Lead Forensics

Is Your Business Ready For The Upcoming F-Gas Regulations?

From next year, the way we use F-Gases across the UK and Europe will change. We’ve put together this guide to help you understand what is happening and if it will affect your business.

From 1 January 2020, the use of new (sometimes known as ‘virgin’) F-Gases with a global warming potential (GWP) of 2500 or more will be banned from use.

The higher the GWP of a gas, the more likely it is to contribute to global warming. For example, R404a has a GWP of 3937, which means every 1kg of R404a is equivalent to 3,937kg of CO2  if released into the atmosphere.

This affects all equipment that uses F-Gases, from air conditioning, cabinet refrigeration, production areas and chiller/freezer cold rooms.

The regulations mean that if your equipment needs fixing or servicing, your engineer will not be able to use these banned virgin F-Gases with them.

The new regulations will apply to the UK, regardless of whether we leave the European Union or not.

Use these gases? They will be banned from January…

Gas GWP value
R23 14800
R508b 13514
R508a 13158
R507 4000
R404a 3937
R428a 3597
R125 3500
R434a 3247
R22a 3145
R422d 2732

Use these gases? You’re still okay to keep using them!

Gas GWP value
R424a 2439
R417a 2346
R423a 2283
R438a 2262
R452a 2140
R427a 2137
R407a 2110
R410a 2088
R442a 1887
R407f 1825
R437a 1805
R407c 1773
R407d 1629
R426a 1506
R134a 1430
R449a 1397
R448a 1387
R245fa 1031
R32 675

Are there any exemptions?

There are a few exemptions to the regulations.

If you use:

Then you are exempt.

The legislation only affects the use of new (or ‘virgin’) F-Gases.

If you use  reclaimed/recycled gases in your systems, you are temporarily exempt from the legislation until 2030.

Reclaimed F-Gases are ones that have been recovered from equipment, sent back to the manufacturer to be re-processed and made available for re-use.

I am going to be affected by this, what do I do?

If you do not comply with the regulations you may be liable for enforcement action, with penalties of up to £200,000.

If you are going to be affected by this regulation change, there are three options:

The Government has an Enhanced Capital Allowance Scheme that allows businesses to benefit from tax breaks when investing in energy-efficient equipment: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/enhanced-capital-allowance-scheme-for-energy-saving-technologies

What is Aircon Group doing about the upcoming legislation?

If you are an Aircon Group customer, you can rest safe in the knowledge that you are prepared for the upcoming legislative changes.

Ever since we were made aware of the changes in legislation in 2016, we’ve been moving to use refrigerants that are more environmentally friendly. For example, we’ve been using R448a (with a GWP of 1387) instead of R404a (GWP of 3937) to ensure that our customers are not affected by the ban and can continue to grow their business.

We’re also future-proofing for upcoming legislation too. For example, there will be additional changes to legislation in 2022 when GWP levels will be further reduced, and we are making our customers aware if changes need to be made. We’ll make more information about this available on our blog soon.

If you have any questions or concerns about the upcoming f-gas regulations and how they could affect your business, please contact us for support and advice at sales@aircongroup.com.