New A/C Freon Rules

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OLATHE, Kan. – It’s hard to think about air conditioning with it so cold outside, but a new government rule could impact your unit.

As we look ahead to big issues in 2010, freon will be one.

It’s hard to think about in the winter, but the marketing techniques are already heating up.

Air conditioning businesses used countdowns on their Web sites, counting down until the new year and new rules governing the freon in your air conditioner.

It’s a switch that has some companies claiming your A/C could become useless.

“That immediately would scare you half to death,” Ed Beckert said.

The Environmental Protection Agency and trade groups are alerting consumers to the facts.

“Don’t panic it’s no big deal,” National Home Service Contract Association Counsel Art Chartrand said.

NHSCA is the trade group for service contracts you may buy with a new home.

Most homes have R-22 freon.

It will be phased out over the next 20 years.

The first step took place January first. R-22 can no longer be put into newly made a/c units.

“If you have an existing R-22 type unit that can still be repaired,” Chartrand said.

But some businesses claim repair costs will skyrocket as supplies dwindle. The EPA says prices should remain affordable with this slow phaseout over the next 20 years.

“If they get the real facts it helps people make better decisions and less costly ones,” Ed Becker said.