Is it Necessary?
Your AC doesn’t just cool the air by magic. There’s a fuel in the unit called refrigerant (or coolant) that is pressurized and moves throughout a closed system. Without it, you’d be blasting your home with warm air.
But you’ll sometimes see suggestions about refilling or recharging your refrigerant in order to fix a lack of cool air. However, this isn’t a viable option.
How Refrigerant Works
Refrigerant is a chemical that sits in your AC unit. It is the main ingredient that absorbs heat and transforms it into cool air. The coils inside the AC system contain the refrigerant in a closed system. That means the refrigerant stays inside the coils and doesn’t leave unless there’s a leak.
As warm air enters the coils, it is absorbed by the refrigerant and transferred over the coils. Then, the blower sends the air out through the vents, cooling your home.
Why You Don’t Need a Recharge
If you’re looking to add more refrigerant, it’s likely because your AC is not blowing cool air. It may seem like a simple solution, but it likely won’t solve your problem. Even if it does, it won’t last.
If all works properly, you should never need to refill your AC’s refrigerant.
Yes, it’s true! Many people confuse the refrigerant with fuel as you’d use in your car that needs to be refilled periodically. Since the refrigerant is in a closed system, it will never need a recharge unless there’s a leak.
If your AC isn’t blowing cool air, call in a local HVAC technician to diagnose the problem. If there is a leak, they will plug the leak and then add refrigerant to bring the system back to normal.