In this heat, air conditioners are becoming a necessity in our life. Life nowadays is harder without them and the changing weather of the world each day can only become a bit tolerable with some cool air spilling out from this machinery.
We all know that air conditioners can also cause some harm to our environment because of the gases that are used in them. Even though they are harmful, we can’t deny their importance in cooling gadgets. These gases are called refrigerants and are specially prepared to carry out the cooling mechanism in ACs.
Which Gas Is Mostly Used In AC To Work?
Any fluid, gas, or liquid called refrigerant is used in air conditioning systems to take the heat out of a room and send the hot air outside.
Freon is a non-flammable refrigerant that is used in air conditioning. Using this Freon, your AC system can produce cold air through several evaporation cycles. An air conditioning system is a critical part of industrial machinery.
What Is A Refrigerant, And How Does It Work?
A refrigerant is a fluid used in air conditioners and refrigerators to take heat from the food or room (in the case of air conditioners) and release it into the air. When heat is added to a liquid refrigerant, it changes from liquid to gas and back to fluid (when a compressor compresses it).
When it comes to refrigerants, you may either get them as liquid or gas. In combination with other components, like compressors and evaporators, it may be used to cool or refrigerate the surroundings. This article will examine how an air conditioner uses a refrigerant, how it operates, and the rules that regulate it.
The Cooling Agent’s Mechanism:
- Copper coils store the refrigerant in air conditioners.
- When the gas absorbs heat from the inside air, the refrigerant changes from a low-pressure gas into a high-pressure liquid.
- A fan pumps hot air over an air conditioner’s coils, which cools the refrigerant and delivers it outside.
- After cooling, the refrigerant reverts to a low-pressure gas.
- Air is cooled as it passes over the coils and is circulated to the home by a second fan.
- The cycle repeats itself.
How To Choose The Best Refrigerant?
Although there is a variety of refrigerants available in the market, the best refrigerant is chosen based on:
- Its good thermodynamic properties,
- The fact that it doesn’t rust, and
- Its safety (non-toxic and non-flammable).
Different Kinds Of Gases Used In Air Conditioners
Let’s find out which gas has been used in air conditioning over time.
1. Chlorofluorocarbons (Cfcs):
In the past, Freon, a CFC brand name, was the most common coolant. Freon was a brand name for “R-12,” a coolant made by Dupont. CFCs are one of the primary contributors to the greenhouse effect and the loss of the ozone layer. Thus their production ceased in 1994.
2. Hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs):
HCFCs (hydrochlorofluorocarbons) replaced CFCs in the 1990s and 2000s. R-22 is the most common HCFC. R-22 is not much better than CFC because it has chlorine in it. But it isn’t good for the environment and could cause the ozone layer to deplete just like CFCs.
3. Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs):
Manufacturers made another set of refrigerants called HFCs (or HydroFluoroCarbons) to get rid of the chlorine in the refrigerant. Even though they could also cause global warming, they are better than HCFCs because they don’t hurt the ozone layer.
R-410A is the HFC that is most often used in air conditioners. This refrigerant is better than R-22 regarding how it affects the ozone layer and how efficiently it uses energy, but it still contributes to global warming.
R-32, used in air conditioners, and R-134A, used in refrigerators, are two more HFCs that are often used.
4. Hydrocarbons (HC):
“R-290” and “R-600A” are the two most eco-friendly refrigerants currently available. The chemical names for R-290 and R-600A are “Propane” and “Iso-Butane,” respectively. They have no halogens, don’t hurt the ozone layer, and are the least likely to cause global warming.
They also save a lot of energy, but because they are hydrocarbons, they are very flammable.
However, they are the greenest refrigerants on the market. Companies that make appliances that use these refrigerants say they have used them carefully and that the instruments are safe for the environment.
R410A Is The Most Efficient Refrigerant
It might be interesting to know that air conditioners that run on R410A are more energy-efficient, clean the air better, make the room more comfortable, and are more reliable.
Air conditioning, refrigeration, and freezing are not possible without refrigeration. Now you know that even though they are widely used, some refrigerants are harmful to the environment and could cause global warming.
How To Take Care Of An Air Conditioner Unit?
Don’t forget to take care of your air conditioner, so it works well and doesn’t break down. Every summer, check the gas charge on your appliances and look at the connections, nuts, and welds.
- To do this, you need to unplug the air conditioner from the power source.
- Make a solution of soapy water and a brush, and use it to clean any places where refrigerants might be leaking out.
- Keep a close eye out for bubbles.
- If you see bubbles, your device is likely leaking.
- If you see leaks or think your device might be leaking, or if you have to run it more than once because it doesn’t cool down enough, you should call a technician.
When Should I Change My AC?
Think about updating now rather than waiting until your older device fails. When it comes to efficiency and reliability, you’ll discover that the investment is well worth it. If you need assistance, contact your local AC Service office.
Although there are many efficient gases available in the market to be used in Air Conditioners, they also have some harmful effects. For example, these refrigerant gases cause depletion of the ozone layer which is a global concern.
This is why some types have been banned long ago, and new solutions keep coming up. But air conditioning has become essential not only commercially but also to keep expensive equipment cool and efficient. So you have to make a little sacrifice to be comfortable in your life.