Since it has been decided that the most common hydrochlorofluorocarbon refrigerant R-22, which has been in use for many decades, is harmful to the environment, the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) has worked hard on phasing this refrigerant out, with a plan for an eventual total ban by the year 2030.

The phase-out of R-22 started in 2010, and a further phase out occurred in 2015. By the year 2020, the use of this refrigerant will be limited severely and by the year 2030, it will become completely illegal. As more and more consumers work on ensuring their equipment and machinery that is refrigerant based will continue to work in industrial, residential and business worksites, they have been in search of cost-effective, efficient and environmentally-friendly Freon alternatives. To assist consumers that are ready to phase out R-22, here is a list of the replacements that are regarded as a better r22 coolant replacement from Blueon.

1. R-134A

This is a haloalkane refrigerant that features thermodynamic properties. This refrigerant is known as Norflurane which is commonly known as R-134A. Made from one component and not blended like many of the R-22 and R-12 alternatives. Due to this, working with this refrigerant will not require using multiple-recovery machines. The EPA regulations state that any product that recycles or uses a blend will need separate tools for every component.

To date, R-134 is at this stage the only alternative refrigerant that is approved to retrofit the R-12 air-conditioning systems found in vehicles. Yet retrofitting must always follow the correct procedures to prevent safety hazards or any other issues.

R-134A is regarded as a better alternative when it comes to the environment as some experts suggest that the effects to the ozone-layer are insignificant or extremely minimal. Individual companies are claiming that this product has an Ozone Depletion Potential of 0. Some countries are not convinced and have started to phase this refrigerant out. However, it is still one of the refrigerants available in the US and can even be purchased in most auto shops or automotive departments of many of the big-box stores.

2. R-407C

Due to its thermodynamic properties which correspond closely to what is available in R-22, R-407C has become a common type of replacement refrigerant for consumers who are looking for a way to retrofit R-22 equipment.

This blend of hydrofluorocarbons includes difluoromethane, pentafluoroethane and 1,1,1,2-tetrafluoroethane. This is one of the alternative refrigerants that is widely accepted and accessible for use in ductless split-systems, water chillers and packaged air-conditioners along with indirect expansion and light air conditioning systems located in industrial, commercial and residential properties. R-407 is an alternative refrigerant that works in the medium-temperature systems.

R-407C is utilised in a lot of the appliances that are newly manufactured. The equipment which uses nitrogen as the holding charge is highly compatible with R-407C due to the polyol-ester oil. While this refrigerant is more common in the new refrigeration systems and appliances, R-407C can be retrofitted in specific R-22 systems provided these procedures involve changing the oil.

This is one of the alternatives to Freon which is regarded as safer for the environment in association to its Ozone Depletion Potential of 0. It comes in drums and cylinders and is available through reputable refrigerant and gas suppliers.

3. R-404A
One of the other acceptable alternatives to R-22, which has become widely accepted is R-404A, which also has an Ozone Depletion Potential of zero. This is the type of refrigerant that is commonly used in refrigeration systems which require temperatures that range between -45° C and 15° C. It is widely used in industrial and commercial transport industries about its extended temperature range.
The make-up of the refrigerant is also similar to R-22 and in some cases provides improved performance. Because R-404A does not react rapidly to water or oil, it has been classified as safe for a variety of uses. It is also odourless, colourless and non-flammable.

However, similar to any other type of refrigerant, technicians should practice the necessary safety precautions. Making direct contact with this refrigerant can result in frostbite, and direct exposure to high-heat or fire can also lead in a tank that ruptures. R-404A is regarded as relatively common and can be purchased in most stores which specialise in cooling and heating products.

4. R-410A
R-410A is made up of a mixture of 2 hydrofluorocarbon refrigerants, which includes pentafluoroethane and difluoromethane. Regarded as a non-ozone depleting refrigerant, it offers an energy efficiency that is even better than R-407C and R-22 and features no chlorine in the makeup.

R-410A is regarded as one of the most suitable replacements to R-22 in association with a higher refrigeration capacity and increased pressure which results in a far better performance. For consumers that make the decision to buy the units which use R-410A, these processes are relatively straightforward. Today there are a host of companies that already manufacture refrigeration and air conditioning equipment that make groups that specifically use this refrigerant.

While R-410A is more popular in the commercial air conditioning, chilling and industrial refrigeration units, this is the alternative to Freon which is not compatible in the R-22 air conditioning units. This has to do with higher pressure, and it requires different pressure-gauges that are different compared to the type that is commonly used with R22.

R-410A is available for sale under some different trademarks which include Puron, EcoFluor R410, Forane 410A, Genetron R410A, AZ-20 and Suva 410A. This product is available through online stores and from speciality cooling and heating stores.

Choosing The Right Alternatives To Freon

It may seem like you still have a long time to make a decision on what refrigerant you should be used to either replace or retrofit your R-22 equipment and appliances. Yet the price for R-22 will continue to increase and it will soon become difficult to buy or find due to a decrease in production, it is a better idea to replace or retrofit your equipment sooner than later.