Tuckers Air Conditioning, Heating & Plumbing Blog

What Is the Difference Between Freon and Puron?


The words Freon and Puron cause confusion for people who aren’t in the HVAC industry. They probably know they’re refrigerants, but that’s it. They may not know which type is in their air conditioning system and if it matters which one is in there. 

For the most part, if you’re a homeowner it isn’t essential that you know the details about refrigerant types (called blends). Handling refrigerant is a job that only professionals licensed to work with air conditioning and other refrigeration equipment can do. However, there are a few facts about refrigerant (in particular, what Freon is) that are important to know if you have an older AC. 

Below, we’ll go into the difference between Freon and Puron, as well as clear up a common misunderstanding about Freon.

Freon Is R-22 Refrigerant

Freon is a brand name trademarked by the DuPont company for a refrigerant blend used in air conditioners known as R-22. Although a brand name, “freon” is often used to refer to all refrigerants, the same way that “Kleenex,” from the brand name Kleenex, became a common term for all facial tissues. 

R-22 is a hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC) refrigerant with a long history of use in air conditioners. However, because R-22 produces ozone-depleting emissions, its production and use started to be phased out in 2004 under the Montreal Protocols. In 2010, all production of air conditioners using R-22 was halted. As of 2020, R-22 cannot be produced, nor can remaining supplies or recycled R-22 be used to fix air conditioners with refrigerant leaks.

Puron Is R-410A Refrigerant, the Replacement

Puron is a brand name trademarked by Honeywell for R-410A, the refrigerant blend created to replace R-22 during the phaseout. R-410A is a mixture of difluoromethane and pentafluoroethane, and it does not deplete the ozone. It’s also safer than R-22 (it’s non-flammable) and more energy efficient. R-22 equipment cannot use R-410A since the blends have different pressures; new air conditioning systems were designed to use R-410A as the phaseout began with R-22. Today, all residential air conditioning systems are manufactured to use R-410A, a.k.a. Puron.

What This Means for Your Air Conditioning

If your air conditioning in Frederick, MD was installed after 2010, it’s an R-410A air conditioner and you don’t have to worry about Freon. If your AC has refrigerant leaks, you’re in good shape because our technicians can easily replace the lost R-410A. Even if your AC was constructed before 2010, it may use R-410A because these units were in production before the phaseout started. You can check the information panel on the condenser of your air conditioner to see if it uses R-410A.

But if your AC is old enough that it’s an R-22 model, we cannot repair it if it leaks refrigerant. Because any R-22 unit will probably be over 15 years, we strongly recommend you have your R-22 air conditioner replaced as soon as possible—before it breaks down and forces you to replace it. Upgrading to R-410A is good all around for your current and future cooling.  

Call Tuckers Air Conditioning, Heating & Plumbing for a new AC system installation. We pledge to exceed expectations at every turn.