Normally, freon takes a 15 to 30 minutes to settle in an air conditioner. But as a good rule of thumb it is better to wait for the maximum time to make sure “just in case.”
Is freon the same as a refrigerant?
Relatively speaking, the two are the same, but their names do not necessarily refer to the same thing.
Freon is a very common refrigerant, which can be used for both indoor and outdoor air conditioning systems. There are other non-reactive refrigerants, but they’re generally not used for AC systems due to their high price.
Freon is relatively inexpensive and easy to obtain.
“Freon was given the CFC name in an effort to indicate a related chemical when the liquid became a gas. When something is a gas, that means it’s lighter than a gas, and you pull more gas out of the air when you remove the air,” said Steve Dalleck, VP of sales and marketing for Air Conditioner Heating, Cooling, and Refrigeration.
Why is it important to wait for freon to settle before turning your air conditioner on?
Your air conditioner’s compressor works by drawing in air and compressing it. In the cooling process, the air is very close to room temperature.
You must then cool the air inside the compressor so the freon can move into it. If the air is not cooler, the compressor will have to work harder, and this will take longer.
When air conditions inside an air conditioner are not ideal, your air conditioner is operating at a higher than optimum efficiency. Your air conditioner may not have as much freon left in it, and this can also impact how well it is working.
Freon is an ingredient in the refrigerant that keeps your air conditioner operating well. If your air conditioner is not working correctly, the compressor is working harder to get the same amount of air into the AC unit.
What happens if you turn on the air conditioner on its side?
The cooling and refrigerant leave the compressor as equal parts. Then, when the compressor turns on its side, it tends to stick to the side of the casing. However, don’t be alarmed.
In fact, the Freon will settle into a cavity inside the air conditioner that will allow the compressor to turn on its side.
When does the freon seep into the ice box?
If the refrigerant ends up stuck to the side of the air conditioner, it will leak through and the air conditioner will not work.
The process is more difficult than just cracking open the refrigerant line and flowing it through. First, you must thoroughly clean the inner compressor. Then, you must drain the Freon from the compressor, which is a messy process.