R22 PHASE OUT – What can we do to help?
From 1 Jan 2010 it will be illegal to use virgin hydro chlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) such as R-22, when servicing and maintaining air conditioning equipment.
The regulation also calls for all operators of HCFC refrigeration systems to take “all precautionary measures practicable” to prevent and minimise leakage. It states that all fixed equipment systems with a refrigerant charge greater than 3kg will require an annual check for leakage. This must be undertaken by qualified personnel and they will be required to properly recover any HCFC refrigerant removed from a system. Our engineers are fully qualified to undertake this work.
We will help you develop a corporate strategy to ensure compliance with the new legislation. Simply call us now and we will audit your equipment and advise on the options which include replacement, refit or retrofit. A new air conditioning system may represent the best long term investment – in which case we will calculate likely energy savings, CO2 reductions and the payback period. We will project manage the transition to ensure the smooth integration of new systems and the safe disposal of the R-22 refrigerant.
Many R-22 units are now reasonably old and replacement through phase out is often the best way forward. The good news is that new systems using the latest inverter technologies are likely to have a significantly greater cooling capability (up to 15%) and to use far less electricity (on average approx. 50%). The payback period and the opportunity to make significant CO2 reductions can add up to a big incentive to invest (see examples above right).
An added incentive to replace plant may be the Government’s Enhanced Capital Allowance scheme which could allow accelerated tax relief on certain new equipment. Call for further advice, or visit www.eca.gov.uk/etl
Refit or retrofit plant to use alternative refrigerant
Depending on the type, age and condition of equipment in some situations ‘replacement technology’ means it is possible to adapt systems to use legally permitted HFC’s or an HFC blend (drop in replacements). System efficiency and reliability needs to be considered and only qualified engineers can undertake this work.
Continue using recycled refrigerant
Not the long term solution, but until 31 December 2014 it is possible to use a recycled refrigerant – however it’s availability and cost could well be an issue.