Cold and Hard Facts Refrigerants Q & A- May 25, 2023

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Description automatically generatedQ: Should an HVAC Technician wear PPE when dealing with low GWP refrigerants?

A: Personal protective equipment should be used by firefighters and technicians.

Yes, an HVAC technician should wear appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) when working with any type of refrigerant, including low global warming potential (LGWP) refrigerants. While LGWP refrigerants are generally less harmful to human health than high global warming potential (HGWP) refrigerants, they can still pose some health risks if not handled properly.

The specific PPE requirements will depend on the type of refrigerant being used and the specific job being performed. However, common PPE items that HVAC technicians may need to wear when working with refrigerants include safety glasses or goggles, gloves, and a respirator or other respiratory protection.

It's important to consult the manufacturer's safety data sheet (SDS) for the specific refrigerant being used to determine the appropriate PPE requirements. In addition to PPE, it's also important to follow appropriate safety protocols, such as ensuring adequate ventilation, using gas detectors to monitor for refrigerant leaks, and properly handling and storing refrigerants to prevent leaks or spills.

By wearing appropriate PPE and following proper safety protocols, HVAC technicians can help minimize the risk of exposure to refrigerants and protect their health and safety on the job.

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