What Color is Freon When it Leaks from the Air Conditioner?

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Your air conditioner is your best friend during the hottest of days because you want to make sure that you keep your room or your home cool enough especially when the summer gets a bit too warm.

Key Takeaways
  • Freon is clear, colorless, and odorless. It is tricky to tell if freon apart from other clear and colorless liquids.
  • With air conditioners, freon can be mixed with a kind of oil that has a recognizable green tint.

That said, your air conditioner can sometimes hit its limit to the point that it will begin to leak freon whenever it can no longer function at its best. But how would you even know if it is leaking freon or just extra moisture?

What color is freon? 

Freon is actually clear, colorless, and odorless. This makes it difficult to tell freon apart from other types of clear and colorless liquids. However, when used with air conditioners, they are usually mixed with a kind of oil that has a recognizable green tint. This will allow you to tell that freon is leaking.

It is never understated how important it is to make sure that your air conditioner is properly working. That’s because a leaking AC can lead to more problems not only in relation to the air conditioner itself but also to how you might not be able to have the best kind of summer due to the heat. As such, it is best that you know how to detect freon when it is starting to leak from your air conditioner so that you can remedy the situation.

What is Freon?

One of the things that you may have heard of in the past while talking about your air conditioner with a repairman is freon. The repairman might have told you that there was a freon leak in your AC or you may have heard that word from another source. But what exactly is freon?

For starters, freon is a non-combustible gas that is often used as a refrigerant for a lot of different household appliances such as your refrigerator and, yes, your air conditioner. What happens here is that freon is evaporated over time so that it can help your AC produce cool air that circulates all over the entire appliance.

As such, freon is important in your air conditioner because of how it allows the AC to circulate cool air throughout the entire room. But, over time, the freon in your AC will begin to deteriorate or drop in terms of its levels. And this is the most probable case when freon starts leaking from your AC.

What Color Is Freon When It Leaks From Your Air Conditioner?

Now that you know what freon is and how important it is to your air conditioner, you are probably wondering how a certain type of gas can end up leaking if it is actually a gas. So, the first thing that you need to know is that, when freon circulates all over your AC. For one, the cooling coils that it passes through allows the gas to cool down and transform into a liquid state.

As such, when we say that freon is leaking from your air conditioner, we are referring to the liquid form of freon and not its gaseous state. And the problem when it comes to freon that is leaking is that it can actually affect the way your AC performs due to the very fact that freon is what is responsible for helping the air conditioner produce cool air. 

So, how would you tell if the liquid that is dripping is simply water caused by the process of condensation or if it is actually freon? Does freon have a specific color that will allow you to tell it apart from all of the other liquids?

Plain freon in its liquid state actually doesn’t have any color. Liquid freon is clear, colorless, and odorless. That means that, if you only look at plain freon, it will be very difficult to distinguish it from water because of how the two liquids have the same appearance.

When freon is used as a refrigerant in refrigerators and air conditioners, it is most likely mixed with a type of refrigerator oil that is also found in the AC. As such, when freon starts to leak out, you will be able to tell it apart from water because of how it comes with a greenish tint that is due to the oil it is mixed with.

When freon leaks into a living space, you will be able to tell that it is leaking precisely because of how the area might smell of oil.

What Are The Signs That Your Air Conditioner Is Leaking Freon?

What are the other signs that you need to look at to know that your air conditioner is leaking freon? Here are a few of them:

The AC is no longer as cool as it once was

It is normal for an air conditioner to lost cooling power over time. But when you notice a quick and sudden drop in its cooling power, it could be a sign that there is a freon leak or it could just simply be too dusty. Either way, it is best to have your AC inspected for dirt or freon leak.

The vents are not blowing cool air

Even if you have your AC at the coolest settings possible, you will know that there is a freon leak if it is blowing air out of the vents but the air isn’t cool and is somewhere just close to room temperature.

There are hissing sounds

When there is a freon leak in an air conditioner, there should be a crack or a hole that is actually the cause of the leak. As such, you may be able to hear hissing sounds coming from the AC if there is a freon leak.

The coils are always frozen

The purpose of the refrigerant (such as freon) when it comes to your AC is that it circulates through the coils and will allow the coils to absorb heat. But when the coils are always frozen, that means that the freon levels are getting too low to the point that the coils are not getting enough of it to absorb heat. This can be the case when there is a freon leak in your air conditioner.