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Can't replace old compressor with R22 refrigerant?

Air Handler Model FB4ANA036 Compressor Model #561AJ036-A

I was told by tech that once the compressor goes--unless it's a replaceable motor--then the air handler won't work with the newer compressors that use the new refrigerant and not R22.




  • Eugene Silberstein_2
    Eugene Silberstein_2 Member Posts: 349
    Compressor vs. Condensing Unit

    Before I begin, I just want to clarify two definitions so we are on the same page. A condensing unit is comprised of the compressor and condenser coil. The condensing unit is the entire piece of equipment that you have in you back or side yard. The compressor is one component of the condensing unit.

    If the compressor on your existing system is in need of replacement, then the compressor itself can be replaced with another R-22 compressor. If the entire condensing unit is in need of replacement, chances are the new condensing unit will be of the R-410A variety. If such is the case, you will likely need to replace the indoor unit as well. Here are some things to consider:

    If the existing indoor (evaporator) coil has been factory pressure tested to 235 psig, then you can use the existing coil.

    If the existing indoor (evaporator) coil has been factory pressure tested to 150 psig, then you CANNOT use the existing coil.

    If you are able to use the existing evaporator coil, you will still need to have the metering device replaced. The vapor heat capacities of R-22 and R-410A differ greatly and require different metering devices.

    Hope this helps and keep us posted.
  • D107
    D107 Member Posts: 1,776
    Thanks for the precise info...

    The co. was there basically there to change filter, check compressor pressure and add an EZ trap and correct some wasteline routing. (for any HOs tuning in, I'd found that the overflow line, which was supposed to be connected to the gutter or soffit, just ended above the 2nd floor ceiling, so that was removed. Now with the EZ trap--which we can easily prime--we can avoid those sporadic sewer gas odors coming through the supply registers.)

    I wish I'd printed out that long list of annual AC maintenance points--probably from you--that I have on my computer. When he checked the compressor outside he read cold side only = showed 72 while unit was running and he told me he's looking for steadiness more than a number. The last service we had, I'm embarassed to say was in 1999, and the readings were then 85 on the cold side and 225 on hot side. I recall it may have been overcharged at one point.

    Unit has generally worked fine considering it's in a hot attic; I don't know how long AC units can last. There was no cleaning of coils on either unit, or other tests done. Unit is rated 10 Seer overall; inline replacement filter was honeywell 10 MERV which I hope is adequate enough for it being the only filter. The original filter 903B was in a metal frame and was probably better.

    As for pressure testing, here's the tech info listed for the air handler: Don't know if 'psig300' indicates a pressure test.
    Motor fla 3.2, test static .35, Volts 208-230, Piston #78 1/3 hp Phase 1/60 H2
    Refrigerant R 22 PSIG 300; Sporlan Valve Co., St. Louis: WP 500 PSIG Type C163-5 407G

    Compressor info: Piston ID 70 Factory Charged R-22. 5lbs/2.27kg 208230 volts; Des test pressure HI: 450psi, 3102 kpa; Lo: 210psi, 1448 kpa

    It would be good to know if our 17yr old AC might be worth repairing if it came to that. Seems like the tech's comments were a little misleading, though with the new 25? SEER models coming out, perhaps reduced electric bills enter into when to upgrade. We're not heavy AC users though.


  • Craig R Bergman
    Craig R Bergman Member Posts: 101
    Don't forget

    the tax credits now available. You could get a 1,500.00 credit if you have the a/c replaced.

This discussion has been closed.