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Refrigeration and its different types

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Fridges are one of those things like cookers and kettles – everybody has got one in their kitchen, they use it every day, don’t know what to do when it breaks down, and yet nobody really gives this vital household and industrial appliance a second thought. 

If you’re looking into buying a new fridge, whether it is for your home or for your business, then it could be time that you educated yourself a little bit about the subject – which is where we can help! Read on to find out just a few of the ins and outs of refrigeration and the different types of systems that you can come across.

In brief

For a quick overview of the science behind refrigeration, you basically have liquids that are turned into gases which then in turn cool and even freeze water. For such an ordinary piece of equipment, it is certainly fancy – for a full run down on refrigeration science, have a look at this ExplainThatStuff article. 

Ammonia refrigeration

Since various gases can be used to create this cooling effect found in fridges, there are of course different types of refrigeration solutions, particularly when it comes to those destined for industrial settings. One of these types is ammonia refrigeration. 

Ammonia is a good choice since it doesn’t contribute to greenhouse gases, is produced biologically and has a stable price too. One risk is that is can become over-pressurised; however there are many safety measures in place, particularly in Europe to ensure its safety. You can learn more about ammonia refrigeration at Star Refrigeration, who specialise in industrial refrigeration. 

CO2 refrigeration

Previously, F-gas was a popular choice for refrigeration, however since this is a greenhouse gas, there has been a move away from it, with more environmentally solutions being preferred. Carbon dioxide refrigeration has now become a common replacement, moreover since these types of refrigeration systems are also more easily recycled. Once again, you are more likely to find CO2 being used in refrigeration for larger and more industrial appliances.

Isobutane and R-600a refrigeration

F-gas was also once used in household refrigeration appliances, however this is fortunately no longer really the case, and in Europe at least, fridges tend to employ isobutene or R-600a in their cooling systems. These both have a much smaller impact on the atmosphere.

Additionally, these newer fridges all come with a European energy standard indicator, to let you know just how much energy they are going to be consuming. This came after a push in the 1990s to make fridges more environmentally friendly and more energy efficient, which can only be a good thing for our energy bills! It’s a clear and transparent way to be more aware about our own energy consumption, particularly in regards to our everyday household appliances.  If you’re not entirely sure what you should be looking for on the energy label, then have a look at the European Commission official guidelines to get a better idea.

Since fridges are something that we all need and use in our daily lives, if you’re looking to invest in a new appliance, it’s always good to know the facts.

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