Danger From Refrigerants In Air Conditioning Systems

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Danger From Refrigerants In Air Conditioning Systems
Danger From Refrigerants In Air Conditioning Systems

Video: Danger From Refrigerants In Air Conditioning Systems

Video: Danger From Refrigerants In Air Conditioning Systems
Video: Air conditioning Unit Accident on the Car 2023, September

The “R1234yf” chemical refrigerant used in many car air conditioning systems can be a serious hazard in the event of a fire. The Federal Environment Agency warns that toxic and corrosive hydrofluoric acid can escape.

Environmentalists have warned the auto industry against the use of the chemical coolant «R1234yf» in future air conditioning systems. The coolant, which is apparently still being considered by foreign and some German car companies, is flammable and releases toxic gases in the event of a fire, said Deutsche Umwelthilfe after tests. In the event of an accident, there would be an acute risk to vehicle occupants and helpers, explained the managing director of Deutsche Umwelthilfe (DUH), Jürgen Resch, on Thursday in Berlin. This has been confirmed by the Federal Environment Agency (UBA). In the event of a fire, very toxic and corrosive hydrofluoric acid is formed, said UBA expert Wolfgang Plehn.

Some manufacturers wall

The Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA), on the other hand, stated that the majority of German automotive companies wanted to use the environmentally friendly refrigerant "R744" - as announced by the association in autumn 2007. According to environmental aid, these are VW / Porsche, BMW and Daimler, after they too had tested the "R1234yf" agent offered by the American chemical company Honeywell.

The DUH managing director emphasized that Opel and Ford had built on DUH inquiries. They are apparently still pursuing the new chemical system solution, which is cheaper for manufacturers than using the environmentally friendly refrigerant R744, said Resch. Background to the conflict: An EU directive stipulates for 2011 that the previous chemical cooling systems may no longer be installed in new vehicles because of the harmful greenhouse gases.

Check Opel and Ford

At Opel in Rüsselsheim, the dpa request said: "We are currently testing both refrigerants -" R1234yf "and" R744 "- to see whether we can use them." “All criteria for avoiding environmental and health risks are checked. At the moment no decision has been made as to which means we will give preference. " But that will happen in good time before the 2011 deadline.

Ford in Cologne rejected the allegations of the DUH. "We will not let the German Environmental Aid dictate which refrigerant we can install in our cars," said spokesman Isfried Hennen. The group is currently testing both refrigerants under the aspects of environment, safety and costs. Both means are equally good from an environmental point of view. According to a spokeswoman, Volkswagen rejects "R1234yf", but is still looking for other alternatives. Other German car dealerships initially did not want to comment.