If you’re upgrading to a new AC or heat pump, HVAC recycling gives you a convenient way to get rid of your old unit with minimal impact on the environment. On the downside, you won’t get any benefit from the valuable metals inside.

Pros of HVAC Recycling: Easier and More Eco-Friendly

To get rid of your old HVAC unit, you could ask a contractor to remove the refrigerant, then disassemble the unit and take the components to a hazardous-waste disposal site. That will cost you a fee, though, and removing refrigerant without a Refrigerant Handling License is illegal.

This usually isn’t necessary because most contractors handle removal and recycling for you as part of installing a new system. HVAC recycling allows the valuable materials in your air conditioner — including copper, aluminum, and brass — to be used again instead of ending up in a landfill.

Donating to charity is another option if your unit still runs; was made before Jan. 1, 2010; and doesn’t use R-22 refrigerant. Even if only some parts work, they can still help someone. Functional motors, coils, compressors, copper tubing, and brass fittings can all be reused. 

Cons of HVAC Recycling: Less Financial Benefit

The only real downside to recycling your unit is that you’ll miss out on any cash you could get for it. If it’s still in good condition and not particularly old, you might be able to use it as a trade-in when you buy your new system. 

Selling the whole unit or individual parts to someone looking to upgrade or repair their even-older system is another possibility. If your system is too old or damaged for that, you can still sell it for scrap after you have a professional remove the refrigerant. Not all scrap-metal dealers buy whole air conditioners, so you might need to invest time and effort in taking the system apart, but you can also earn more this way.

For help finding the right HVAC recycling or disposal option for your system, contact us at Mowery Heating, Cooling and Plumbing anywhere in the Indianapolis area.

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