Two HVAC industry changes go into effect in 2018 that affect how some refrigerants for HVAC systems are handled, and the amount of ventilation required for new homes. These changes will affect you if you need an older air conditioner or heat pump serviced, or if you’re buying a new home.
Refrigerant Collection and Reporting
Starting in 2018, HVAC technicians who handle ozone-depleting refrigerants like R-22 or Freon will need to pass a hands-on test before they’ll be licensed to work with it. As the deadline for phasing out R-22 becomes close, the EPA is increasing its handling requirements. In prior years, technicians only needed to pass a written test and had few reporting requirements.
As a homeowner, you’ll notice the phaseout immediately in your pocketbook if your system uses R-22. Its cost has risen substantially since 2010, and will continue to do so as supplies diminish. You may find that recharging a system that uses R-22 or Freon won’t make economic sense.
Beyond the handling and pricing of R-22, HVAC technicians will need to record where the amount of refrigerant they remove from systems and the disposal methods.
The volume of home ventilation is part of the building code, and the HVAC industry changes will affect homes built in 2018 and beyond. The standard is reverting back to the amount required in 2010, which is slightly lower than the amount in 2017.
Home ventilation includes the exhaust fans in the kitchen and bathrooms, as well as balanced systems, like energy recovery ventilators (ERVs). ERVs are the most energy efficient way to maintain high air quality because they extract the energy of the outgoing air and put it into the fresh, incoming air. These fans exhaust air at the same time they pull in fresh. The air can freshen a single room, or ERVs can be part of your HVAC system.
If you’re using an older air conditioner or heat pump, the HVAC industry changes might affect you directly. To learn more repairing or replacing it, contact Rinaldi’s Energy Solutions, providing HVAC services for Orlando-area homeowners.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Orlando, Florida and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).
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