In 2008 the EPA mandated a phaseout of R-22 refrigerant starting in 2010 and ending in 2020 with the refrigerant no longer being produced in any capacity. Since 2008 the price of R22 refrigerant has gone up every year incrementally until SS&B Heating & Cooling charges $160 for the first pound added today compared to $36 when the mandate was announced. When you have a failure on an R22 air conditioner or heat pump you must first decide if it is worth investing any money in repairing. If the failure involves any major component such as a compressor or a refrigerant leak in the condenser or evaporator coil the decision is an easy one, NO! The cost to repair or replace any major component can easily cost 60 to 70% of the cost of a new air conditioner. We no longer replace R22 compressors at all for this reason. Just like a good mechanic would not advise someone to put a new motor in a $4000 car if it cost $2800, we would strongly suggest no one make any repair on an R-22 air conditioner at all that involves adding refrigerant. If your air conditioner was installed before 2004 you should plan on investing in a new home comfort system. When you get a new air conditioner not only do you get the newer, more environmentally friendly refrigerant, you also get a more efficient air conditioner. The new minimum efficiency of 13 SEER uses somewhere in the neighborhood of 35% less electricity compared to the average 15-year-old air conditioner, a 20 SEER unit will save approximately 55% of the power consumption dedicated to cooling the home. As the temperature in Springfield Mo. warms up it is a good time to have your air conditioner serviced by SS&B Heating & Cooling. Don’t forget to ask about our Peak Performance Maintenance Plan. You live life, we will take care of your home comfort!