Safety standards and building regulations
All refrigerants can be safe if standards and safe-handling guidelines are followed. Standards ensure common practices, technological alignment, and legal conformity. This last point being important from the industry’s point of view since it reduces risk and provides legal assurance when new products are developed. Danfoss participates in the standardization task forces that contribute to the development of important safety standards such as ISO 5149, EN378, and ASHRAE 15.
Refrigerant and safety standards
Refrigerant standards are in connection with safety standards. For example, ASHRAE 34 was used in ISO 817 to create the refrigeration classifications. These classifications are in turn used in safety standards like ISO 5149, ASHRAE 15, and the European safety standard EN 378.
When evaluating refrigerants, risk awareness is always a crucial parameter. Ask yourself, “What level of risk is acceptable?” Before answering, keep in mind the difference between perceived and actual risk. Perceived risk of the new refrigerant tends to be seen as higher than the actual risk. As industry competence and user experience increase, we will see a reduction in the perceived risk of using a refrigerant. Compare this to the perceived risk of flying versus driving a car: driving a car is often perceived as being safer than air travel, while the opposite is actually true.
The development of standards is moving towards a wider acceptance of flammable refrigerants.