Freon Leak In House

Freon leaks are not common, but when they happen, they negatively affect the environment and your health. Moreover, if you own an old fridge, AC, or any other appliance that utilizes Freon, you need to learn how to keep yourself and your family safe in case of a Freon leak in your house.

Several reasons can lead to having Freon leaks. This affects appliance performance and leads to serious health problems if exposed to it. Remember that you shouldn’t top or refill the refrigerant in your appliance because it never runs dry.

What is Freon?

It’s a trademarked name of the Chemours Company, the parent brand of Dupont. The name boasts several refrigerant chemical gases in cooling appliances, including freezers and air conditioning units. R-22 refrigerant is the most common variety of Freon. Moreover, Freon is also used as a propellant in aerosol cans. R-22 refrigerant entails chlorofluorocarbon gas, commonly utilized from the 1930s to the late 1980s. In this era, the authority noted that this gas was harmful to the environment and contributed to ozone layer depletion.

air conditioning system

From then, appliance manufacturers are urged to substitute Freon with a more environmentally friendly gas which is R-410A refrigerant. Most appliances manufactured after 2005 are unlikely to have Freon, and those made after 2010 aren’t allowed by law to have Freon.

Do You Know Which Appliances Use Freon?

Freon is a type of refrigerant that is used in a variety of appliances, including air conditioners, refrigerators, and freezers. Freon is also used in some food processors.

Freon is known for its ability to cool and dehumidify air, making it an ideal choice for use in appliances that need to maintain a consistent temperature.

Signs That Your Appliance Is Leaking Out Freon

ac refrigerant leak

Understanding signs that your home appliance system is leaking out Freon is significant to protect your loved ones, yourself, and the environment. Freon is tasteless and scentless; hence you will need other signs to know when Freon is leaking. Below are ways to tell when an appliance is leaking out this poisonous gas and the measures you need to take.

1.   Higher Electric Bills

When an appliance system leaks its refrigerant, it is forced to work harder to accomplish its cooling task. Consequently, your system will utilize more energy, resulting in higher energy bills.

2.   AC Blowing Warm Air

When an appliance leaks out Freon, you’ll notice that your room will take longer to cool down. The air conditioner will also blow warm air via the registers.

ac refrigerant leaks

3.   Less Air Flow

When an appliance system has low refrigerant, it will not produce more cool air as it’s supposed to.

4.   Ice Build-Up on Evaporator Coil or at the Copper Lines

When an appliance system lacks the refrigerant for cooling, the evaporator coils or the copper lines absorb more heat. Consequently, condensation will build up, causing the coils or lines to freeze.

5.   Hissing Sound

When you suspect a Freon leak at your home, you can stand near the appliance and listen if there is a hissing noise. If it’s there, that’s a sure sign of a leak. However, when doing this, you shouldn’t get very close to the appliance because coming into contact with concentrated Freon leads to chemical burns on your skin or frostbite. Freon leaks can also lead to rashes for those with sensitive skin. Unfortunately, for you to hear the hissing sound in most people, the leak has to be fast and heavy.

Health Problems Linked with Freon Leaks

Most of the symptoms linked with Freon leakage are mild. Unfortunately, pets and children are more likely to suffer from severe symptoms since Freon gas is heavier than air. Thus, it will be in higher concentration close to ground level, where kids and pets will breathe.

If you get any of the signs, then it’s more likely that your appliance is leaking Freon or any other refrigerant gas. However, these are primary signs of the Freon effect, which can be more severe with prolonged exposure. They are:

  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Vomiting
  • Throat, ear, and nose irritation
  • Headache
  • Coughing
  • Chemical burn
  • Frostbite
shortness of breath

Treatment of Freon Poisoning

health issues

The first thing to do when you suspect a person is experiencing Freon or any other refrigerant poisoning is to take them directly to an emergency room. Although there is no specific medication for treating Freon poisoning efficiently, the medical team will help the patient with an oxygen supply and examine if there is any internal damage. In other cases, the liquid can build up to the point where your organs need removal for the affected person to recover.

Common Causes of Freon Leak

As said earlier, the refrigerant will never run dry. Therefore, there is no genuine reason for any refrigerant level to be low. When this happens, it’s more likely because of some of the reasons below.

  • Metal corrosion within your appliance
  • Inappropriate installation of an AC
  • Flaws of components from the manufacturer or physical damage

Freon Leak Prevention

It’s very simple to access Freon in appliances, and some people want to use the gas to get high. To stop this from happening, you must safeguard all your cooling appliances and lock away any spare refrigerants you may have.

Unfortunately, there’s no legal way of preventing accidental Freon leaks. But the best action is to be vigilant and check your appliances regularly for any signs of leakage.

Actions Required When There is a Refrigerant Leak

When you suspect any type of refrigerant leak, you should immediately address the issue with a professional HVAC technician. The kind of repair your appliance will need depends on different factors. At other times, only a simple repair process is required. However, it’s wise to purchase another appliance.


Can a Freon leak make you sick?

A Freon leakage can potentially make you sick if you are exposed to it for a prolonged period of time. When it leaks, it can be harmful to your health if you inhale it.

Symptoms of freon exposure include headaches, dizziness, and nausea. If you think you have been exposed to a leak, you should see a doctor immediately.

What does a Freon leak smell like?

When it occurs, the chemicals that make up the refrigerant are released into the air. These chemicals have a strong, unpleasant odor that can be detected easily.

The smell of is often described as similar to that of nail polish remover or gasoline.

If you suspect there is a Freon drain in your home or office, it is important to evacuate the area immediately and call a professional to resolve the issue.

How much does a Freon leak cost to fix?

The cost of fixing a Freon can vary depending on the severity of the leak and the amount of freon that needs to be replaced. Generally, fixing a will cost between $100 and $200.


Freon is dangerous to humans and the environment, so you need to be very careful to notice the leak. Knowing the common signs of a Freon leak is very significant as it will help you detect it early and protect yourself and your family from the dangerous effects of getting into contact with the gas. If there is an affected person, you should take them to an emergency room immediately to receive medical attention.

You can contact a skilled heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) technician to make the necessary repair.

About the author

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Brad Smith

Hello there, I am Brad “Omni” Smith, the proud founder and chief editor here at
So, while they say, „Home is Where the Heart Is“, we believe that home is where every story begins. If you’re passionate about the nest that you call home, join us at Omni Home Ideas.

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