Refrigerant R12: properties, characteristics, features

This publication will discuss refrigerant R12, properties, characteristics, and features of the refrigerant. For convenience, we have collected them in 2 tables. At the end of the article you will find R12 refrigerant diagrams.

History and application

R12 refrigerant was developed and used after 1935. It has been used in air conditioners, car air conditioners, refrigerators, freezers, etc. The characteristics of R12 gas made it possible to provide maximum cooling capacity. It is known by the names and trademarks of:

  • Freon 12;
  • R-12;
  • CFC-12;
  • CFC-12;
  • Freon 12
  • Halon 122;
  • Arcton 12;
  • Forane-12;
  • E940;
  • Genetron 12.

On September 16, 1987, the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer was adopted. was adopted. According to him, the world began to reduce the production of climate equipment for R-12. Since 1994, it has not been released at all.

At the same time, the production of R12 refrigerant does not stop. It is necessary for the operation of old equipment. But over time, it is modernized, changed to a new one, transferred to other refrigerants. According to forecasts, by 2035 the need for R12 will disappear.

Now more than ever, high-quality substitutes for CFC-12 are relevant. We suggest reading the review of R-12 refrigerant analogues. In it, we examined the most popular and effective replacements for it.

Representatives of countries that have signed the Montreal Protocol

Oil for CFC-12

For systems operating on R12 freon, mineral oils are used. Although the refrigerant is also compatible with alkylbenzenes. Here is a list of mineral oils compatible with R12:

  • HF 12-16;
  • Mobil Gargoyle Arctic Oil 155, 300;
  • Suniso 3GS, 4GS;

R-12 refrigerant analogues

Replacing R12 freon with other refrigerants is due to its price. Some equipment is better to upgrade, so as not to overpay in the future. There is no universal replacement for freon 12. For each system, you need to select your own, depending on its characteristics. Here are the most common analogues of R-12 freon:

Some manufacturers sell a mixture of freons R134a and R600a under the guise of R12. Their ratio in this gas is 50/50. It is mainly used in automotive air conditioners. When replacing, it is necessary to refine the system, namely:

  1. Complete cleaning and purging with compressed nitrogen;
  2. Replacement of seals;
  3. Oil change to semi-synthetic or synthetic;
  4. Sometimes – replacement of the filter-drier;
  5. Sometimes the compressor needs to be replaced.

Propane-butane mixture (PBS) is also popular. It has good refrigeration performance. depending on the ratio of propane and butane, you can choose the characteristics. But most climate systems also need to be improved.

What can replace freon R-12 in the refrigerator

There are two options for replacing R12 refrigerant gas in the refrigerator: with and without system modification. The second option is cheaper, but the performance of the refrigerator will decrease. To replace R12, you can use the following freons:

  • R406a;
  • R401a, R401b, R401c;
  • R409a, R409b.

Changing to R406a, R409a and R409b does not require an oil change. They are compatible with mineral and alkylbenzene (AB). Refrigerants R401a, R401b, R401c work only with alkylbenzene and synthetic oils.

Alternatively, you can convert the refrigerator to R134a or R600a refrigerant. In the first case, you will need to change the oil to synthetic. R600a freon (isobutane) works with mineral water. But when retrofitting the system, it may be necessary to replace the compressor. The person skilled in the art must determine this on a case-by-case basis.

Characteristics of freon R12, table

Characteristics R12Value
Molar mass120.91 g/mol
Liquid density at -29.8 °C1.486 g/cm3
Gas density at -29.8 °C6.25 kg/m3
Freezing point-157.7°C
Boiling temperature-29.8°C
Critical temperature+113 °C
critical pressure4.17 MPa
Critical Density4.789 mol/l
Heat of evaporation166.95 kJ/kg
Solubility in water at +20 °C0.286 g/l
Solubility in alcohol, gasolineSoluble
Distribution coefficient2.16
Steam pressure at +20 °C568 kPa
Magnetic susceptibility−52.2 10−6 cm3/mol
Thermal conductivity at +27 °C0.0097 W/(m K)
Ozone Depletion Potential ODPone
Global Warming Potential GWP8100

R-12 Temperature-Pressure Relationship

The table shows the relative (gauge) pressure in bar (atm). It is the difference between gas pressure and atmospheric pressure. For example, if the value P, bar = 1.007 , then the gas is at a pressure of 1+1.007=2.007 bar.

t, °CP, psigP, bart, °CP, psigP, bar


R12 refrigerant is in pressurized cylinders. May explode when heated. It is dangerous for humans because it displaces oxygen in enclosed spaces. Maximum allowable concentration by inhalation for more than 8 hours:

  • 4950 mg per cubic meter m.;
  • 1000 ppm.

When inhaled for a long time or in high concentrations, R12 freon is hazardous to health. Can lead to:

  • Respiratory disorders;
  • oxygen deficiency;
  • heart failure;
  • loss of consciousness;
  • Of death.

In case of contact with eyes, they must be washed with plenty of water for 15 minutes. If a person wears contact lenses, they must be removed. Water should be warm, with a minimum of impurities.

Skin contact with CFC R-12 may result in frostbite. Proceed as for any hypothermia. Warm the frostbitten area of ​​the skin by washing it with warm water.

If inhaled, move victim to fresh air. If there are respiratory problems, use the mouth-to-mouth resuscitation technique. If breathing does not return to normal within 3-5 minutes, call an ambulance.

Diagram of R12 refrigerant

Chart r12 Freon Forane
Refrigerant diagram Forane-12
Freon r12 chart

In this article, we have given the features and characteristics of R12 freon. You can ask your questions in the comments. Don’t forget to share this information with your friends and colleagues!

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