Old refrigerants_how long do they last?
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Tallahassee, FL
    Posts
    1
    I have several 50 lb. drums of R500 which have been setting in my warehouse for about six years. The plastic seals have been removed, but as far as I know, the valves have never been cracked.

    Is there a point at which this refrigerant becomes a poor risk?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Posts
    34
    There is no reason that any virgin refrigerant will break down or "go bad" unless they it is burnt, causing breakdown and a heck of a lung burner. If it sits in the original jug, obviously under pressure then there is very little that can happen to it.

    Maybe if it were a newer blend refrigerant the components would seperate, but it is unlikley.

    Refrigerants are not produced with a "shelf life".
    Be Careful, The Toes You Step On Today May Be Conected To The A$$ You Have To Kiss Tomorrow.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Delaware
    Posts
    350
    The refrigerant will last for decades if it is in a sealed container. I've seen many 40 year old 125 lb. cylinders with good refrigerant (R-12) in them, although the outside of the cylinders looked pretty bad. In some cases we had to clean the corrosion off the valve threads to be able to hook the cylinder up, but the gas inside was good.

    Your biggest worry is leakage from the cylinder valve, or from corrosion eating into the walls from the outside of the container causing leaks, especially at the cylinder welds. Containers without shrinks on the valve are a potential liability if you are trying to sell the material because it is possible the cylinder was refilled with crap.

    In the US, if the material does not meet ARI-700, you break the law if you sell it to a new owner. The EPA likes to publicize these violations when they catch someone.

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