on a bad investment.