R134a refrigerant is commonly used in various cooling and air conditioning applications. It was originally developed to replace R12 in car AC systems. It has also been used to replace refrigerants R12 and R500 in coolers. It is also used as medium temperature systems in residential buildings and commercial contexts.
R134a refrigerant is suitable for
- medium and high temperature cooling
- air conditioning in residential buildings
- light air conditioning
- vehicle air conditioning and industrial applications, such as centrifugal coolers.
R134a is also a common element in many HFC refrigerant mixtures, and it is also used in applications that require a propellant.
Refrigerant R134a applications and use
In water and liquid cooling solutions and heat pumps, the refrigerants can be used in accordance with the F-gas Regulation until 1 January 2030.
In commercial and professional refrigeration equipment, use is permitted on the primary side of cascade systems. – Power exceeding 40 kW as of 2022.
Refrigerated/frozen transport, use permitted in accordance with the F-gas Regulation until 1 January 2030.
Replacement refrigerants for R134a
Refrigerant R134a price
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R134a and R410A were originally introduced as possible replacements for CFC-based refrigerants. CFCs are more harmful to the environment.
Although both of these HFC refrigerants are more ecological than their earlier counterparts (R22, R12, R500, etc.). They are quite different in terms of their properties.
R134a is a pure refrigerant, which is also used in mixtures. R410A, in turn, is a mixture. The boiling points of these substances also differ to a great extent. The boiling points for R134a and R410A are -14.9°C and -61.9°C, respectively. In room temperature, the pressure of R134a is 70 psi and the pressure of R410A is 200 psi. They are naturally used in different types of systems and for different purposes.
Moreover, replacement is often not without its problems. For example, when substituting R22 with R134a, there are numerous problems that prevent direct replacement; The cooling power of R134a is 60% lower than that of R22, which means that the system’s condenser must work overtime to achieve the same amount of cooling. R134a is bad for rubber parts, which causes leaks. With R134a, the circulation system requires a dryer, since the refrigerant can absorb water. R134a also corrodes copper, so the system must contain an additive to prevent this. R134a systems require special lubrication oils, which are less effective across the board than those used in R22 systems.
Substitutive refrigerants are naturally being developed all the time. The above example is tough a good indication of the things that can come up when one substance is replaced with another. The substitutive refrigerants are naturally not always the most affordable, and the system modifications also involve costs.
Read also article: Air conditions dos and don’ts: Refrigerants and the law