When the Car AC Needs Regassing
If you’ve ever turned on the air conditioning in your car and discovered it’s no longer blowing the cool air you want on a hot day, you’re probably familiar with the need for an aircon regas.
The process involves removing all traces of air, moisture and refrigerant gas (freon) in a process called refrigerant evacuation. The system then gets put through a leak test before being re-filled with new refrigerant and pressurised.
Owners of vehicles typically should have a car air conditioning service annually, in which their air conditioner will be regassed, to enjoy optimal effectiveness.
Of course, the other main environment we most commonly frequent that allows us to enjoy the benefits of air conditioning is our own home.
So, when the air conditioner in your living room or bedroom loses its cooling efficiency or stops blowing hot air when you need it most, does that mean you need an air conditioning regas for your home as well? Let’s explore that question further.
Does My Air Conditioner Need to be Regassed?
When the air conditioner starts failing on them and begins only blowing warm air, many homeowners get straight on the phone to their local air conditioner technician.
They think that their home air conditioning unit needs to be regassed in the same way that their car air conditioner does. And it’s understandable that they’d base that assumption on what they’ve done with their car air conditioning system.
However, on most occasions, a home aircon regas is actually rarely necessary. A thorough air conditioning service can often reveal that there are other potential problems preventing your system from working properly.
If your home air conditioner has been installed correctly, it should rarely – if ever – lose its refrigerant gas. Unlike car air conditioning which typically uses rubber and plastic hoses and connections, both of which become porous with use and the passage of time, home air conditioning pipes are usually made of copper.
The connections are mechanically sealed by a licensed professional as well, using a special flaring tool. This generally prevents refrigerant gases from escaping the system.
All that being said, it’s not completely impossible for these refrigerant gases to escape your air conditioner. In certain cases, an aircon regas may be the necessary course of action.
When is an Air Con Regas Necessary?
As we’ve already mentioned, air conditioning systems that have been installed correctly should be able to go through their lifespan with little to no need for an aircon regas.
However, there are situations where a home air conditioner regas may be necessary. Your air conditioner may require regassing if:
- There is a manufacturing fault
- The initial installation was poorly done
- Degradation of your pipes has resulted in a refrigerant leak
Air conditioners that are leaking gas will definitely be losing cooling efficiency, so it can be important to get the regassing done urgently. If you have a new air conditioner, it could be a case of poor installation.
For an air conditioning unit that is nearing or has reached the end of its lifespan, a professional air conditioning technician may recommend that a complete replacement of your system might be the more cost effective option in the long run.
Also, check the Zoned Energy Rating Label on your indoor or outdoor units to see if you are using the right size air conditioner for the space you’re heating or cooling.
How to Tell If Your Air Conditioner is Losing Gas
Generally, there are four tell-tale signs that indicate your air conditioning system is low on gas, and that you may be in need of an aircon regas.
These signs include:
- If your air con is otherwise in good working order, but the unit is only blowing hot air, it can be a sign of a refrigerant leak. Warm air in the middle of summer is the last thing you need.
- A warning light on the internal unit of your air conditioning system indicates that your gas is running low.
- The indoor coil behind your air con filters has shown signs of freezing.
- For split system air conditioning units, the copper pipes attached to the outdoor unit are showing similar signs of freezing.
If you hear strange noises coming from your air conditioner, particularly buzzing or hissing noises, that may also indicate a refrigerant leak in your system. A thorough air conditioning service will determine the presence and (if applicable) the cause of your freon gas leak.
From that the air con technician will be able to decide whether an air conditioner regas is the right course of action.
Alternatively, they may suggest that maintenance, repairs or replacing other parts in your unit is the better option. An old air conditioner may have had it’s day and be in need of a replacement.
Which Air Con Systems Do NOT Require Re-Gassing?
If you’re looking for cooling systems to help reduce the indoor temperature of your home, but particularly want something that won’t lead to refrigerant leaks and the need for an aircon regas, your choice of air conditioning services is pretty much restricted to one.
Evaporative cooling systems are the only type of air conditioner that does not use a refrigerant to cool the air. Instead, it draws in warm outdoor air and passes it through a filter consisting of a number of moistened pads.
This enables the evaporation process, which is essential to pumping cold air throughout your home. As there is no refrigerant used in cooling your home, you can avoid the need for an aircon regas.
Other types, including portable air conditioners and split system air conditioners, may need an air conditioning regas occasionally.
Reduce refrigerant leaks (or the possibility of them) by having your heating and cooling system serviced regularly. Whatever your air conditioning needs are, Mr Emergency is the number to call.
Can I Do My Own Aircon Regas?
So, you’ve determined that you’re in need of an air conditioning re gas. Where to now?
If you’re wondering whether or not regassing your air conditioner is something you can do yourself, let me squash that possibility right here and now. Sorry.
An aircon regas can only be carried out by a suitably accredited, trained air conditioning technician with a valid ARCTICK licence. People working or training in refrigeration and air conditioning are required by law to have this licence, which means that an aircon regas is not a DIY job.
Once an aircon regas is done by an experienced and accredited professional, you’ll get the cost-effective and energy efficient service you’ve come to expect from your air conditioner.
If you’re in search of air conditioner regas services, contact the heating and cooling experts at Mr Emergency today. We can do an air conditioner regas or any other kind of repair, along with installing a new air conditioning unit when your old model has had its day.
Mr Emergency can service all types and major brands, including ActronAir, AquaMAX, Coolair, Mitsubishi Electric and many others. We’ll meet all your air conditioning needs.
Please note: This information is provided for advice purposes only. Regulations differ from state to state, so please consult your local authorities or an industry professional before proceeding with any work. See our Terms & Conditions here.