Aircon Gas Leaks – Signs, Causes, and Dangers

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Do you know the signs of an aircon gas leak? You’re not alone if you don’t. But it’s worth knowing because a gas leak can be dangerous and cause serious health issues. Read on to find out more!

Aircon Gas Leak – What is it?

Air conditioners cool our living spaces through the use of R22 or chlorofluorocarbons. These are dangerous and potent chemicals, requiring their handling and disposal to be given a lot of care.

When gas leaks from your system, it will cause it to function improperly, even if you set the thermostat to a lower temperature. An AC technician will find it difficult to inspect the inside of the unit, as often there is nothing wrong with the parts inside as far as can be judged from the outside.

Many reasons can cause the coolants to leak and lead to your aircon losing its ability to cool.

Let us examine your problem of air conditioner gas leaks in more detail.

Do gas leaks lead to a smell?

If the smell from your aircon is like chloroform or sweet, then it is a gas leak. This can be toxic. If you suspect a gas leak, you should contact professionals. These people have detectors that can tell you if the gas is leaking and then take care of it as required.

What happens when gas leaks from an aircon?

Leaking air coolants will turn the coolant into gas. This gas can cause nausea, difficulty in breathing and is lethal. A gas leak can also irritate the skin and cause it to become dry. Your pulse rate can increase. Repeated exposure to the gas can lead to life-threatening medical conditions.

What causes air-con gas leaks?

1. Corrosion

Water can have fluorides that can cause pitting corrosion, as can chlorides that are present in chemicals and detergents. The ions in the chlorides and fluorides will attack the coil, and this corrosion will lead to leaks of the gas refrigerant.

Cleaning solvents have formic and acetic acids that can cause formicary corrosion of the coil.

2. Mechanical harm to lines carrying refrigerants

Your air conditioner has a cooling effect when the refrigerant gas moves between the two coils, the outdoor condenser coil and the indoor evaporator coil. Most of these coils are made of copper. They are required to move the refrigerant between the evaporator and condenser. If these lines get damaged mechanically in any way, it could result in an aircon gas leak.

3. Schrader Valve Malfunction

Damage to the seal in the Schrader valve can lead to the occurrence of an AC gas leak and other issues with the refrigerant gas. You require a professional to pinpoint the issue.

4. Leaky connections in control valves

At times, the main culprits are the leaky lines that are around the control valves. Clean the valves properly and see that they are correctly attached so that you avoid this leaking problem.

5. Poor soldering of control fittings

In the aircon industry, soldering can cause issues. Cold joints get formed when the solder is not properly heated, which can lead to aircon leaks. Like a joint that is disturbed, any overheated joint can also lead to a joint that is wrongly fixed. This will result in gas leaks from the air conditioning unit.

The dangers from aircon leaks

An aircon gas leak can affect the health of the machine and all living beings on earth. Leaks can be devastating in many ways. The dangers and health hazards of such leaks can lead to:

Harm to human health

When gas leaks from an air conditioner, it can result in a health hazard to humans. The leaks for aircon can cause headaches and nausea. CFCs take in heat very quickly, and if you are exposed to pressurized CFC for a long time, it can result in frostbite.

Short-term exposure to the gas can lead to skin cracking, tremors, convulsions, reduced coordination, increased heart rates, and other problems. Exposure to this gas can lead to severe medical conditions, like shortness of breath, unconsciousness, cataracts, skin cancer, etc. You will also feel you are not able to breathe.

Damage to your air conditioner

Electricity bills can rise by significant amounts when aircon leaks are the primary culprit. Various studies have suggested that this can result in a consumption of twenty per cent more electricity. A leaking aircon can also cause added pressure on the compressor and eventually leading to its complete breakdown.

Repairing an aircon leak can be quite cheap compared to the high cost of replacing a compressor. That is why you need to deal with a leaking aircon as soon as possible. Leaks can be a danger to many life forms. The main problem is coolant leaking from the air conditioner. All these coolants are chlorofluorocarbons.

CFCs need to be disposed of off correctly, as they evaporate into gas very quickly. Our earth then absorbs them. Thus the leak in the aircon can harm plants, animals, humans, and microorganisms. As all of them depend on the water, this harm can be both direct and indirect.

Can AC leaks be fatal?

Freon is both toxic and lethal. That is the reason why leaks of this refrigerant are best handled by air conditioner repair technicians who are professionals. Death can result from the inhalation of Freon.

How to fix air conditioner gas leaks

It is best to get in the professional experts in air conditioning when you need to fix gas leaks. Many different scenarios can cause leaks, and finding the right one requires a professional’s expertise. You also need to know that repairs to an air conditioner, piping of heat pumps, tubing, cooling, and evaporator coils require removing all refrigerants from the system.

A technician asked to carry out such repairs will use a pump attached to a vacuum system to remove all moisture, air, debris, and gas. This requires the use of an evacuator pump.

Conclusion

Your family can be in serious danger if you smell gas from a leaking aircon. Call in your air conditioning professional immediately to repair the leak and ensure the safety of your family and everyone in the house. The safe running of an air conditioner requires you to maintain it regularly, and here is where contacting qualified specialists like us for any needed repairs can be your best bet.

Related read: 9 Most Popular Air Conditioner Problems & How To Deal With Them

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