Counting down time to final phase out of R22
This countdown clock on the web site of air-conditioning company Ergro is counting down the time remaining before the sale and storage of reclaimed and recycled refrigerant R22 will be banned. The screen grab was taken towards the end of February, and the time remaining will reach zero at midnight on 31 December 2014.
Managing director Chris Wollen says, ‘Overnight, this will make most air-conditioning units currently installed in the country unserviceable and leave unprepared businesses with inoperative buildings as soon as the unit breaks down. For many companies that can’t afford to close buildings due to air-conditioning malfunction, the time to prepare has come.’
Estimates vary, but there may be upwards of 200 000 R22 systems still in operation.
Chris Wollen also points out that existing R22 equipment will be at least 13 years old, so replacement is generally the best option. The efficiency of new equipment is at lest 10% better than old equipment, giving a five to 10-year payback.
He warns against refrigerant replacement: ‘Conversion is the most cost-effective approach, but be aware of the age of equipment. A drop-in replacement refrigerant could affect capacity.’
The company is running a summit at the Royal Society of Medicine in London on 23 April and a series of roadshows. There is also a factsheet on the company’s web site.