4 Ways Hydrocarbons are the Refrigerant of the Future

Commercial Refrigerators Modern Sleek Store Refrigerators | Imbera FoodserviceChanging standards for commercial refrigerators and freezers call for a refrigerant that’s eco-friendly, safe, and efficient. Hydrocarbons already play a key role in many everyday tasks we encounter every day, like cars and stove tops. They’re also growing in popularity as an alternative to HFC refrigerants.    

HFCs have replaced CFCs, which were phased out in the 1980s after it was discovered that they depleted the ozone layer. While non-toxic and non-flammable, HFCs have high global warming potential. Hydrocarbon (HC) refrigerants may be the solution for both better environmental conversation and better refrigeration. Here are four ways hydrocarbons are the refrigerant of the future. 

1. Lower GWP

Global Warming Potential (GWP) measures how much heat can be trapped in the atmosphere by a greenhouse gas. HFC refrigerants have a relatively high GWP — even greater than carbon dioxide due to their longer life spans.  

Hydrocarbons have a lower GWP than other refrigerants. This is because the R290 refrigerant is a refined blend of propane, a natural fossil fuel. Hydrocarbons also have zero ODP, which means they won’t deplete the ozone layer.  

2. Reduction in Operating Costs

Hydrocarbon refrigerants are beneficial to the environment and your bottom line. Their thermal capacity is higher than that of HFCs, which means they cool units faster. Faster heat absorption reduces the amount of energy used to get the job done, lowering your energy costs.  

Switching to HC refrigerants could reduce energy consumption by up to 24%. This results in saving hundreds of dollars on your energy bills. 

3. Safe to Use

Many people are concerned when they hear the word “propane,” a highly flammable chemical. The fear is that hydrocarbon could grow to unsafe levels when refrigeration equipment remains closed, causing an explosion.  

Fortunately, testing has alleviated these concerns over safety and stability. During tests where a full charge could leak, a hazardous concentration level was never reached. In fact, the propane levels in hydrocarbon refrigerants is less than everyday items like spray paint.  

4. Cost Efficient

HC refrigerants are a cost-effective option for cooling and freezing needs. This is because hydrocarbon is a basic compound of hydrogen and carbon, which both occur naturally. It can be found in large quantities in crude oil.  

They cost less and increase energy efficiency. HCs are compatible with the components and oils featured in many existing systems. This means you won’t spend undue time or money making the switch.  

Your commercial refrigeration units account for a large portion of your total energy costs. As HC refrigerants grow in popularity in the United States, businesses can improve efficiency and lower operating costs.  

Imbera is the leading global manufacturer of commercial refrigeration. Our technological innovations are focused on sustainability, efficiency, and reducing energy consumption. To learn more about our products and how they serve your needs, contact Imbera or call 678-504-6835 today.