The most common hydrochlorofluorocarbon or refrigerant used in HVAC-R systems is Freon or R22. Freon is energy efficient and compatible with most of the HVAC-R systems on the market. That is why it was so popular for many decades. But the experts found out that R22 isn’t as healthy for the environment as they once thought. In fact, R22 depletes the ozone layer of the planet. The ozone layer does an important job of protecting life from the harmful UV rays of the sun. R22 depletes the ozone layer and is known as an ozone-depleting substance or ODS. Hence, the leaders of the world convened at Montreal in 1987 in order to sign the Montreal Protocol – which decided to phase out ODS components from being used in the HVAC-R industry. This article provides information on 4 types of refrigerants that are safer than R22 or Freon.
R22 is being phased out in several stages. The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) in the United States decided to ban the use of R22 in new HVAC-R units from 2010. But the substance was produced in limited quantities to service the current HVAC units out there. The final stage of the phase-out will be completed in January 2020. You won’t be able to purchase Freon even to service your existing unit after January 2020. Even today, a pound of R22 is sold at an exorbitant price of $115. That is due to the limited quantity of R22 on the market. The suppliers who have stocked up the substance charges an exorbitant price for a pound of R22. Hence, you need to replace R22 with a safer alternative refrigerant such as R410A or TdX 20. These substances are environmentally friendly compared to R22 since they don’t damage the ozone layer of the planet.
Since there are millions of HVAC-R units in the country, homeowners, business owners, and HVAC technicians should find an alternative substance to replace Freon when the substance is finally banned in 2020. The more you delay to make this important shift, the more money you will lose in the process. That is why you should be making the shift from R22 to an eco-friendly refrigerant and save your hard earned money in the process. That way you will save money as well as do your part toward the environment. You will also be able to reduce your carbon footprint in the process. That is why you should be making this important shift right now.
R410A – This is one of the best alternative refrigerants on the market today. It is a blend of two hydrofluorocarbons such as pentafluoroethane and difluoromethane. It is a non-ozone-depleting substance that comes with a better energy efficiency compared to R22 or Freon because the former doesn’t have chlorine in its make up. On the other hand, it is friendly towards the environment. In fact, R410A is much more suitable for your HVAC-R system compared to R22. The better and refrigeration capacity of R410A help improve the performance of your system. Should you decide to shift from R22 to R410A, you should replace the entire unit with a unit that uses R410A. In fact, R410A won’t run on HVAC units that run on R22. That is one disadvantage of shifting from R22 to R410A. You will have to spend more money in the process since you have to replace the complete HVAC unit with a unit that is compatible with R410A. But you have no choice other than making the shift right now since R22 damages the environment.
R404A – This is another alternative refrigerant that is recommended to replace R22. The former has an Ozone Depletion Potential of 0 – which is ideal for the environment. This alternative refrigerant is ideal for HVAC-R systems that operate at temperatures between -45° C and 15° C. That is why it is mostly used in the industrial and commercial transport sectors due to its temperature range. The makeup of R404A is quite similar to R22 – but it has a better performance than the latter. On the other hand, R404A doesn’t have a rapid reaction to water and air. Hence, it is considered quite safe for many applications. The substance is odorless, non-flammable, and colorless – which are some of the many advantages of the refrigerant.
R134A – This is a haloalkane substance that has thermodynamic properties. It is made with a single component and isn’t blended as many other alternative refrigerants on the market. Hence, you don’t need multiple recovery machines when working with this alternative refrigerant. This refrigerant is considered a much better option than R22 since it doesn’t damage the ozone layer of the planet.
TdX 20 – This is one of the most viable alternative refrigerants on the market today. In fact, it improves the performance of the HVAC-R systems by increasing their energy efficiency. TdX 20 is a non-ozone-depleting substance since it doesn’t damage the ozone layer of the planet. The substance will reduce the electricity consumption of the HVAC unit by at least 5-25% – depending on what type of HVAC-R unit you are using. It reduces the load on the compressor and coil of the system and prolongs the lifespan of the system. There are many other advantages of shifting from R22 to TdX 20. In fact, TdX 20 works on almost all R22 units without any problem. That way you don’t have to spend money to replace the complete system when making the shift from R22 to TdX 20. That is why the majority of clients and HVAC-R technicians prefer to use this substance when shifting from R22 to an alternative refrigerant. It will save you a lot of time and money in the process.
R22 will be completely banned in January 2020. You should use an alternative refrigerant in your HVAC unit before Freon is phased out. There are many alternative refrigerants on the market today. The aforementioned article provides information on 4 types of refrigerants that are safer than R22.