How to Choose Air Conditioner Refrigerant? Which is Better, R410A or R32?

Refrigerant is a medium in various heat engines to complete the entire energy conversion process. Due to the damage of R22 refrigerant to the ozone layer and the existence of the greenhouse effect, China has implemented the “fluorine ban” since July 2007, and replaced Freon R22 with a more environmentally friendly R410a. The ozone depletion potential value (ODP) of R410a is 0 , the Global Warming Potential (GWP) is less than 0.2. But how do we choose between R32 and R410a?

r410a vs r32

Advantages of R410 Refrigerant

R410A is a new type of environmentally friendly refrigerant that does not destroy the ozone layer. Its working pressure is about 1.6 times that of R22 air conditioners, and its cooling (warming) efficiency is high. The new refrigerant R410A consists of two quasi-azeotropic mixtures, R32 and R125, with 50% each. It has the appearance of colorless, not cloudy, volatile, boiling point -51.6 ℃, freezing point -155 ℃.

Features of R410 Refrigerant

1. Does not destroy the ozone layer. Its molecular formula does not contain chlorine, so its Ozone Depletion Potential (ODP) is 0. The Global Warming Potency (GWP) is 2025.

2. Very low toxicity. The allowable concentration is the same as that of R22, which is 1000ppm.

3. Non-flammable. The flammable polarity in the air is 0.

4. High chemical and thermal stability.

5. The water solubility is almost the same as that of R22.

6. It is a mixed refrigerant, consisting of two refrigerants (R32 and R125).

7. Not compatible with mineral oil or alkyl benzene oil, but compatible with POE [ester lubricating oil] and PVE [ether lubricating oil].

Advantages of R32 Refrigerant

R32, also known as difluoromethane, is a coolant with zero ozone depletion potential. Difluoromethane and pentafluoroethane form an azeotrope (known as R-410A) that is used as a replacement for chlorofluorocarbons (also known as freon) in new coolant systems, primarily as a replacement for HCFC-22. Although it has zero ozone depletion potential, it has a high global warming potential, which is 550 times that of carbon dioxide.

Compared with R410a, R32 is relatively more environmentally friendly, with less consumption, relatively low cost, and high efficiency. However, the working pressure of R32 is the highest, and the copper tube material of the same internal and external machine is the most likely to leak. R32 has a huge flaw, and that is flammability. If R32 flammable gas comes into contact with the air, it will inevitably cause an explosion if it encounters an open flame.

Most of the R32 refrigerants are used in wall-mounted air conditioners in China, and a small part of them use R410a. The main reason is that it is a relatively cheap, low-cost investment, and has high refrigeration efficiency. However, more than 95% of central air conditioners use R410a refrigerants.


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