Results 1 to 8 of 8
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Ramseur,NC
    Posts
    10

    Hydrocarbon Refrigerants

    Would like to here opinions and any experiences on R-22 systems being retrofitted with Hydrocarbon refrigerants. It's my understanding that while they are extremely flammable, they are very efficient and environmentally friendly.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Centerville, Iowa
    Posts
    383
    The only way I would use them is with isolation, IE condensing unit outside with a hydronic loop linking it to the house or building. The pressure relief valve would be outside too in case a refrigerant to water leak developed.

    Sent from my SCH-R530U using Tapatalk
    In my neck of the woods to most people "Maintenance" equals cursing at and/or kicking something when it breaks down.

    To get the degree symbol on Windows hold down the Alt key and type 0176 on the keyboard number pad. It is also available via the character map, and on Windows 8.1 devices with a touchscreen via the on screen keyboard.

    If you are the type where the painting is more important than the frame, or you just like movies, join me in listening to the widescreen.org podcast.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Springville, NY
    Posts
    2,753
    It's flammable only in the presence of oxygen. because it is basically propane it is heavier than air and will settle in low areas. The worry is if it comes into contact with an ignition source.

    IMHO it's not very damn likely but as with anything, oddities do occur. I'd bet to say in a few years hydrocarbon refrigerants will become more mainstream here. They are already used overseas and we in the US typically follow what the Euros do. Though, it will probably be used in critical charge and large commercial/industrial situations. I doubt many manufacturers will be using it for residential cooling.
    ~~
    Nest is poo...

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Austin, TX
    Posts
    641
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xDyN_IGiP4w
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=owO1cd3NvUY
    I think hydrocarbon refrigerants are very good despite their flammability. Lithium batteries are also flammable, but has that stopped us from using them? Moreover, the oil used in refrigeration systems makes all refrigerants flammable.

    The real future for air conditioning would be water cycle. Nonflammable, very high efficiency, and zero GWP. The only problem is that the technology to use it isn't quite ready for mass production.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Winter Haven, FL
    Posts
    4,367
    Its illegal to use hydrocarbon based refrigerants in systems that use over 15 ounces of refrigerants.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    mid-Tennessee
    Posts
    742

    I did some research on this...

    ...awhile back. So, on that topic:


    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Harper View Post
    Its illegal to use hydrocarbon based refrigerants in systems that use over 15 ounces of refrigerants.

    Actually it's illegal above 150 grams - which is 5.3 oz. That limit is on the approved usage only for self-contained commercial refrigeration. Usage in domestic use is limited to 57 grams - which is 2 oz. NO hydrocarbon is approved for residential & light commercial air-conditioning...or automotive (R-1234yf).

    Here's a RSES slideshow on the topic:

    http://www.instructorworkshop.org/Ap...s_Training.pdf

    Here's at least case of an exploding refrigerator...back in 2009 in Europe:

    http://www.acr-news.com/are-our-fridges-safe

    Here's the EPA’s position on an unacceptable hydrocarbon-based replacement for R-22 in air-conditioning equipment:

    http://www.epa.gov/ozone/snap/r22a.html

    Note under paragraph 5 and check the link regarding litigation against another company for processing & distributing an unacceptable R-22 substitute – ES-22A by a company called Eco-safe. I compared the MSDSs between that and EF-22a by Ecofreeeze...and all the number match. Same LEL,UEL, ingredients and auto-ignition temperature. So Ecofreeze may join Eco-safe in that litigious line up before long.

    Here's the EPA’s proposed ruling restricting hydroncarbon refrigerant usage. See page 78833& 78834.

    http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2011...2011-32175.htm

    Here’s a list of approved substitutes for household & light commercial air-conditioning:

    http://www.epa.gov/ozone/snap/refrig...ts/homeac.html
    Last edited by ECtofix; 04-23-2014 at 10:31 PM.


    "You never know what others don't know." -

    If I can't laugh at myself...then I'll laugh at YOU! -

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    TX
    Posts
    58
    I deal with them on occasion...in industrial process areas. Its nice to have the bottoms of all your 3 way changeover valves tied to a 24 inch flare line to "recover" your refrigerant. R-1270(propylene). You can dump2000 lb in a couple of hours. But having it in a resi application? There is a reason SO2 and Ammonia are no longer used here. But like the old arkla units, a hydronic loop would be fine. I would build in a security feature to shoot flames at copper thieves!!!LOL

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Austin, TX
    Posts
    641
    Small chillers might in fact be the way it's going. The few water cycle units out there are chillers or package units simply because the very low pressures make a split system impractical.

    I also wonder if they might find some additive that can be combined with hydrocarbons to make them less flammable without detracting from its efficiency and environmental advantages.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Comfortech Show Promo Image

Related Forums

Plumbing Talks | Contractor Magazine
Forums | Electrical Construction & Maintenance (EC&M) Magazine
Comfortech365 Virtual Event