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The Global Stance on R-32

November 30, 2020

Did you know it’s likely you’re already using R-32 refrigerant? For many years, R-32 has been a key component of many other blended refrigerants. Because of R-32’s availability, low cost, and excellent performance, it is used as a key ingredient in blends, including R-410A. In fact, R-32 is the pure, single component refrigerant that helps make blends like R-410A so efficient.

Because of R-32’s excellent thermodynamic performance characteristics, an R-32 system could have up to 40% less charge than R-410A in certain applications, meaning you could reduce refrigerant usage in the equipment and potentially also reduce quantities leaking to the environment. R-32 can help us achieve the 3Rs: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, a new reality in the industry.

Being a pure, single-component refrigerant, R-32 can’t lose its composition like a blended refrigerant and is well suited to retain its quality over time. It can be topped off and recharged in the field in both liquid and gas phases; because the composition doesn’t change, it’s easy to clean and reuse on site. R-32 can be reclaimed and recycled with a simple cleaning process, as compared to blends with less stable HFOs that must be distilled to their pure compounds and then remixed.

What’s not new, though, is the adoption of R-32 across the world. Back in 2012, HVAC companies in Japan introduced R-32 in split systems, followed by VRF systems and chillers. Companies in other countries across Europe, as well as India, Thailand and Australia followed suit in 2014. In 2016, window air conditioners in the United States began to take advantage of R-32’s many benefits. With more than 100 million R-32 units already in operation worldwide and more than 20 million coming on line every year, R-32 has become the de facto global standard.