Hydrocarbons are highly flammable and must be handled with care. If they are used responsibly, hydrocarbons can be employed in a variety of refrigeration and air conditioning applications. In order to ensure safety, hydrocarbon applications are governed by various international, regional and national standards and regulation. Hydrocarbons can only pose an explosion risk if the concentration is between the lower and upper flammability limits. Safety standards are developing rapidly in these years and is this is necessary to exploit the full potential of these refrigerants. Main standards are the IEC 60335-2-40, IEC 60335-2-89, ISO 5149 and EN378.When following the safety standards the concentration of leaked refrigerant will not get above LFL where ignition sources can ignite it, even in extreme situations. The necessary safety precautions and system design depend on the refrigerant charge. In general ignition sources inside the application must be avoided. Most hydrocarbons are non-toxic, with the main safety risk coming from their flammability, although gaseous hydrocarbons are heavier than air and will displace air in lungs.
Lower flammability limit (LFL)
Upper flammability limit (UFL)
Lower and upper flammability limits
Only authorised persons certified for the installation and maintenance of refrigeration systems containing flammable refrigerants should engage in installation and maintenance.
Typical applications for hydrocarbons are:
Find relevant seminars about Hydrocarbon
Leapfrog to a long-term solution with Danfoss’ wide product portfolio for hydrocarbons
Energy Efficient Hydrocarbon Ice Makers
Safety Always Comes First
Find relevant brochures about applications and hydrocarbons in general
Practical Application of R 600a Isobutane and R 290 Propane in Small Hermetic Systems (pdf)
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