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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Reading, Pa.
    Posts
    456

    Mixing refrigerants? (let the flames begin)

    Ok guys and gals... I KNOW it ain't right or what's taught or what they say ain't comtatible (so they say) HOWEVER!

    I have come across units that have been marked by passed tech's "R-12/134A/409/hotshot.mix. And are working fine after I repaired a small leak and partially recharged with what I had on hand (134a).

    I've also used R22 instead of 404a to get a WI freezer running after fixing a leak, havn't had to go back in 6 months and used 3lbs on a 8lb system.

    The equipment,refrigerant,oil and other manufacturers adamantly proclaim that they WON'T mix but they will.

    Now before you get your panties in a bunch! I don't do this all the time as a general practice, but only in a pinch. If the system pulls down to temp. then I leave it at that.


    you can get as technical as you want but, R12,134a,409,hotshot,and a few others ALL have REALY close head pressure.. and the bottom line is protecting the compressor. R 502,404a,r22...ect are the same.


    NO they are not intercomtatible with P.O.E. oil and Mineral oil. I know this but if it's a mix then as long as the majority is oil compatible it will work. Reduce performance and life???? maybe.


    My proof I recently came across a 1 door upright freezer that was to be scrapped,marked 404a, The comp. worked so I fixed the evap. leaks and weighed in the 16 oz charge of as equal parts I could of 134a,404a,22,409a.

    and also some recovered witches brew

    Well it reached -10 F in 45 min. from 80 F.

    Hmm?

    Now let the beatings begin. (no I didn't make this up to provoke you guys...)
    We the willing, led by the unknowing, for the ungratefull, have done so much for so long with so little, we are now qualified to do anything with nothing.

    Refrigeration is all the same weather your making Ice, refrigerating or freezing the product.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    4,233
    this should be good. LOL
    Make your expertise uniquely valuable.

    Make your influence uniquely far-reaching.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Reading, Pa.
    Posts
    456
    The 1 door upright at the end of the post is my guiene pig (spelling?)

    (not a customers! In my driveway enjoying the 90+ F weather.
    We the willing, led by the unknowing, for the ungratefull, have done so much for so long with so little, we are now qualified to do anything with nothing.

    Refrigeration is all the same weather your making Ice, refrigerating or freezing the product.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    5,812

    Talking

    I love your thinking outside the box. You know this is really going to upset some people right ? Maybe you could come up with your own flavor oh that's right you already have. I do know of a W/I cooler that was R409 and switched to R134a with no oil change. Dang thing has been running like a Swiss watch for the past 5 years.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Posts
    4,188
    Quote Originally Posted by Executioner View Post
    and the bottom line is protecting the compressor. R 502,404a,r22...ect are the same.
    502 and 404a will get along fine as long as you have enough 502 to transport the oil. 22 doesn't belong there. at least not too much of it. runs high head pressure, compression ratio, and discharge temps in low temp applications. Its a quick way to a cooked compressor on a system not designed for it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Western PA
    Posts
    24,933
    I know a lot of guys who will mix the R-12 variant refrigerants (401a, hotshot, etc) and claim no problems with operation.

    I have never knowingly mixed refrigerants and never will.

    When working on larger equipment (1000+ pound charges) throwing in 200# of R-22 in an R-404a rack may work, but it may also have consequences that I don't want to consider, such as me losing my job when my company has to pay for the recovery, replacement and disposal of a half ton of junk gas that I created.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    101
    i've topped off a 404 WIF with 22 once in a pinch, but i only did cause i was working in a fly in only location and didn't have time to wait for 404. this was over six months ago and the unit is still working great.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    5,812
    If you do decide to mix refrigerants there is one tool you will not need. Do you know which one ?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    New Mexico
    Posts
    5,346
    Propane is a good emergency substitute for R12. Just don't have a leak.
    I know if you substitute the old 70's R500 with R22 it will cost you.
    Tracers work both ways.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Posts
    4,188
    Quote Originally Posted by hvacker View Post
    I know if you substitute the old 70's R500 with R22 it will cost you.
    I have a customer (church) that had an r-500 system that i topped up every year with 5 lbs r-22. worked great. Untill the compressor fell out and ripped off the suction line. Then they got a new r-22 condenser and TXV

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    New Mexico
    Posts
    5,346
    Quote Originally Posted by craig1 View Post
    I have a customer (church) that had an r-500 system that i topped up every year with 5 lbs r-22. worked great. Untill the compressor fell out and ripped off the suction line. Then they got a new r-22 condenser and TXV
    A shop in Illinois serviced a, I think, 10 ton Carrier heat pump. After three compressor failures someone read the data plate. It was a R500 machine that was serviced with R22. Some were sworn to secrecy.
    There are large operating pressure differences between the two. R-12 is a lot closer to R500 than R22.
    My guess is the compressor stroke is different as the cfm should be different for the two.
    Tracers work both ways.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    pittsburgh, pa
    Posts
    529
    Quote Originally Posted by VTP99 View Post
    If you do decide to mix refrigerants there is one tool you will not need. Do you know which one ?
    P.T. chart? As far as R500 goes, it is really close to R12 but the head pressure is higher(I think, it's been a rough 2 months, at least i think it's been 2 months, I'm really burnt out right now). Couldn't you pull out the 500, and recharge with R409a and it would be fine. We actually have R500, so if I had something that old, I could put the right juice in it.(The R500 is buried along with the R11).

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Oklahoma City
    Posts
    168
    I have always wondered about that. Boss wanted me to carry hotshot but not 134 so I was alway recovering the charge and recharging with hotshot. I finally started carrying 134. Life is now easier.

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