Urgent Warning from MAC Partners Europe Member Neutronics Inc, dated Dec 2011
Today, December 21st, Auto A/C Reporter received the following –highly important- warning from Neutronics Inc, manufacturer of refrigerant analyzing systems
After review of information provided by many reputable sources, Neutronics urgently advises that all industries using R-134a refrigerant immediately test all cylinders thought to be virgin R-134a (including new 30 pound cylinders). This can be done with a Neutronics Ultima ID DX or HV series Refrigerant Identifier. Any cylinder that is "failed" by the identifier or found to contain 100% R134a with ANY “Air” or “Non(NCG)” should be isolated. It has been reported that cylinders containing contaminated refrigerant are marked as "R-134a" and some have counterfeit name brand chemical company labeling. This contaminated refrigerant cannot be identified using standard pressure and temperature measurements of the cylinder.
Much of the contaminated R-134a refrigerant has been shown to contain significant quantities of R-40. R-40 is extremely toxic, flammable and highly reactive when exposed to aluminium. It is critical to note the safety concerns that R-40 is a harmful and dangerous material that is not suited for Use in R-134a refrigeration air conditioning systems. Most of the contaminated R-134a has been found in counterfeit labeled"virgin" R-134a cylinders. In one instance it was reported that "thousands" of 30 lb. R-134a refrigerant cylinders have been found to be counterfeits of name brand product. Other suspect virgin R-134a containers have also been found to contain large quantities of R-22 and R-12 refrigerants. The vast majority of Neutronics manufactured refrigerant identifiers are configured for the detection of R-134a, R-12, R-22 and Hydrocarbons.
More information can be found in the editions 76 (March 2011) and 78 (July 2011) of Automotive Airconditioning Reporter in which the detection of R-40 was first reported.
Also read the official Press Release which was added below.
The January issue from Automotive A/C Reporter will contain a comprehensive article on this issue.
Press Release Neutronics :