Freon use

Old 04-13-19, 08:23 PM
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Freon use

For the past 5 years, we have to have our central unit recharged with Freon before summer just like clockwork. Our unit is 35 years old and I know we need a new one but that hasnít been possible. I have asked about some sort of sealant. I know you can use it in an automobile. My A/C man says no. Is he scamming us for the yearly money??
Old 04-13-19, 10:17 PM
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Leak seal can destroy the equipment.
I’ve only ever used it on equipment that nobody cared if it died or not.
At that age you shouldn’t put any money towards the unit, but he could spend a half hour looking for the leak.
Old 04-14-19, 03:52 AM
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I would look for the refrigerant leak. Usually, but not always, there will be an oily residue at the spot of the leak. Most leaks occur at a connection point. If you find one have it corrected. My A/C unit has not yet needed a corrective refrigerant charge in 21 years. A tight system may never need to have refrigerant added. You did not say if your HVAC guy actually looked for a leak or just added refrigerant. In my opinion, leak detector dyes are OK but sealants are not.
Old 04-14-19, 09:54 PM
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You're going to be forced to replace it soon. R22 is just about off the market.
Typically with a system of that age.... the indoor evaporator coil rots thru.
Old 04-15-19, 09:05 AM
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It is possible that you have had a repairable leak all this time but did not have a tech that was motivated enough to locate it.

You need someone to check for leaks and then make a decision based on where the leak is.
You would see him/her with a leak detector tool examine the indoor coil and all it's fittings, follow the piping and then completely check the outdoor unit and all it's fittings.
Some leaks are difficult to find but I would say it could take a full hour of searching with a leak detector to locate it/them.

Have you seen your tech do this or did he just visually inspect everything and come up with a diagnosis?

Another thing is that R-22 is increasing in price and will soon be unavailable, there are however drop-in replacements that a tech can use.
I know, we have many R-22 units in my workplace I regulary convert them!
Old 04-15-19, 01:42 PM
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r22 being phased out isn't a good reason to not repair a unit.

The refrigerant will be available in reclaimed form past 2020 as older units are retired and there are drop ins.

Now a 30+ year old unit isn't worth a leak repair regardless of what refrigerant is in it.

Maybe get a used window unit or two off kijiji (as to not continue to refill a leaking system and wreck the atmosphere) until you can afford replacement.

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