System maintenance: are technicians sensitive to environmental issues?

Several hundred European refrigeration equipment maintenance technicians responded to a survey published in the IJR. It It diagnosed their behaviour and knowledge of the impact of fluorinated gases on climate change. 

Last February, the International Journal of Refrigeration published the results of a survey (1) sent to more than 13,000 service technicians working with refrigeration equipment. 
Despite the low response rate (about 4%), the large initial panel allowed the responses of more than 500 Portuguese, Spanish and French technicians to be processed. 
The survey was conducted as part of a European project (KET4F-Gas) which includes a social study on the behaviours, knowledge and opinions of the different actors working with fluorinated gases. 

The survey focuses more specifically on technicians. 
The technicians surveyed mainly work on air conditioning equipment (81%), heat pumps (61%) and refrigerators (58%). The most frequently encountered refrigerants are R410A, R134a and R32. 
Only 10% of respondents indicated that they work with alternative refrigerants (HFO, hydrocarbons, etc.). 
The vast majority of technicians were aware of the impact of fluorinated gases on global warming (88% of respondents). 
About 20% of respondents proposed ideas to improve the management of fluorinated gases, such as requiring all new equipment to have pressure sensors. End-of-life waste management was also pointed out. 
The results of this study show that technicians are aware of the problems currently faced by the sector and are open to change.


The article is free of charge for IIR members in FRIDOC.


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