What does it cost to “just recharge” my air conditioning system?
That is a question that we are occasionally asked. The answer is always, “We cannot just recharge it without first determining where the refrigerant has leaked out.”
It is illegal to refill an A/C system with a known leak.
Our first course of action is diagnosis. Many times the cause of non-functioning A/C is not low refrigerant but an electrical concern: a burned out switch, defective control unit or broken wire.
After testing the electrical side of your A/C system we test for proper refrigerant type and charge. If refrigerant is low we must do a leak diagnosis and find the cause. Once the leak is found and repaired we can then recharge your A/C system. With the leak(s) repaired you will usually enjoy years of trouble free operation.
Here are some interesting facts: the current A/C refrigerant is known as R134a.
This chemical replaced the previous refrigerant R12, otherwise known as Freon. R12 is nasty stuff, as one molecule of it will destroy 10,000 ozone molecules.
R134a thankfully destroys none. That is great news for our ozone layer, however R134a is not entirely benign as it has a global warming potential of 1000. This means that one molecule of R134a is 1000 times more effective than one carbon dioxide (CO2) molecule at trapping greenhouse gases in our atmosphere.
For that reason we cannot legally, or morally, “just recharge” your A/C system.