We all have a refrigerator in the house, and almost all of us have an air conditioner. What are they powered from? From freon, which is the commercial name of the refrigerant gas: consisting of a mixture of methane and ethane, it can also be in liquid form.
Freon have been widely used as refrigerants, as propellants, as solvents or as expanders; extinguishing agents in the food, chemical and refrigeration and air conditioning industries.
In addition, freon is also used as part of the extinguishing mixture loaded into the extinguishers and aerosol cartridges, to “help” medicines be pushed out. The freon, therefore, is a multipurpose gas and very present in our daily lives, even if we do not realize it.
This gas is generally contained in pans or bottles that feed the cooling system coil. It can happen, however, that there are losses due to the wear of the materials, or (more unlikely) also due to manufacturing defects or a wrong installation of the gas recharge.
Freon is odourless and colourless, so it is impossible for humans to detect its presence.
So what are the potential dangers to humans in the event of a freon leak?
Freon is dangerous when inhaled for a long time, with the first symptoms being similar to those of mild poisoning: dizziness, headaches, blurred vision, increased heart rate and the skin cyanosis.
If the inhalation of the freon continues, the first symptoms of intoxication such as cough, nausea and vomiting, pains in the windpipe, shortness of breath, hypotension appear. It could even lead to pulmonary edema, with very serious, even fatal consequences.
Beinat offers a range of freon gas detection devices, such as the HCF100 and the SG800
The first is a semiconductor probe with degree protection IP55 that can detect freon leaks type 410A, R134A, 407C, R32, 404 and 507. Equipped with self-diagnosis, which allows automatic calibration, is able to detect freon leaks with great precision.
The SG800, on the other hand, is a stand-alone probe with the fault control that also includes Freon among the different gases it detects (including explosive ones).
Do not forget that the most dangerous gases are the ones you cannot see or smell.