With the objective of improved environmental protection, the EU Regulation No 517/2014 established the reduction of refrigerants with a high global warming potential (GWP). Since January 1, 2017, vehicle A/C systems must use refrigerants with GWP <150. HFO1234yf gas is the most widely used solution with a GWP 350 times lower than its predecessor R134a. Controls and limitations on the production, import and sale of R134a gas have been introduced.
The refrigerant trend in A/C station’s business
Following these new regulations, share of A/C stations for HFO refrigerant constantly grew during the last years The European turnover share of Snap-on Climate Solutions in 2021 is 18% Dual Gas machines while for the first time HFO stations share overcame the R134a share:: 43% HFO against 39% R134a (see pie chart).
In terms of quantity, in Europe R134a/HFO relationship is now 50/50%. In northern and central Europe it’s already 55% HFO (with some exceptional countries like Germany and France with 60% HFO), eastern Europe still much lower with “only” 26% HFO and 74% R134a. The HFO average in countries outside Europe (“Rest of the world” ROW excl. USA) is still very low with only 19% share (see histogram).