The Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute has overhauled the colors that it says refrigerant containers should be painted.

In a revised guideline, the HVAC market manufacturers group said all refrigerant containers should be painted a light-green grey and other colors should be phased out within four years.

The group said that the many refrigerants now OK’d for use could lead to confusion by handlers. Over 50 percent to an AHRI survey said they had been confused as to the contents of similarly painted containers.

"Misidentifying refrigerants can lead to serious safety issues since refrigerants have different operating pressures and, in some cases, flammable properties," said Maureen Beatty, who heads the AHRI committee that handled the rule change. "It can also cause equipment damage if refrigerants are used in the wrong applications. Therefore, we decided the best course of action for the industry was to update the guideline to ensure that refrigerants continue to be used correctly and safely based on the required product markings and labels."

Full details are on the AHRI’s website.