How to choose a refrigerant vacuum pump?

How to choose a refrigerant vacuum pump?

Both novice installers taking their first steps in the industry and those who have some experience in the profession but are starting out on their own for the first time face a dilemma: how to choose a vacuum pump to meet all the requirements when working with stationary air conditioning systems.

There are several issues to consider when making this choice. Since vacuum pumps are one of the basic tools used by the installer of air conditioning and refrigeration systems, often used in harsh conditions and for many years - it is necessary to think carefully about the criteria that should guide their selection. In the following overview, we point out the basic parameters that we should take into account when choosing a vacuum pump, starting with the formal requirements and ending with its weight and dimensions.

Formal requirements for vacuum pumps

The f-gas regulations impose a number of formal requirements on personnel performing operations with controlled substances and refrigerants, including the need to have a whole set of specialized tools on their equipment, which must meet certain requirements. In the case of a vacuum pump, it is required to be able to achieve a pressure equal to or less than 270 Pa. So, when choosing this tool, check whether it meets this requirement.

Performance of a portable vacuum pump for air conditioning

Performance - this element will have a significant impact on the time we will have to spend on the procedure for drying the refrigeration system, commonly known as "vacuuming". The higher the pumping speed, the faster the process will be and therefore the efficiency of the entire installation will be higher. Here, therefore, we should consider whether a single-stage pump (which allows us to achieve a pressure of 0.02 mBar) or a two-stage pump (which allows us to achieve a pressure of 0.002 mBar) will suffice for our needs. A single-stage pump will be good for small A/C systems, but a professional should consider a two-stage pump, which is faster and allows a lower vacuum.

Unfortunately - in general, the higher the capacity of the pump, the greater the weight and dimensions, which in turn causes a deterioration in the ergonomics of work. Especially when we have to work with the pump in a hard-to-reach place, at height, on the roof - the greater weight and dimensions become a factor that significantly worsens working conditions. Therefore, you should always look for the golden mean between these two elements: performance and the size of the device.

The end vacuum generated - in addition to efficiency, is one of the key parameters to pay attention to when selecting a pump for air conditioning service. While usually the smaller and cheaper single-stage device allows achieving a vacuum of 150 microns, two-stage pumps allow achieving a final vacuum of 15 to 20 microns, which, of course, guarantees to achieve a much better cleanliness of the system before it is filled with refrigerant and thus guarantees a better and trouble-free operation of the air conditioning system.

Weight of the vacuum pump

Seemingly insignificant parameter, but which significantly affects the ergonomics of work. In a situation where you will have to climb a ladder to a scaffolding or the roof of a building loaded with a whole set of tools - you will notice how important this parameter is and how it significantly affects the quality of your work.

Additional equipment

Additional equipment in the form of a vacuum gauge and a solenoid valve has become standard on pumps currently available on the market. Observation of the vacuum gauge readings allows you to monitor and evaluate the progress of the vacuuming process in real time, while the solenoid valve prevents the refrigerant from backing up into the pump after it has stopped.

What brands of pumps are available on the market

Given the large and growing popularity of air conditioning systems, the availability and popularity of the tools needed to install and service them is also growing. Thus, there is a large selection of vacuum pumps from many manufacturers on the market. Among them are many brands that are strongly recognized for their great traditions, such as REFCO, ELITECH, MASTERCOOL, VALUE.

Vacuum pumps in the offer of

In our offer, every installer is sure to find the right tool for him - from single-stage pumps at a lower price and smaller size - suitable for the user who uses this tool relatively rarely, to two-stage pumps with high efficiency for the serviceman of large systems for whom the pace of work and the guarantee of obtaining very good parameters of the final vacuum are important.