June 2024 Newsletter

A Word from our President

luke 2024

by – Luke Parthemer-Fenix Heating & Cooling

Last month we had a great turn out at WSU tech. The staff and teachers were great at showing us what they are teaching. A big thanks for the hospitality from WSU tech. 

This month we get the pleasure of having Dave Lyons doing a Code CEU class. If you have not heard Dave took over teaching Code classes for Darrell Bogner. We are excited to have Dave this month and planning to do some evening Code training in the fall. 

Please feel free to email or call Luke at (316) 945-4842 or lukep@fenixheat.com with any concerns or questions.

May’s General Meeting

Thank you WSU Tech instructors for the great information you brought to the meeting, we had a great turn out last month. Big congratulations to Justin Dunn from CFM for winning $100!!!

Hope to see you @ future meetings!! All general meetings are held on the 3rd Thursday in June, no meeting in July and in August starts the NEW meeting days, the 3rd Tuesday of each month.

2024 Meetings

June 20th               Dave Lyons 1hr code @ Scotch

July                        NO MEETING

August                   Planning meeting (3rd Tuesday)

Reminder to RSVP on website @  kccaks.com

This list is subject to change due to speakers not able to make the date we have selected for them.

Preparing Your Business for the 2025 Refrigerant Transition

Dealers should understand how the change to A2Ls will impact their companies

By Tim Brizendine

A2L CERTIFIED: Due to their slightly flammable nature, tools like gauges and vacuum pumps must be certified for A2L refrigerant use. (Courtesy of Lennox)
June 5, 2024

The HVAC industry is on the cusp of a transformative era as it takes the next step in reducing HFCs and moving towards more environmentally friendly refrigerants. With the enactment of the AIM Act and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations, dealers find themselves having to prepare their businesses for this upcoming transition. Lennox is one of many OEMs at the forefront of the 2025 refrigerant transition and has provided resources to equip dealers to navigate this transition with confidence.

Unlike the transition from R-22, which posed significant challenges and required changes for dealers, the move to R-454B is expected to be relatively smooth. With its similarities to R-410A, many of the practices and procedures used today will remain applicable. The transition represents a significant step forward in reducing the environmental impact of HVAC, while ensuring continuity in serviceability and reliability.

While this transition is not expected to have as large of an impact as the last transition in 2010, it’s important for dealers to still know how this change will impact serviceability of existing and new units, their business’ product mix, and the HVAC industry looking forward.

Lower-GWP Solutions

The 2025 refrigerant transition requires HVAC products manufactured by OEMs to use a refrigerant with a lower GWP to align with HFC-reduction plans outlined by the EPA. This means that all HVAC OEMs will be converting to either R-32 or R-454B by 2025.

Lennox’s choice of R-454B across its entire product lineup was rooted in a thorough evaluation process, considering factors such as ease of installation and service, safety, and environmental impact. For Lennox, R-454B supports the life expectancy and durability expected of a system, compatibility with existing product components and applications, as well as its ability to efficiently cool and heat a home in extreme weather conditions.

Rest assured, this transition won’t create a heavy burden for installers and technicians. Systems continue to match up as before, and service practices remain the same. Because R-454B and R-32 have similar properties to the current R-410A refrigerant being used by OEMs, there are limited changes to installation requirements.

One key difference is the certification of tools used to service units. Tools like gauges, vacuum pumps, and recovery machines must be certified for A2L refrigerant use by UL or another third-party testing authority. This is due to R-454B and R-32 being slightly more flammable than R-410A.

For existing units, Lennox will continue to offer R-410A repair coils, parts, and R-410A refrigerant for servicing after the 2025 refrigerant transition. Initial costs for compliant systems may be higher, so it’s important for dealers to consider the unique needs of their business and have a strategy for their product mix. Some may choose to stock up on R-410A products now and then transition to new refrigerant systems at a later time. Others may choose to proactively convert to new compliant systems early on. 

While installing and servicing units, dealers may also want to consider participating in a refrigerant reclaim program for recovered R-22 and R-410A refrigerant. Lennox has teamed up with Hudson Technologies for the Lennox Reclaim Program.

Dealers can expect to see most 2025 refrigerant-compliant products hit the market this summer, ahead of the transition on January 1, 2025.

Proactive measures by Lennox and other HVAC OEMs have spurred the development of products that help mitigate safety concerns through integration of refrigerant detection systems across all HVAC systems. These systems are designed to dissipate a refrigerant leak if detected, ensuring safe operation and peace of mind.

What’s Next?

The next reduction in HFC usage is projected to be in 2034, allowing time for the industry to prepare.

With a growing number of states, like CaliforniaNew York, and Washington, developing their own regulations on low-GWP refrigerants, it’s important for dealers to remain aware of upcoming regulations, not only on the federal level, but also in the local areas where they provide service. By actively participating in shaping present and future regulations within local government and helping advance technologies, Lennox reaffirms its commitment to sustainability, innovation, and the well-being of dealers and homeowners.

Lennox dealers can access more details on 2025-compliant products, including introduction dates and phase-out plans for our current equipment by visiting LennoxPros.com.

Funny Photos

risk management corner

Lithium-ion batteries power everything from laptops and smartphones to power tools and vehicles with efficiency and portability. However, their widespread use comes with significant risks, as these batteries are causing a growing number of workplace fires.

Thermal Runaway Dangers

The convenience of lithium-ion batteries masks a potentially dangerous downside. A phenomenon known as “thermal runaway” can occur when improper use, storage, or charging leads to a cell failure within the battery. Once initiated, thermal runaway produces heat faster than it can be dissipated, potentially leading to explosions, smoke, and fire. The fires caused by these batteries can be challenging to extinguish, sometimes requiring thousands of gallons of water and posing the risk of reignition over subsequent hours or days.

Fire Prevention Strategies

To help mitigate risks, consider the following guidelines:

• Using Certified Equipment: Ensure that batteries, chargers, and devices are listed by a qualified testing laboratory, such as UL, and avoid low-quality aftermarket replacements.

• Adhering to Manufacturer Guidelines: For storage, use, and charging, following the manufacturer’s instructions can significantly reduce the likelihood of battery failure.

• Inspecting Equipment Regularly: Check batteries and devices for damage before use. Cracks, bulging, leaks, elevated temperatures, or any indication of distress warrant immediate removal from service.

• Maintaining Proper Storage: Conduct all battery charging away from combustible materials, and keep batteries and devices in cool, dry places. Ensure charged devices are removed from chargers once full to prevent overcharging.

• Ensuring Safe Disposal: Damaged batteries should be placed in a fire-resistant container away from combustibles and disposed of in accordance with instructions from a battery recycling center.

By fostering a culture of safety and awareness around the potential hazards of these batteries, you can play an important role in minimizing risks and ensuring a safer work environment for everyone.