Refrigerant leak detection is heavily regulated by government agencies

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Courtesy of Verisae

Refrigerant leak monitoring in refrigeration and air-conditioning (RAC) systems and heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC-R) equipment is very challenging, even for the most skilled HVAC-R technician. The leak could be well concealed from view in tubing, a system component, or in an operating or safety control component.

With the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) laws documented in The U.S. Clean Air Act (sections 608 & 609), gas leak tracking takes on critical urgency. The intent of the mandates is to lower emissions of gases harmful to the environment. As such, the new government rules no longer give AC technicians the option of adding refrigerants when the system is low due to a leak. Rather, the leak has to be found and fixed within a specified period of time.

There are many types of monitoring equipment that can be used in refrigerant leak detection, some of it automated and others acting as sniffers for onsite management. To find the leak, service technicians have to pick the best method to use. Methods include a soap solution, a halide torch, dye interception, isolation of a component from the system, or pressurizing the system with dry N2O gas.

All of these options take time and money, which can turn into a very expensive heating and cooling service call. A less costly alternative for companies is utilizing gas management software that pinpoints the origin of a leak by either tracking AC events over time to establish common patterns or to develop an systematic leak tracking technology.

An automatic leak detector is one of the easiest choices used in gas leak monitoring. These types of detectors can find fugitive emissions of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) and chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs). Quick classification of a leak is important because the release of these gases is strictly regulated by the EPA, with companies subject to legal enforcement if their emissions are not corrected within a certain timeframe.

Refrigerant gas tracking tools is a important tool in refrigerant leak detection. It provides companies with accurate details on what their refrigeration and air-conditioning (RAC) systems and heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment are venting, tracks performance, tracks and identifies refrigerants gas leaks, offers gas usage data, and keeps accurate records on maintenance.

Refrigerant leak monitoring regulations govern the repair of a leak and outline proper disposal for a system that cannot be repaired. These inclusive requirements are in force in the United States, as well as many foreign countries. The treaties set forth a globally response to improving and protecting the planet.

Quick implementation of refrigerants leak tracking is of great importance to the environment. Refrigerant contains gases that have been identified as damaging to the ozone layer and show a high correlation for causing global warming. To comply with environmental standards, many companies are investing in a refrigerant monitoring program to manage and track equipment usage.

Because of ecological and cost concerns related to refrigerants leak detection, many facilities with units that use refrigerants are relying on gas tracker applications. A refrigerant tracker monitors refrigeration and air-conditioning (RAC) units and heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems around the clock and instantly detects the location of any emissions. Studies show that commercial and industrial facilities can save thousands of dollars a year by monitoring equipment for fugitive emissions.

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