WHY IS THE PHASEOUT HAPPENING?
HCFC's were identified as transitional chemistries by the U.S. E.P.A. to allow for a smooth conversion from CFC-based refrigerants and solvents, to materials that exhibited a smaller environmental footprint and a safer toxicological profile.
- HCFC-225, commercially known as AK-225 will not be allowed to be imported, sold or transported (as a liquid solvent) after December 31, 2014.
- HCFC-225 based formulations that are already packaged into aerosol cans will be allowed to be purchased and used until supplies are exhausted.
- The EPA is considering allowing the stockpiling of HCFC-225 products in pails or drums, which could be used to clean components manufactured after January 1st 2015. However, in most circumstances, the cleaned components would be susceptible to the requirements under the labelling law of the Clean Air Act. A final decision on the proposed stockpiling may not be known until at least the second quarter of 2014.
AK-225 had several formulations, each with a variety of broad and niche applications.
These solvents were 100% volatile, so most applications were performed using a vapor degreaser. The alternative solvents that are being recommended can be used in the same equipment, using the same methodologies.
Temperature settings and process times may need some adjustment, but a capital investment should not be necessary, as long as your existing machine is in good working order.