Precision calls on market to ditch harmful refrigerant

Following extensive testing, British refrigeration manufacturer Precision will phase out use of R404A refrigerant in the next few weeks, and move to Honeywell’s new HFO blend Solstice N40 (R448A), for all its freezer and blast chiller products.

R404A is the market’s standard refrigerant for freezers and blast chillers, but has a high GWP (global warming potential) of 3,922. The new R448A refrigerant’s GWP is around 63% lower at 1,386. It is also non-toxic and non-flammable, while being more energy efficient than R404A.

“Now there is a viable alternative, it makes no sense to use R404A,” said Steve Goldsmith, Precision’s engineering manager. “We are seeing an average of 4% energy saving on the cabinets we have tested so far, the biggest gains coming from blast chiller applications.”

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Precision and Honeywell are currently testing new HFO refrigerants for general chilled storage. “The refrigerator solution, a viable alternative to refrigerant R134a, will be available in the next few months,” said Goldsmith. “R404A’s very high GWP was the prime driver in tackling it first.”

“We’ve been working with closely with Honeywell on HFO refrigerants for over two years,” said Nick Williams, Precision’s managing director. “This is an important development – a viable, safe, green and energy efficient alternative to R404A. Hopefully more manufacturers will make the switch to N40/R448A as soon as possible.”

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