Why an AC Leaking Refrigerant is Dangerous

Posted: 2019-08-29

Any mechanical or electrical system leaking fluids, whether visible or not, is definitely a problem. Your AC is no exception. It’s able to cool your home during a hot summer day because it absorbs heat and creates cool air. This technology is made possible by utilizing refrigerant, which is a substance or mixture, usually a fluid, which undergoes phase transitions from liquid to gas and back again.

In other words, the refrigerant is a key component of your air conditioning system. Without it, your AC won’t be able to cool your home.

Four Seasons Air Specialists is your top HVAC company in Hugo MN that offers the finest AC refrigerant leak repair services.

Are Refrigerant Leaks Dangerous?

A straightforward answer to this question is yes. Not only is an air conditioner leaking refrigerant dangerous to the environment, but it’s also a health and safety risk. Having said that, not every refrigerant in use today poses the same level of danger.

Some of the most known refrigerants today, including chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) are harmful to the environment. R22, which is used in older air conditioning systems, is presently being banned from manufacturing and importation because of its ozone-depleting effects.

In addition to environmental effects, refrigerant leaks can also negatively affect the human body. Exposure to leaking refrigerant can cause a number of adverse symptoms and can even cause death. These symptoms include labored breathing, irregular heartbeat, seizures, bleeding in the lungs, nausea, vomiting, headaches, irritation of eyes, ears, and throat, cough, skin burns, loss of consciousness, and decreased mental status.

How Does an AC Leak Refrigerant?

While most people think that an AC uses a little bit of refrigerant each time it cycles, causing it to slowly leak out over time, but the truth is that refrigerant consistently charges itself. Therefore, there is no need for your AC’s refrigerant levels to decline. If you notice deterioration in your AC’s cooling power, it can be that the system is not properly installed, there is corrosion of metal parts, or there are factory defects within the AC system.

Refrigerant Poisoning

When a person is exposed to leaking refrigerant, he is at risk of refrigerant poisoning. Certain household appliances such as refrigerators and air conditioners contain refrigerant, otherwise known as Freon, a leading refrigerant brand. This substance is almost odorless and tasteless and can cause severe symptoms once inhaled in dangerous amounts. In some extreme cases, refrigerant poisoning can be fatal.

Common Signs of Refrigerant Leaks

Inadequate Cooling

When your AC doesn’t have the right amount of refrigerant, it will take much longer for your home to cool down, since there isn’t enough substance to remove the heat.

Freezing AC

Your AC is designed to cool your home, not create ice. So when your air conditioner freezes up, it might be caused by leaking refrigerant. When your system is working properly, the coils absorb the heat through the help of the refrigerant. Without the right amount of refrigerant, the coils are unable to absorb the heat, causing the system to ice up.

Unusually High Energy Bills

Without the right levels of refrigerant, your air conditioner has to work harder than usual, using more energy in the process. This causes your electricity bills to increase. Not only is leaking refrigerant costly in terms of power bills, but it’s also a sign of a potential major repair, specifically a compressor replacement, which is a very expensive type of repair.

How Four Seasons Air Specialists Can Help

Leaking refrigerant is definitely dangerous, but it can be resolved. A qualified technician possesses the knowledge and skills to clearly identify an air conditioner leaking refrigerant, seal the leaks, and recharge the system with just the right amount of refrigerant.

Our technicians here at Four Seasons Air Specialists are duly trained directly by Lennox to deal with such cases. They are also NATE-certified, which means they have undergone rigid training and certification to ensure quality workmanship. With us, you can be certain that your AC refrigerant leak problem will be resolved in the most effective ways. Our goal is not only to keep you comfortable, but more importantly, we desire to keep you safe from HVAC-related health concerns, including the effects of refrigerant leaks. We are your dependable Forest Lake AC repair company.