From 1 January 2010 it became illegal to use virgin HCFCs like R22 refrigerant to maintain or service air conditioning equipment. As a temporary measure re-cycled or recovered R22 can be used until 31 December 2014, but costs may become high as it gets scarcer.
From 1 January 2015 sales and use of all recycled or recovered R22 to maintain or service air conditioning equipment will be banned.
R-22 Refrigerant Phase out
R22 was, until about 2002, a commonly used refrigerant in air conditioning equipment. However it contains hydrochlorofluorocarbons, which, if released, can harm the ozone layer.
New legislation introduced under The Kyoto Protocol now places restrictions on its use.
Concerns regarding Reclaimed R-22 Refrigerant
Reclaimed R22 refrigerant also carries the risk of contamination from wherever it has been reclaimed from. Oil or moisture contamination could have a detrimental effect on any plant or equipment it is introduced to. Whilst ‘reclaimed’ gas is ‘cleaned’, prior to resale, its quality cannot be guarantee, nor can the removal of all contaminant.
In essence, from 2010 we will quickly see the demise in availability of refrigerant such as R22, inevitably causing prices to accelerate. This will have the knock-on effect of increasing the cost of maintaining existing equipment using HCFCs, up until 2015, when they will be banned entirely and any equipment using them rendered redundant.
1 January 2015 – all R22 Refrigerants will be banned
Come 2015, once the ban on R22s is in place, it is important to be aware that the end user will be the liable party in terms of its responsibility for its plant and equipment. The end user has a legal duty to ensure the safe removal and disposal of HCFCs such as R22, from any of its plant or equipment.
What are the risks of non-compliance regarding R22 Refrigerant?
- Loss of insurance cover
- Health and safety litigation
- Environmental litigation
- Business interruption
- Loss of operationally critical units
How can Franklyn Air help?
To see if you are affected and help you manage compliance with the new legislation Franklyn Air can carry out an audit of your system. If action is required we will make recommendations based on the most cost effective solution. One option is to replace equipment with modern energy efficient units.
To help with the decision we will calculate likely energy savings, financial incentives, payback period and your CO2 savings. A possible alternative is to refit or retrofit existing plant to use an alternative refrigerant. In this case we will provide expert advice regarding subsequent system efficiency and reliability.
For further information, please contact a member of the team to discuss the benefits of replacing your current air conditioning system.