And I thought that R134 was totally outrageous...... But NOOOO, it's been out done

Who’s in charge now?

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I have always found Scotty Kilmer’s videos to be as useful as breasts on a bull, and this one is no exception. I won’t comment any more on that, but back to your original question…

What did you find totally outrageous about R134a? There was the usual hub bub when it came to market in the 90’s but the systems were virtually identical and it has always been cost efficient. True, it’s not as efficient as R12 but most car systems work just fine with it.


That Dude is Super Sketchy


Scottie Kilmer…I watch him for fun sometimes. He’s kind of a whacko. But he seems to make some good points about the high cost, high operating pressure, and flammability of the new refrigerant.

A flammable refrigerant seems kinda sketchy too. Endanger humans in an effort to save the environment? Doesn’t seem like a good plan.

He’s entertaining. But R134 seemed like a shot in the dark. And it was introduced in a “take this and stick it ---------” program throwing the price of R-12 out the roof and in turn resulting in Butane being sold as R-12 at 1/2 price. A costly recycling machine was useless when dealing with possible contamination with flammables. My suppliers sponsored classes and tests to quickly get permits to buy and sell refrigerant but the cost to stay in the HVAC business took all the profit out the first summer. If I were still in business I might just leave AC’s alone for now.

In the future I suspect that fully self contained electric powered compressors in isolated units will replace what’s out there now.

That’s pretty much what is installed in Toyota Prius from generation-1, as well as wide-spread on Honda take on hybrids.
Probably it helps a little bit, but the system still has all the pipes, condenser, evaporator, etc… which were not made any more reliable by improving the compressor design.

kind of . . . ?! :crazy_face:


1234fu should be the name, Love Scotty!

Ok, fair point!

Oh, I dunno. I remember when it became a requirement to have an R12 recovery machine and that all the R12 manifold hoses had to have anti-discharge valves. That was an equipment expense before the R134 regulations. Then you had to be certified to buy automotive refrigerant, also before R134. Just progress, although it always seems to come with expenses to the local repair shop. Think of the dealerships that are required to have all the equipment to service new cars.

1234 equipment is kind of pricey now, but I think the market will find a way to lower costs.

AC refigerants are highly regulated because the gasses are believed to damage the environment. So capture equipent is mandatory as is licensing for those that service it. Raises the cost a bunch for both refrigerents and service so is it should not be a surpise that butane or propane is used instead.

Curious, what has to be done to clean out a recovery machine that is contaminated with butane?

Freon was developed to replace ammonia. An ammonia leak is pretty awful in a home just like a butane leak could be exciting in a car. Now we have R1234. Brings the excitement right back!

@Mustangman 's mention of Ammonia just made me ponder why industry never used it in the Automotive world… Perhaps because its not a “friendly” substance, but which ones actually are in the real world.

I mean if you think about it… we could have A/C without any power robbing compressors… Just use the waste heat from the exhaust manifold to do the work. Like the old Natural Gas refrigerators?

Maybe the exhaust isn’t hot enough? I dunno… just has me thinking…also thinking about how nasty Hot Ammonia would be in an auto accident…it surely wouldn’t play well with others in that scenario.

OK, thinking time is over…back to Auto pilot

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I’m thankful I won’t be involved with the R1234 excitement.

Looking back on the R-12 problem it amazed me that practical regulations weren’t taken to deal with the problem. When it was determined that freon was a significant cause of the depletion in the ozone cover that product was used in aerosols from deoderants to household cleaners to glass chillers and sold to DIYers in 14oz cans for 69c. If freon had been restricted to be sold only in bulk to licensed and qualified shops the problem might have been eliminated easily 40 years ago.


As far as I’m concerned this guy reminds me of Prof. Harold Hill from the Music Man, “We got trouble, right here in River City…”

According to Wikipedia,3,3,3-Tetrafluoropropene "The bottom line is this: The refrigerant will burn, but it takes a lot of heat to ignite it and it burns slowly. Almost every other fluid under the hood will light more easily and burn hotter than R1234yf…"

Sounds like fire belching from your air vents would be pretty low on the risks associated with lighting up that Marlboro

“If you ask me (unqualified ignorant opinion about science)”

No one asked you. If we want to know about science, we will ask an actual scientist, not an ignoramus. Get back under your rock.

I do like how he says R134a is “virtually inflammable.”



And let’s not forget that you are also driving around with 15-30 gallons of gasoline sloshing around under the back seat or under the bed that is delivered to the engine under high pressure.

I’ve been told by an EMT that the biggest worry next to gasoline is the magnesium used in some subframes.

Not to forget the very, very, high pressure of the direct injection gas and diesel engines currently in production. Gasoline pressure to 5000 psi and diesel rail pressures over 30,000 psi.

Imagine a fine leak in one of those systems over a hot engine.

With millions of automobile collisions each year that refrigerant goes up in the air when the condenser is damaged.

I do imagine those leaks… rather often. In a past life, while training to service metal cutting water jet machines. It was instilled in us rather quickly that if the “whip” the long stainless steel tube that powered the jet nozzle sprung a leak…you need to shut the machine down immediately. It turns out that when you pressurize fuel, water or whatnot to very high pressures… the leaking substance can easily inject itself through your skin and directly into your bloodstream. You will then need to go to the hospital in short order…if you are lucky to make it there at all.

Yikes. No thanks, I shall pass on the direct injection of diesel into my circulatory system thank you very much.

Granted it would be difficult to get into this situation with a vehicle, but…I know some stupid people man…you turn your back on some of them sometimes and you never know what they may get into.

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