Share This Guide
So, perhaps you ran out of the regular refrigerant that you use for home ac. And there are some leftover r1134a in the garage.
Now you are asking- can you use R134a in a home ac system?
Well, no you cannot use R134a in the ac system. Because your ac requires a high-temperature range that R134a can not provide. Also using it can lead the compressor to leak and eventually get damaged. Also, no ozone depletion can potentially lead to global warming. So, it is quite harmful.
Not sure yet? Well, do not worry! Because in this article you will get to know the answer! Also, we have listed all the reasons why you should not use it.
Why Is R134a Not Used in Home Air Conditioning?
There are not one but several reasons why you shouldn’t use R134a for home ac systems. We have listed some of them below-
Higher Discharge Side Pressures:
R134a systems usually operate at higher discharge-side pressures than usual R22. Hence it may cause the compressor seals to leak. And this is not at all good for the system of your AC.
Medium Temperature Potency:
Refrigerants are manufactured for particular temperature ranges where their effectiveness is as great as possible.
R-134A can’t be used as a replacement for the ideal home ac refrigerants like R-12.
Because R134a possesses less ozone depletion ability than the other refrigerants. It might lead to global warming.
Acknowledge that, air conditioners require a high-temperature application. But R-134A as a refrigerant usually provides you with medium-temperature refrigeration.
So, it does not operate in the exact pressure range needed for home air conditioner systems.
The Lubricant Problem:
Also, R134a has a lubricant issue. As the compressor of your AC contains many moving parts. So they require oil to properly lubricate.
And R134a refrigerant can not provide that. And this might lead to inefficiency in your air conditioner compressor.
Also, it does not cool as nicely as other refrigerants such as R22.
Non-Interchangeable and Fixed Gauges:
The refrigerant for your home air conditioning system is not interchangeable. Well for other types of air conditioning systems, it can be different.
The gauges of your home AC system are summed with certain temperatures as well as pressures.
Only that particular pressure can properly correspond to the refrigerant that you are using.
Also, R134 automotive gauges tend to be 1/2″ and are also quick to install.
On the other hand, your home AC systems utilize 1/4-inch flare fittings. So clearly they are not compatible with automotive gauges.
So, if you try to experiment by using R134a, let us warn you. You might risk harming the AC unit eventually.
What Happens if You Use R134a in Home AC Anyway?
Using R134a for your home ac system is not a good idea at all. You may cause serious damage to the AC system if you blindly start putting R134a.
There are chances that the compressor might become inefficient. It will not work as before. And also the compressor seals might leak due to the higher discharge pressure.
Also, some reported air conditioner fins crumbling due to using the wrong refrigerant.
Also, it is mentioned that R134a possesses no ozone depletion capability. And it can potentially cause global warming.
Amassing a quantity of R134a in the atmosphere is similar to about 1500 times CO2 volume.
And it is exactly the quantity of CO2 in the atmosphere which can cause global warming. So, do you realize the high global warming potential of R134a?
Because of that, the refrigerant can prove to be hazardous to the environment.
Keep in mind that it is not about replacing ac capacitor with different ratings. That would go experiment with and try out different things.
Because in your case, it may lead to serious damage to your residential air conditioning system.
So, without having an idea about the AC unit, don’t go about putting the wrong refrigerant.
You might inflict permanent damage to the entire system of the AC. Just because of your desire to experiment.
Which Home Air Conditioner System Is Compatible with R134a?
Granted that R134a is used mostly in cars. However, there is only one exception. There is just one home air conditioner that has been built to use R134a as standard.
In 2010, there was a rule. That is newly produced home air conditioners must use refrigerants that do not exhaust the ozone.
R134a is generally eco-friendly. But most of the new air conditioners created in 2010 utilize the R410a.
The reason is that R134a is way more energy efficient as well as environmentally friendly than R134a.
The Weather Maker 134A:
However, the Weather Maker 134A was the only residential air conditioner that used R134a as a refrigerant. It was in November 2010.
The Weather Maker air conditioner is built from recycled materials.
As per the Carrier Corporation, It also claims to provide worthwhile use of energy as well as reduction of noise.
Nonetheless, by 2010, other comparable home air conditioning systems were being manufactured. Those used refrigerants are even one step ahead of R134a. If we consider the green quality.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Is R134a not used in air conditioning?
R134a is not used in ac as they tend to operate at elevated discharge pressures. The R134a possesses quite a medium of pressure which is not compatible with a home air conditioner. So, using it might induce leaking in the compressor seals. Also, they can not lubricate well as needed.
What type of refrigerant does a home AC use?
Previously, most home ACs used R22 as a common refrigerant. However, due to the growing environmental concerns, it is now being replaced with R410A. Because the R410A is super environment friendly. Plus, It is really good for the system as well.
Does R134a create a lubricant issue on my home air conditioner system?
Yes, R134a does cause a lubricant issue in your ac. As the compressor of your AC contains many moving parts. So they need oil to properly lubricate. And R134a can not provide that. Also, it does not cool as nicely as other refrigerants such as R22.
Hope we’ve cleared all your queries can you use R134a in a home ac system?
Now that you know the answer you know what you should do. Of course, avoid it as much as possible! Also, think about all the harm it may cause to the environment. So, it is always better to use standard refrigerant. And not try too much experimenting.
That is all for now. Have a great day ahead!
HVAC tech with over 30 years of experience. Retired and doing repair work on the side around Madison County, AL.