Transcript of "UL Executive Summary - Revisiting Flammable Refrigerants in HVAC Equipment and Appliances"
Executive Summary:Revisiting FlammableRefrigerants in HVACEquipment and Appliances
Executive Summary:Revisiting Flammable Refrigerantsin HVAC Equipment and AppliancesSince the 1989 Montreal Protocol and its successor agreements, the world of refrigerants has been marked bychange. In the search for more environmentally-preferable refrigerants, technology has moved from chlorofluo-rocarbons to a host of alternative substances. Many of these substances are serving as interim measures, until thephase-out of ozone-depleting and global-warming refrigerants meets the targets set by the U.S. Clean Air Act.In response, HVAC equipment and (SNAP). EPA SNAP affects the selectionappliance manufacturers are exploring and use of alternative refrigerants inthe potential use of a wide range of HVAC equipment and appliances. Insubstances that have good environmental 2010 the EPA proposed that hydrocarbonand thermodynamic properties as refrigerants be accepted in refrigeratingrefrigerants. Unfortunately some of the appliances provided that they metmore environmentally attractive options the requirements of specific productare also flammable. Selecting alternative safety standards. In addition, theyrefrigerants has increasingly become proposed rules regarding identificationa complicating factor in equipment and servicing of flammable refrigerantdesign, construction, installation and containing appliances. When adopted,use. The more widespread use of pure the rules will facilitate the use ofhydrocarbon (HC) refrigerants, flammable hydrocarbon refrigerants in the affectedhydrocarbon refrigerant blends, or halo- residential and commercial appliances.hydrocarbon blends with flammable However, fulfilling governmenthydrocarbons has further complicated regulations is only part of the compliancematters, due to the risk of fire and/or landscape for HVAC equipment andexplosion associated with their use. appliance manufacturers. EquipmentThe most significant regulation affecting must also comply with safety standardsthe use of flammable refrigerants in order to be installed in a workplace orin appliances is the Clean Air Act, (depending upon the local jurisdiction)administered by the U.S. Environmental in other facilities. Retailers, insurers andProtection Agency (EPA), under its other parties may also require evidenceSignificant New Alternatives Policy of compliance with safety standards.page 2