The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has proposed a one-year extension for VRF systems using high-GWP HFCs, so those HVAC contractors and manufacturers who have been worrying about the unsold inventory brought on by the AIM ACT, can breathe a sigh of relief. The rule, entitled, “Phasedown of Hydrofluorocarbons: Restrictions on the Use of HFCs under the AIM Act in the Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) Air Conditioning Subsector,” would narrowly amend a provision in the Technology Transitions regulation by proposing one additional year, until January 1, 2027, for the installation of new VRF systems that use HFCs with a GWP of 700 or more, provided the equipment was manufactured in the U.S. or imported before January 1, 2026. Specifically, the EPA stated that the proposed rule “would allow for pre-2026 condensing units, evaporators, and air handlers using R-410A, a blend of two regulated HFCs listed in the AIM Act, or other regulated substances and blends of regulated substances not meeting the 2023 Technology Transitions Rule’s restrictions, to be assembled into new systems (i.e., installed), so long as those systems are assembled prior to January 1, 2027.”

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