Understanding the Different Types of Aircon Gases for Home and Car Use

Are you considering buying or replacing an air conditioner? Knowing what type of gas your system contains may be vital in determining the right one for your comfort. In this blog post, we’ll examine the different types of aircon gases that are commonly used in home and car air conditioning systems and provide insight into their respective advantages and disadvantages. Read on to find out more!

What Is An Air Conditioning Gas?

Air conditioning gases, also known as refrigerants, are fluids used in air conditioners to absorb and release heat. Refrigerants are generally classified into two types: hydrocarbons (HCs) and halogenated compounds (CFCs). Refrigerants can help to maintain an ideal temperature by absorbing and releasing heat energy that enters the room or vehicle. By doing so they enable us to enjoy a comfortable environment year-round.

Common refrigerant options include R134a, R12, R22, R410A and R1234yf or HFO-1234yf . Each one of these has its own advantages and disadvantages associated with it depending on the application for which you need it. All of them work in similar ways but have different boiling points so must be chosen wisely for their intended use.

Different Types Of Aircon Gases

Here, we will discuss the main aircon gases used for home and car air conditioning systems, such as R134a, R12, R22, R410A and R1234yf or HFO-1234yf. Keep reading to find out more!


R134a is a non-flammable, colourless and odourless gas used as an aircon refrigerant that does not contribute to ozone depletion. It has become the most popular choice for modern cars because of its low cost and good cooling performance.

R134a is thermodynamically efficient; it can achieve up to 8% more capacity than R12 while using less energy. Additionally, it can operate in temperatures beyond those of other gases with less pressure drop, making it ideal for high-temperature applications.

However, R134a has a higher global warming potential than other gases which makes it environmentally unfriendly when released into the atmosphere. As such, car manufacturers have been looking for alternatives with lower global warming ratings such as HFO-1234yf or R1234yf refrigerants.


R12 is also known as Freon, dichlorodifluoromethane or R-12. It was the first chemical refrigerant to be used in air conditioning systems and is suitable for automotive use; however, it has a high Global Warming Potential (GWP), which means it contributes more than other chemicals to climate change.

R12 is known for its non-flammability, low toxicity and stability over a wide range of temperatures. It does not deplete the ozone layer like earlier models but it still produces significant amounts of greenhouse gases, making proper disposal critically important after use.


R22 is one of the most commonly used aircon gases for home and car use. It is a chlorine-based refrigerant with a hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC) composition. R22 has excellent heat transfer capabilities and offers good cooling efficiency, making it ideal for both residential and automotive applications.

However, since R22 depletes the ozone layer when released into the atmosphere, it is prohibited under the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer due to its damaging effects on human health and global climate change. As such, its production was phased out in 2020 as part of international protocols on controlling greenhouse gas emissions.


R410A is a chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) and hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) blend, made of 50% R32 gas and 50% R125. It was introduced in the late 1990s as an environmentally friendly alternative to R22, as it had lower ozone depletion potential. Moreover, it has better thermodynamic properties compared to other gases and when used in air conditioning systems, delivers higher cooling efficiency while requiring less energy consumption.

R410A is one of the most common refrigerants used in modern air conditioning systems today. It is considered a safe option due to its non-toxic nature which also helps reduce global warming since it does not deplete the ozone layer or contribute significantly to greenhouse gas emission levels. As such, many countries have mandated its use for new and state-of-the-art A/C installations that prioritize energy efficiency.

R1234yf Or HFO-1234yf

R1234yf or HFO-1234yf is a hydrofluoroolefin (HFO) blend and has been developed as an alternative to R134a refrigerant. This type of aircon gas uses lower GWP, meaning it produces fewer greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming than R134a.

R1234yf or HFO-1234yf has become the go-to choice for car manufacturers when designing new models since 2011 due to its better environmental credentials. It is also safer than other gases, as it will not cause any ozone depletion if released into the atmosphere and it does not pose a significant risk in terms of toxicity or flammability when handled correctly.

Being both efficient and cost-effective, this type of air conditioner gas can be used both in home air conditioning systems and car air conditioning systems.

Advantages And Disadvantages Of Different Aircon Gases

Find out more about how the different aircon gases can affect your home and car AC systems and their advantages and disadvantages.


R134a is a synthetic HFC (hydrofluorocarbon) gas and has been used in automobile air conditioning systems since the mid-1990s. It’s non-toxic, non-flammable and does not deplete the ozone layer or contribute to global warming when released into the atmosphere.

