Freon is the trade name of a group of refrigerant gasses that have been in use since the late 1920s. Freon products have been used extensively in commercial applications, such as food storage, processing, and transportation. Most homeowners are familiar with Freon’s use in refrigerators, freezers, and air conditioning units.
Freon gasses fall into the categories of chlorofluorocarbon (CFCs) and hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFs), which have been found to negatively affect the earth’s ozone layer. As a result, they have been in the process of being phased out since 1987 as part of the Montreal Protocol. That’s raised a number of questions for homeowners as they look to repair or replace household appliances, especially air conditioning units, that use Freon.
Here’s what you need to know to decide how to handle your Freon-based AC.