What to Do With an Old Air Conditioner Once You Have It Replaced

Old Appliances

When you get a new air conditioner to replace an old or broken model, what do you do with the old one? Many HVAC companies that install air conditioners (including us!) include haul away as part of their replacement services.

But if you’re stuck with an old air conditioner for whatever reason, here’s what you can do.

What to Do With an Old AC Unit

Don’t let your old AC sit around gathering dust or growing rust. Here’s how you can get rid of it in Cincinnati and throughout Hamilton County:

Can I Throw Out an Air Conditioner?

Because of the potentially harmful refrigerant in air conditioners, you can’t just leave your AC at the curb to be taken to the landfill. The fluorocarbons and freon in refrigerants can contribute to depleting ozone and increasing the greenhouse gas effect, which means AC disposal is regulated by federal guidelines.

In Cincinnati, you can contact a qualified company for haul away or drop off. Certain junkyards will also accept old air conditioners, though it’s best to call ahead to ask if they can take your unit.

Are Air Conditioners Recyclable?

Yes, old air conditioners can be recycled! Certified technicians can remove refrigerant gases and store them. Some can even clean the gases to be used for recharging ACs with damaged refrigerant lines. After the refrigerant is removed, the rest of the machine is broken down and individual parts can be scrapped and recycled.

Functioning air conditioners can also be donated or sold, though they have to be manufactured after 2010 to be sold. Any AC units made before 2010 may contain older, more environmentally damaging R-22 refrigerants. No air conditioner with R-22 refrigerant may be sold in the US. We recommend not donating these older ACs either, to avoid keeping harmful refrigerants in use.

How to Recycle an Air Conditioner

Some recyclers will only take an air conditioner that’s already been drained of freon by an EPA-licensed technician. You can find a licensed expert at scrap yards and HVAC companies.

Other recycling centers are equipped to remove and dispose of freon. You can just schedule a pick-up or drop-off time and wash your hands of the old appliance.

Where to Recycle Air Conditioners in Springdale, Northgate, Covenant, and Beyond

You have two options for recycling your AC. You can drop off your old unit with a designated Hamilton County appliance recycler. You can also schedule a pickup from a company like HVAC Recycle that will pick up your old air conditioner from your home or business to be responsibly recycled.

Many, but not all recyclers will pick up old air conditioners for free. You may have to pay a fee, depending on the service you use.

What to Do With Old Window AC Units

Window air conditioners (and mini-splits!) can be disposed of just like central AC systems. The only difference is that smaller, portable air conditioners are easier to take to a recycling center yourself. Professional haul away may be more important for you for a large central unit than for a window AC you can fit in your trunk.

Get the Pros to Take Care of AC Replacement, Including Haul Away!

If all this sounds like a hassle, good news! One Hour Heating & Air Conditioning of Cincinnati takes care of your old AC unit when we install a new one. We’ll clean up everything after installation and responsibly dispose of your air conditioner, including the refrigerant.

When you’re ready for a new, more efficient air conditioner or heat pump, give us a call at (513) 815-3460 or book an appointment today.