2025 Air Conditioning Refrigerant Changes and What it Means to You

In the market for a new air conditioner? Buying now may provide distinct advantages over next year’s models.

We take air conditioning for granted and — as long as the house is comfortable when you walk in — you don’t give much thought to the air conditioner itself. And even less thought to the refrigerant. Effective January 1, 2025, however, the coolant inside your air conditioner will be changing and it may have a significant impact on costs, installation, and new technology. New sensors. New charging procedures. New regulations.

Technician services air conditioner outside as part of routine heating and cooling maintenance.


Wait – there’s different types of refrigerants?

Yes — and there are two that will meet the new global warming standards affecting air conditioners: R32 and R454B. As a proud Carrier supplier, we will be working with R454B and what Carrier is calling “Puron Advanced”. The benefit of R454B is that it will meet air conditioner emissions standards for the next ten years, whereas the R32 will be obsolete again in five years.

Why are they doing this?

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has set Global Warming Potential (GWP) ratings of 750 or less for air conditioners sold beginning January 1, 2025. By comparison, the current common refrigerants on the market have a GWP between 1,800 and 2,200. What is GWP? According to the EPA, it is a “measure of how much energy the emissions of 1 ton of a gas will absorb over time, relative to the emissions of 1 ton of carbon dioxide (CO2).”

What affect will this have on cost?

The price of everything continues to go up (thank you, inflation) — and the new air conditioners compatible with the new coolant will be similarly more expensive and will have additional related costs above and beyond the current technology. This includes new sensors added to monitor the new coolant, and there are new mandated installation practices that will extend installation times — so labor costs will be higher next year, too. The new systems will also require all-new tools, etc., for the contractors who install them — an added cost that may affect long-term pricing.

Will air conditioning still perform the same?

Yes – you will notice no difference in performance between the new air conditioners you’ll buy next year and the models available to you this year. No difference or improvement in efficiency. No new or reduced capabilities. This is simply being done to meet the established global warming requirements. In terms of sustainability and environment, if that factors into your decisions, this is a good thing!

So, I should buy now if I want a new air conditioner at a lower cost?

Yes – universally, new air conditioners and installation will be noticeably more expensive in 2025. You will save significant dollars by buying and installing now.

Can I wait until fall or closer to the new year to purchase?

Maybe but likely not. Air conditioning manufacturers will switch over their manufacturing lines sometime this summer to start producing the new units. Once the current models are gone, they are gone. This may be a situation where investing sooner than later is the smart choice.

How can Cliff Bergin & Associates help me?

The good news – as stated previously, this is not a change that will affect your air conditioning performance. It’s a change you’ll never notice. Having said that, we’re here to help you whether you’re investing in your home this year or next year to make the right decision for your situation. Please reach out to our team at 262-242-2456.