Release Date: 07/01/2013
The Environmental Protection Agency (E.P.A.) released warnings regarding the use of refrigerant substitutes that pose fire and explosion risks.
Many homeowners are barely scraping by these days, and those who are forced to rent or lease substandard homes, are faced with having to replace air conditioners and refrigerators with HCFC-22 (R-22), which is very expensive, and only sold under strict rules. R-22, has been banned for many uses, as has propane. There are only a few instances where R-22, or a substitute may be used, and it is never approved for individual use.
There have been many explosions, fires, injuries and death due to the uses of substitute refrigerants, such as R-290, 22a, 22-A, R-22a, HC-22a, and CARE 40.
At this time the E.P.A. is investigating cases where propane has been marketed and used as a substitute for HCFC-22 (R-22), a refrigerant that is widely used in home air conditioning systems. Home air conditioning systems were never made for propane and other flammable refrigerants.
What Is A Good Alternative To Propane Based Refrigerants? The E.P.A is currently researching to find safe and environmentally sane substitute for R-22, but at this time there are none.
Part of the problem with many refrigerants is that they deplete the Ozone Layer.
A number of refrigerants with “22a” or “R-22a” in the name contain highly flammable hydrocarbons, such as propane. These refrigerants are being marketed to consumers seeking to recharge existing home and motor vehicle air conditioning systems that were not designed to use propane or other flammable refrigerants. These refrigerants have never been submitted to EPA for review of their health and environmental impacts and are not approved for use in existing air conditioning systemsFor A list of Refrigerants and Air Conditioning, that have been approved by the EPA, follow this link. http://www.epa.gov/ozone/snap/refrigerants/
I know it's hot out there, and this is a perfect time to find alternatives to piped air. It has become too expensive to heat and cool, for many individuals and families.
Although freezing air was a great idea at its start, it is like so many other things that has come through the Industrial revolution that seemed like a good idea at the time, but what was not considered were the consequences or trade-offs for such luxury.
I hope you stay safe, and stay cool.