Reclaim Options Include Methods, Incentives

March 10, 2008
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Kevin Zugibe at the booth of his Hudson Technologies, one of a number of reclamation services exhibiting at the recent AHR Expo.

Once contractors step up their efforts in submitting refrigerants for reclamation services, they will find the reclaim sector of the HVACR industry more than ready for them.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has certified close to 50 such sources as capable of bringing refrigerant back to ARI-700 standards.

There are a number of processes to deal with refrigerant submitted for reclamation as well as various incentives for contractors to submit refrigerant to undergo such processes.

A number of companies offering reclamation services exhibited at the most recent Air-Conditioning, Heating, Refrigerating Exposition in New York City. From information gathered at the booths, here is a sample of some of the various reclamation options.

(A complete list of the EPA-certified companies can be found at www.epa.gov. The NEWS urges readers to directly contact any companies offering such services before making a decision.)

National Refrigerants had information that drew attention to how the industry got involved in, first, recovery and recycling and then reclamation as the industry’s response to directives from the Clean Air Act.

“In the case of refrigerant recycling and reclamation, the industry was given the opportunity to create its own business solutions to the new requirements. It responded with the startup of new companies and the expansion of existing companies to provide recovery and recycling equipment, recovery cylinders, refrigerant reclamation and banking services, analytical testing and disposal of unusable products,” said Jim Lavelle, technical sales manager.

He said the refrigerant reclaim business could be defined as “the collection, consolidation, processing, resale, and/or disposal of refrigerant which a contractor’s customer can no longer use.”

National noted that the company provides a wide range of reclamation services including a refrigerant banking program in which the company will hold (bank) a contractor’s new or reclaimed refrigerant at its facility for a monthly fee.

Refron said it had such options as a recovered refrigerant return in which used refrigerant is returned to the company for use or credit; a clean-up/exchange in which the company takes the used refrigerant, brings it to ARI-700 standards and returns it tested and certified; a stock-up option in which a contractor purchases new or reclaimed refrigerant now in anticipation of future requirements; and a banking program.

Reclamation services from Hudson Technologies were billed as a wholesale total reclaim program customized to meeting the specific needs of customers and includes purchase of cross-contaminated refrigerants, mixed refrigerant separation, and hydrostatic testing of outdated recovery cylinders.

Consolidated Refrigerant Solutions said it had a recovery cylinder exchange service. In the process, the company provides new recovery cylinders to contractors. The company comes to the contractor to restock empty cylinders.

There are also refrigerant disposal reports that are provided for record-keeping requirements of the EPA.

Publication date: 03/10/2008

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