R134a also offers excellent cooling power, is lighter than older refrigerant gases such as R12, can be easily compressed for use in modern vehicle AC systems and is approved for use by all North American governments. Its low boiling point means that it quickly becomes gas when exposed to heat during an auto AC repair job.


R12 is a hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC) refrigerant that was commonly used in automobile air conditioning systems until the 1990s. It is also known by its trade name Freon and has been phased out as a major refrigerant due to its ozone-depleting effects.

R12 works like any other type of aircon gas; it takes heat from inside a car or home and transfers it outside. However, because the chemical structure of R12 allows it to bond with ozone molecules upon release into the atmosphere, this makes its use more hazardous than other forms of cooling gases currently available.


R22 is a widely used air conditioning gas, also known as HCFC-22 or Freon 22. It has been the most used refrigerant in residential and light commercial installations for many years due to its relatively low cost and stability. R22 is an ozone-depleting substance, that causes damage to the stratospheric ozone layer when released into the atmosphere.

This gas should not be used in the production of new equipment anymore, however existing systems using this gas can still be serviced with it until their end of life. R22 can be recycled if necessary but must never be vented into the atmosphere; all traces must be recovered before any maintenance work that requires the opening of an aircon system takes place.

R22 tends to become more expensive over time as there are strict regulations controlling its use while global supplies diminish; therefore servicing existing systems with R22 may become non-viable at some point in future which would require retrofitting those systems with a replacement refrigerant instead.


R410A is a chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) and hydrofluorocarbon (HCFC) free refrigerant. It is becoming increasingly popular for home air conditioning systems due to its reduction in greenhouse gas emissions compared with traditional CFCs and HCFCs. R410A offers improved performance, higher pressure and efficiency when compared to other refrigerants.

R410A has lower global warming potential than many of the other gases, making it an effective alternative that is both eco-friendly and efficient. It also requires no oil change after conversion from another system, meaning all maintenance costs can remain low. Additionally, R410A operates with more stable pressures during operation than its predecessors which enhances the life expectancy of critical components such as compressors, improving long-term cost-effectiveness for users.

R1234yf Or HFO-1234yf

R1234yf, also known as HFO-1234yf, is a hydrofluoroolefin refrigerant that is becoming increasingly popular in air conditioning systems. This gas was designed to replace R134a in automotive applications and has zero Ozone Depletion Potential (ODP).

R1234yf exhibits high thermodynamic efficiency which makes it suitable for use in car AC systems. Additionally, this gas does not endanger the environment as it contains very low Global Warming Potential (GWP) and produces no emissions when used in vehicle air conditioners.

Unlike other types of aircon gases such as R22 and R410A, R1234yf needs special equipment for proper installation into an AC unit. This includes condensers and evaporators specifically engineered for R1234yf operation along with other minor alterations or components replacements.

Uses Of Aircon Gases

Discover the different uses for aircon gases in both home and car conditioning systems, and learn more about them by reading on!

Home Air Conditioning Systems

Using the right type of aircon gas is important for any home-cooling system. R410A gas is most commonly used in residential air conditioners because it’s environmentally friendly and efficient.

This non-flammable, chlorine-free refrigerant also has a higher cooling capacity than other options such as R22 or R134a. It operates efficiently in temperatures up to 45°C while consuming less power compared to other gases.

R32 is becoming an increasingly popular alternative to traditional home AC systems due to its high energy efficiency ratings and low global warming potential.

Car Air Conditioning Systems

Paragraph 1: Car air conditioning systems rely on refrigerants such as R134a, R12, and R22 to provide optimal cooling. These gases exist in compressed form in the system’s compressor before expanding into a gas during use.

Paragraph 2: The type of car aircon gas used depends largely on the year of manufacture and engine capacity with modern cars primarily using either R134a or HFO-1234yf as their main source for aircon cooling. Most older vehicles may still use the original gaseous refrigerant, R12.

Paragraph 3: Further advantages of using these various types of gases include convenience, better fuel efficiency and improved performance that keep both drivers and their passengers cool despite rising temperatures outside.


Air conditioning gases are important components of a home or car air conditioning system. There are many different types of refrigerants used in aircon systems, each with its own pros and cons.

Understanding the differences between these gases can help you make an informed decision when selecting an AC for your needs. Ultimately, an effective cooling system requires the perfect combination of gas, compressor and other components to provide superior climate control in any environment.

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