The search for alternatives to CFCs would seem to be winding down, with relatively few refrigerants on the market to replace such basic CFCs as R-12 and -502, and HCFC-22. But there are more than just those familiar refrigerants.
Right now, contractors and technicians probably aren’t consumed by the question of how much R-22 they'll be able to get when things start heating up this summer. But for many of them, the question is probably in the back of their minds. R-22 is a refrigerant due for eventual phaseout. According to EPA regulations, production has to be reduced by 35 percent beginning in 2004.