EPA To Phase Out All HCFC Refrigerants By 2020

That sounds ominous don’t you think?  And, as a real estate agent, I say to myself, why do I need to know this? I really don’t want to have to know about it since my expertise is in the real estate market, doing what is best for my clients, and mentoring other agents to be the best they can be.  However, in offering the highest quality service, we have to know many other things – one of which is understanding inspection reports and the latest rules and regulations concerning the mechanical functions of a home.

The fact is that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency began phasing out R22 refrigerant in recent years because it was compounding the depletion of the Earth’s ozone layer.  In 2010 and 2015, the EPA placed specific limitations on the production and import of R22 and by 2020, R22 will essentially no longer be allowed. Commonly referred to as Freon, the price has continued to soar as the supply has become more scarce in response to these restrictions.

So, what does this mean to all of us who still have units that use the R22 refrigerant?  Most likely, you will need to ask your AC contractor, but if your unit was built before 2010, it utilizes the R22 refrigerant that is being discontinued.

A few things can be done to prevent homeowners from having to replace their older units.  One is to keep the unit serviced properly so that leaks don’t occur which require the addition of refrigerants to keep them cooling properly.  Another proposed plan to delay replacing units is to ask your AC contractor about the possibility of retrofitting your current units to operate using an approved refrigerant.

Basically, the thing we realtors should prepare buyers and sellers for is to be sure they know the type of units they are buying or selling, and make sure it is noted in an inspection report.  

Whew, the next blog I write I intend to focus on a more exciting subject. ☺


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  1. JP O'Grady Canary Gold 4:56