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Do You Think Your AC Needs Freon? Here's What You Need to Know

Wednesday, May 08, 2024

Primary Blog/HVAC/Do You Think Your AC Needs Freon? Here's What You Need to Know

Summertime is synonymous with long days, warm sunsets, and, unfortunately, the relentless battle to keep our homes cool and comfortable. For many of us, our air conditioning (AC) systems are the unsung heroes of the season, tirelessly working to ensure our homes remain comfortable. Yet, like all heroes, even our dependable AC units can encounter challenges, such as the need for Freon.

Understanding when your AC system might need Freon and how to address this need is crucial for maintaining a comfortable home environment.

What is Freon, and Why is it Important?

Freon is the common name for chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs), and related compounds, which are used as refrigerants within air conditioning systems. These refrigerants are key to the cooling process, absorbing the heat from indoor air and releasing it outside, keeping your home cool and comfortable.

However, it's important to note that due to environmental concerns, many Freon-type refrigerants, especially R-22, have been phased out in favor of more eco-friendly alternatives like R-410A and more. Knowing which type of refrigerant your AC system uses is essential for proper maintenance and compliance with environmental regulations.

Signs Your AC System May Need Freon

Less Cool Air: If you've noticed that your AC isn't cooling as effectively as it once did, it could be a sign that the refrigerant levels are low.

Longer Cooling Times: Similarly, if your system takes longer to cool your home, it might indicate a need for more refrigerant.

Increased Energy Bills: Unexplained spikes in your energy bills can be a symptom of an inefficient AC, possibly due to low Freon levels.

Ice on Compressor: An iced-over compressor often signals a refrigerant issue and should not be ignored.

Hissing or Bubbling Noises: Such sounds could indicate a leak in your AC system, which means Freon could be escaping.

Addressing a Freon Shortage

Call a Professional

When it comes to handling refrigerants, it's always best to call in an EPA-licensed HVAC professional. Not only do they have the right tools and expertise, but handling Freon requires certification due to its hazardous nature and the environmental regulations surrounding its use. A professional can accurately diagnose the issue, safely replenish your AC's refrigerant, and check for leaks or other concerns that might be affecting efficiency.

Preventive Maintenance

Regular maintenance of your AC unit can prevent several issues, including leaks that cause low refrigerant levels. Annual servicing by a professional ensures your system is in top shape, operating efficiently, and not leaking precious Freon.

Toward a Cooler Tomorrow

Recognizing the signs that your AC may need Freon is the first step towards ensuring your home remains the cool oasis you cherish during the warmer months. While it may be tempting for DIY enthusiasts to tackle AC issues alone, the safety and complexity involved in handling refrigerants mean this is one area where professional involvement is non-negotiable.

Yet, understanding these signs and the reasons behind them empowers you as a homeowner. It allows you to make informed decisions about your home's cooling needs, ensuring that when you do call in the experts, you're knowledgeable about what your AC system requires to keep performing its heroic duties.

​Remember, a well-maintained AC unit not only provides you with comfort but also peace of mind, knowing that your home's climate control is efficient, effective, and environmentally conscious. Here's to a cool, comfortable summer ahead!

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Hi, I'm Derek Cole

GM, Simmons One Hour Heating and Air

With a career spanning over two decades in the HVAC industry, Derek Cole has climbed his way to becoming General Manager of Simmons One Hour. His impressive journey was recognized by News magazine who awarded him Top 40 under 40 honors, as well as Entrepreneur Magazine's Franchise Player Spotlight feature. Notable networks such as CBS, FOX and NBC have also featured him discussing home comfort tips on their programs while publications like Huffington Post and Bloomberg Business highlight his success story with One Hour Heating & Air Conditioning® .

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