New refrigerant better for the environment
By Doug McAllister
Q. I own a 2014 Jeep I took in to have the air conditioning recharged. I was blown away by how much it is going to cost to have this service done.
I was told this is some kind of new Freon, which makes it so expensive. Does that sound right?
A. Yes, you are correct. They are using a new refrigerant in many of the current model vehicles. Jeep was one of the first ones to adopt it.
The new refrigerant is called R1234YF and the reason for the switch is to protect the environment. The reason your recharge is more expensive than a recharge with the old R134A refrigerant is this new gas is 25 times the cost and special equipment is needed to install it.
In addition, it is now a longer process to recharge the system than before. These systems work just fine but be prepared to spend a little more the next time you need A/C work done on one of these cars.
Not every repair shop has invested in the new equipment yet, so you will have to check with your service provider to see if they can service your car with the new refrigerant.
• Douglas Automotive is at 417 W. Main St., Barrington; 123 Virginia Road, Crystal Lake; and 416 Northwest Hwy., Fox River Grove. For information, visit douglasautomotive.com. Send questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.