News

R-22 Phaseout

October 1st, 2009

According to various tests issued and overseen by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), HCFC-22 (also called R-22) is considered to be an ozone-depleting substance.   While other current and future tests may conclude R-22 to be safe for the environment, since the mid 90’s, the EPA has produced an international effort to regulate and phase out the production and use of all ozone-depleting refrigerants, which includes R-22. As a result of the EPA’s regulation and phase out of R-22, the HVAC industry has generally accepted the use of R-410A as a replacement for R-22.


R-22 Phaseout Dates

October 1st, 2009

January 1, 2010

Ban on production and import of HCFC-22 (R-22) except for continuing servicing needs of existing equipment.

 

January 1, 2015

Ban on sale and use of all HCFCs except for certain uses, including continuing servicing needs of refrigeration equipment.

 

January 1, 2020

Ban on remaining production and import of HCFC-22 (R-22).

 

After 2020

The servicing of systems with R-22 will rely on recycled or stockpiled quantities.

 

R-410A Pros and Cons

October 1st, 2009

R-410A is a blend of various refrigerants and, for now, is considered by the EPA to be a non-ozone-depleting refrigerant. While R-410A was invented and patented by Allied Signal (now Honeywell) and Honeywell continues to be the leader in 410A capacity and sales, other producers around the world have been licensed to manufacture and sell the product.

Pros:

  • R-410A is considered to be safe for the environment.
  • Currently, R-410A is available to purchase at prices comparable to R-22.
  • R-410A is relatively safe to store, use, and transport when handled by properly trained technicians.

 

Cons:

  • Used at much higher operating pressures than R-22.
  • Because R-410A is a blend of refrigerants it cannot be recycled (unlike R-22, which can be recycled and reused numerous times).
  • R-410A designed systems require thicker walled tubing, and compressors capable of withstanding the higher pressures of R-410A.
  • R-410A’s polyolester (POE) oil is more susceptible to moisture which can produce acid buildup within the refrigerant circuit.

 

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