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Old 12-31-18, 08:13 AM   #1
Xringer
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Default Refrigerator explodes

https://www.wptv.com/news/region-c-p...est-palm-beach


Are they using R290 (or similar) in home refrigerators now?

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Old 01-01-19, 06:11 PM   #2
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The picture in your link does not appear to show any sign of a flame front, though it seems unintuitive that a ruptured line would cause such catastrophic damage. Then again, a friend of mine witnessed what happens if you put one-can-too-much R134A in an auto AC system. He said it sounded like a large bore pistol when the hose from the pump ruptured.

I suppose a fast enough discharge would allow considerable pressure build-up before it blew the doors off that fridge. Even without combustion there would be saturated vapor and ice crystals suspended in the air. This seems to match the homeowner's description of the event.

R290 has been used in residential refrigerators outside North America for years. Its use is restricted by the amount of charge.

R22 can explode within a hermetic compressor if the system is not evacuated properly. I am looking for an article describing an HVAC accident that was submitted by a consulting engineer about ten years ago. I saved it on my old computer but, alas, I can't find it. The picture showed the remains of a compressor split like a banana peel. The coils are gone and there is a distinct fireball on the brick wall of the house. The service tech was seriously injured.
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Old 01-01-19, 06:49 PM   #3
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A nerd that I used to work with had a car AC that wasn't cool enough, and asked me for advice. Told him how to add refrigerant to the system, and told him to keep running the AC while he was doing it. Told him to go slow and not to add another can, after car was cooled off..
But, he (being a nerd) looked up the specs for the AC and measured the vent output temperature. It was out of spec. He wanted it perfect, and added can after can..
It was super hot (August) and he took the wife and new baby for a long ride down to the cape.
After they got stuck in heavy traffic, you can guess what happened..
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Old 01-02-19, 03:25 PM   #4
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EEEEeeek. I'll drink my beer room temp then.

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