Dangers and Potential Hazards of Old Air Conditioners

Most air conditioners will last about 10-15 years before they need to be replaced, while well-maintained units may survive longer.


However, an aging AC unit still loses efficiency over time, consuming more and more energy to maintain the same temperatures. There are also dangers and potential hazards of old air conditioners that homeowners need to be aware of.

1. Older AC units have older refrigerants.

If your unit is more than 10 years old, there’s a good chance it’s using R22 or Freon, which was widely used in refrigerators and AC systems for decades but got phased out in 2020 due to its contribution to global warming.


Aside from R22 or Freon, CFC refrigerants including R-11, R-12, R-13, R-14, and R-15 are also harmful to the environment.

You can find out which refrigerant your AC is using by checking the owner’s manual, or the exterior unit of the AC.


But keep in mind that refrigerant leaks also occur over time as your AC gets older, as its parts are subjected to mechanical wear and tear.


If leaks occur, they should be handled by a professional. Otherwise, you’ll risk exposure to refrigerants, which can cause (temporary) health complications.

2. Electrical issues have developed with your AC.

Over time, electrical issues can develop with your AC, including problems with wiring, capacitors, and overloaded circuit breakers which can be a serious fire hazard.


Loose electrical connections and old or damaged wiring may lead to sparks. It can also create the need for an expensive repair.

3. Your old AC may pose several health risks.

Old, moldy air conditioners may increase your chances of respiratory infection. Molds may also pose several health risks, aggravating allergy symptoms. Essentially, having an older unit can escalate the effects of chronic illnesses you’re already dealing with.


Unlike modern air conditioners that can filter out contaminants more efficiently, an older AC unit can negatively impact indoor air quality. It can also be dangerous due to the build-up of fungi, bacteria, and pollen which has increased over time.

Upgrading your AC? Let’s help you decide!

When you’re depending on your AC to run smoothly and efficiently, you want someone who understands your need for a cleaner, more efficient and safer air conditioning system.


That’s where you can count on a Good Guy if you’re investing in a modern AC installation. We’re more than happy to discuss with you the benefits of upgrading to a more modern unit, including the potential savings you get to keep in the long run.


Our technicians help you get the most out of your AC. We’re also available for routine tune-up or maintenance, and all kinds of heating and air conditioning work. it’s easy and simple to schedule an appointment using our exclusive Good Guys Home Services Mobile app.

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