This post will go over AC freon leak repair cost and what’s involved in such a repair. There are a few variables that come into play when considering the cost of an A/C freon repair.
What type of refrigerant is involved?
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In order to determine how much a freon leak repair will cost you will need to know what type of refrigerant (FREON) your system is using. The easiest way to find this information is to look at the outside condenser and find the manufacturer’s sticker. The sticker will show R-22 or R-410A and in rare circumstances, it may show another type of refrigerant.
From the example below you can see the sticker says R410A. This would be the sticker on the condenser. Various brands have stickers in different places. Locate the sticker on your unit and look at it carefully to determine the type of refrigerant you have.
The picture below shows you an example of a unit with R22 refrigerant. This would be the sticker on the condenser. Various brands have stickers in different places. Locate the sticker on your unit and look at it carefully to determine the type of refrigerant you have.
If your system has R-22 refrigerant it will cost you a lot more money. Some states won’t even put in R22 refrigerant because of local laws.
The cost of R22 refrigerant is very expensive if it can be found at all. Some contractors will offer a conversion kit so another refrigerant can be installed. The A/C freon leak repair cost will be much higher if the refrigerant is R22 just because of the cost of the refrigerant alone.
Is the refrigerant leak in the evaporator coil?
If the contractor tells you the Freon leak is in the evaporator coil the cost to repair that will depend on the exact location. If the leak is in an area that can be repaired without removing the coil then you are looking at about $950 – $1900 dollars.
If the evaporator coil needs to be removed then the repair will involve a lot more work and the A/C freon leak repair cost will be between $1550 – $2900. Keep in mind this pricing doesn’t include any pricing for the refrigerant. This is just for all the labor of removal and fixing the leak.
Is the leak in the condenser coil?
If the leak is in the condenser coil the A/C freon leak repair cost will typically be less than the evaporator coil. The reason it will be less to repair a leak in the condenser coil is that it’s so much easier of a location to find and patch the leak.
Is the freon leak in the main copper refrigerant lines?
If the leak is in the main copper lines you would think it would be more expensive however, it most likely will be much less expensive. If a leak is in the main copper refrigerant lines typically the process is much easier and less labor-intensive than if the freon leak is in the coil.
In many cases, the copper line just needs to be cut and a fitting can be put in its place and brazed back on. I have been to a lot of customers’ houses and they think it’s going to be more expensive because it’s a large copper line. If I wasn’t in the business I would think the same thing.
What makes some freon leak repair cost more expensive?
The reason it’s more expensive to fix a leak in the evaporator or condenser coil is that a lot of times the whole coil needs to be disassembled. It’s also much more difficult to patch these aluminum coils and guarantee the work. The fact that it’s so hard to determine if the repair will even work or if another leak may occur makes condenser coil repairs risky for any contractor.
Another reason some A/C freon leak repair costs are more is simply because of the location the technician needs to work in. I have worked on evaporator coils in 150-degree attics and when I was done I swore there wasn’t enough money in the world to get me to do another one. Especially if the evaporator coil is in a small difficult area of the home attic. The job becomes extremely difficult and time-consuming because of the location.
Why do various contractors have different prices?
The reason some contractors charge more than other contractors may be because of multiple reasons.
If you are dealing with a company that’s been in business for less than 5 years the simple answer may be they just haven’t figured out how to correctly charge. Let me explain what I mean by this. Some companies that haven’t been in business a long time haven’t figured out when they are actually losing money on some jobs. For this reason, they think they can charge less than large companies and still make money.
The problem is sooner or later they will find out that with warranties on the parts and the labor, they lose money over the warranty period of that original repair.
Companies that have been in business for 10 or more years have typically figured out what they need to charge to fulfill those warranties and still stay in business. Unfortunately, small businesses that don’t price themselves correctly from the start may end up going out of business.
While the larger company that has been in business for a while may cost you more in the short term they quite often cost way less in the long run. Something else to consider is the larger more expensive companies have a larger staff to help you in case of an emergency.
If the leak is in an area that can be repaired without removing the coil then you are looking at about $950 – $1900 dollars.
If the evaporator coil needs to be removed then the repair will involve a lot more work and the A/C freon leak repair cost will be between $1550 – $2900.
If the leak is on the large refrigerant lines the cost may only be between $500-$900 dollars.
I hope this article helped shed some light on this type of repair. If you have a specific question please ask me in the comments section.