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What type of refrigerant is used in air conditioners?

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Quick Answer

The most commonly used refrigerant in air conditioners is R-22, or Freon, as of 2015. Freon is being phased out from use due to the harmful effects on the environment it creates and should be phased out completely by 2020, according to the U.S. EPA.

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Full Answer

As of 2015, the most common alternative to Freon being used is R-410A. R-410A is environmentally friendly and causes no harm to the ozone layer. Other common alternatives to R-22 include R-407C, R-438A and R-422. Existing systems designed for R-22 use cannot substitute alternative refrigerants without risk of damage to the unit. The manufacture of systems using R-22 is prohibited, as of 2010.

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