R404A has become one of the most extensively utilized refrigerants in the last 10 to 15 years. It was launched in the mid-1990s as a substitute for ozone-depleting refrigerants such as CFCs (such as R12 and R502) and, more recently, HCFCs (such as R22). It has become the main refrigerant in the grocery business across Europe for both chilled and frozen food refrigeration. It is also commonly utilized in other commercial systems, such as industrial refrigeration and cold storage.
What Is the Problem with R404A?
R404A has two major issues: (a) it does not attain the highest energy efficiency in many applications, and (b) it has a very large global warming potential (GWP).
The comparatively low energy efficiency results in additional operating expenses as well as additional CO2 emissions from the power plants that provide the electricity consumed. In many applications, alternative refrigerants can provide power savings ranging from 7% to 12%.
R404A has the highest GWP of any frequently used refrigerant, at 3922. R134a has a density of 1,430 while R407F (Performax LT) has a density of 1850. As a result, the global warming impact of 1 kg of R404A leakage is two to three times that of other HFC refrigerants.
It’s worth noting that traditionally, stores employed two separate refrigerants: R12 for chill systems and R502 for freezer systems. Each refrigerant’s working temperature might be well optimized. When these ozone-depleting systems were phased out, most supermarkets chose to rationalize their refrigerant consumption; most supermarket chill and freezer systems now utilize R404A. That may have been convenient, but it results in some compromise in the plant design and a loss of overall efficiency.
WESTRON® is a refrigerant supplier, and it offers an inclusive range of commercial, substitute, transitional, and long-term refrigerants. You can contact them for any maintenance or refrigerant gas change.