According to the Environmental Protection Agency, many air conditioning units contain cooling refrigerants made up of ozone-depleting substances and greenhouse gases that harm the environment and the Earth’s ozone layer. This makes it illegal to throw your air conditioner out like you would with any piece of trash. To help you save time, we have compiled a list of legal ways to recycle your air conditioner.
Safe Methods of Recycling Old Air Conditioners
Air conditioner recycling is not as difficult as you might think. Become familiar with the process of disposing of your air conditioner. You may just find that some methods could help protect the environment and put a little extra money in your pocket.
Local & Regional Programs
A bounty program is a special program sponsored by a local or regional utility company. It involves homeowners, such as yourself, being paid a “bounty” when they come to collect and recycle your old air conditioner appliance. Rather than being paid outright, you may also be offered a rebate or discount toward a newer, better model of the air conditioner you just turned in. If you want to find out more, call a representative from your electric provider to determine whether this or a similar disposal opportunity is being offered in your locality.
Check your local or state government’s website for salvage yard location listing’s in your area. In addition to this resource, the EPA provides a national list of Responsible Appliance Disposal (RAD)-partnered recycling facilities that could be of help to you. If neither website is pulling up sufficient air conditioning recycling options near you, try directly contacting your local representative to find the best local salvage yard.
State Disposal Programs
Since the manner in which you recycle your air conditioner is regulated across local and federal municipalities, you will want to call your local sanitation department to be sure you understand how to prepare your air conditioner for disposal. You will need to know whether it’s going in a landfill or recycling processor.
Your local sanitation department can talk you through which disposal area to transport your air conditioner or how to get in contact with qualified technicians to remove its refrigerant. The procedure to get rid of your old or damaged air conditioner is not far off from how you would go about throwing away your refrigerator or freezer.
The easiest way to dispose of an air conditioner is to hire a sanitation organization that will directly handle all aspects of the air conditioning recycling process for you, from refrigerant to unit removal. You may pay a small service fee or you may be paid for your unit’s scrap value, which could increase with the size of your air conditioner. Keep in mind that if your air conditioner is still in good condition, you could instead resell, donate, or refurbish it for a better environmental impact.
Retailer or Manufacturer Trade-In Programs
If you’re looking for ways to recycle your air conditioner, options may be available through your local retailer. Before you buy a replacement air conditioner, find out if your local store will take or throw away your old or broken model for you. Often, they’ll consider this disposal as part of their service to you during your new air conditioner purchase. They may also reduce the cost of the new unit as part of a trade-in deal.
4 Reasons to Replace an Old Air Conditioner
Besides getting fresh, cold air circulated into your home again, there are a variety of reasons to purchase an energy-efficient air conditioning system. We have created a list of situations that may require the purchase of a new air conditioner.
Home renovations are great for getting you the house of your dreams, but can really mess with your home’s HVAC system if it’s not taken into consideration. Replace your air conditioner during a home remodel and sleep well knowing that licensed contractors have considered its placement relative to other heat-generating appliances, doors, and windows. To prevent cycling and air distribution problems, it’s important to hire a certified contractor to install your new air conditioner.
High Utility Bills
You may be paying energy bills far higher than that of similarly-sized households because of your air conditioner’s age. Older models are not as energy efficient as those for sale today. Even switching from a 10 year-old version could help you see savings as high as 40% on your energy usage. The average life cycle of an air conditioner is 20 years. If your air conditioning system is older than 10 years, it’s important to start thinking about future problems and replacing it.
Not long ago, no one had ever seen self-sanitizing handles, humidity controls, or silent components—now they have a huge impact on your air quality experience. Even new fan blade shapes have made your air conditioning operation a fraction of the sound level it used to be at. Consider what features you would prefer to see on your air conditioner and research whether or not they are available on newer models to find out if it’s time to partake in air conditioning recycling.
Your air conditioner will need more and more repairs as it nears the end of its operating life. Unsure if your air conditioner is ready for a replacement? Multiply the system age by the total estimated repair cost. If the total exceeds the “$5,000 rule,” you should probably just replace it and begin enjoying a new, efficient air conditioner instead of dealing with another headache. Don’t keep spending your money on a bunch of little repairs—solve the problem once and for all and replace the whole unit.
Air Conditioning Repair & Installation Services
When you’re ready to improve your home life with a brand new or repaired air conditioning system, call a licensed technician at Stephens Plumbing to receive safe and efficient air conditioning repair services. We can even assist you in the process of shopping for a new air conditioning unit so you have access to a technical expert’s recommendations. Our team of certified contractors also offers plumbing and HVAC repair or installation services for furnaces, water heaters, water pipes, and boilers. We’ll be sure all your air conditioning system questions and needs are addressed during our next visit. Book an air conditioner repair, replacement, or installation appointment online or call our high-quality team directly at 630-968-0783.