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Price of Freon for some air conditioners to skyrocket due to EPA phase-out

Posted at 7:29 AM, Apr 24, 2018

BROOKFIELD -- You may not know the chemical used in your A/C, but that may soon change.

The U.S. government will soon stop the manufacturing of a chemical, eating away at the ozone. It is called 'R-22.'

R-22 contains chlorine that can deplete the ozone when exposed. This is why it will no longer be manufactured or imported in the United States, starting in 2020. The price has skyrocketed since this announcement.

Eble Park Ice Arena in Brookfield, Wisconsin has been using this type of freon since it opened nearly 30 years ago.

The facility is owned by the Waukesha County Park System. The county has made about $100,000 in upgrades to this ice rink.

Waukesha County Park System Director Duane Grimm said that is a far better deal than switching over to a common chemical used these days, such as ammonia.

"This will save us money to replace all the chiller plant here we would also have to replace the floor all the piping under the floor," Grimm said. "If we did this you're kind of looking at $2 million to $2.5 million.

This may affect you at home. Air conditioning units before the 2010 cutoff most likely still use the outdated refrigerant, if you spot 'R-22' or 'R-410A' on your compressor unit.

You could still buy some recycled R-22 after the cutoff date in two years. It's going to be expensive. An instructor at MATC tells us it will run you about $500 dollars for just 30 pounds.

For more information on 'R-22' Freon, visit the EPA's website.