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Standard for CFC-12 Recovery-Only Equipment

The supplemental final rule establishing a standard for CFC-12 recover-only MVAC service equipment under Section 609 of the Clean Air Act was signed by the Administrator on April 24, 1995, and published in the Federal Register on May 2, 1995, at 60 FR 21682. Unless stated otherwise, all provisions of the rule went into effect on June 1, 1995.

The rule provides for the following in relation to CFC-12 recovery. Standards for recovery of alternative refrigerants were included in the December 30, 1997 Final Rule.

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Appendix B to Subpart B--Standard for Recover Equipment

SAE J1989, Recommended Service Procedure for the Containment of R-12, as set forth under Appendix A, also applies to this Appendix B.
SAE J2209, issued June, 1992.

SAE Recommended Practice: CFC-12 (R-12) Extraction Equipment for Mobile Automotive Air-Conditioning Systems


CFCs deplete the stratospheric ozone layer that protects the earth against harmful ultraviolet radiation. To reduce the emissions of CFCs, the 1990 Clean Air Act requires recycle of CFC-12 (R-12) used in mobile air-conditioning systems to eliminate system venting during service operations. SAE J1990 establishes equipment specifications for on-site recovery and reuse of CFCs in mobile air-conditioning systems.

Establishing extraction equipment specifications for CFC-12 will provide service facilities with equipment to assure that venting of refrigerant will not occur.

1. Scope

The purpose of this document is to provide equipment specifications for CFC-12 (R-12) recovery for recycling on-site or for transport off-site to a refrigerant reclamation facility that will process it to ARI (Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute) standard 700-93 as a minimum. It is not acceptable that the refrigerant removed from a mobile air-conditioning system, with this equipment, be directly returned to a mobile air-conditioning system.

This information applies to equipment used to service automobiles, light trucks, and other vehicles with similar CFC-12 systems.

2. References

2. Applicable Documents--The following documents form a part of this specification to the extent specified herein.
2.1.1 SAE Publications--Available from SAE, 400 Commonwealth Drive, Warrendale, PA 15096-0001.

SAE J639--Vehicle Service Coupling
SAE J1990--Extraction and Recycle Equipment for Mobile Automotive Air-Conditioning Systems
SAE J2196--Service Hose for Automotive Air-Conditioning

2.1.2 ARI Publications--Available from Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute, 1501 Wilson Boulevard, Sixth Floor, Arlington, VA 22209.

ARI 700-93--Specifications for Fluorocarbon Refrigerants

2.1.3 CGA Publications--Available from CGA, Crystal Gateway #1,
Suite 501, 1235 Jefferson Davis Highway, Arlington, VA 22202.

CGA S-1.1--Pressure Relief Device Standard Part 1--Cylinders for Compressed Gases

2.1.4 DOT Specifications--Available from the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC 20402.

49 CFR, Section 173.304--Shippers--General Requirements for Shipments and Packagings

2.1.5 UL Publications--Available from Underwriters Laboratories, 333 Pfingsten Road, Northbrook, IL 60062-2096.

UL 1769--Cylinder Valves

3. Specifications and General Description

3.1 The equipment must be able to extract CFC-12 from a mobile air-conditioning system.
3.2 The equipment discharge or transfer fitting shall be unique to prevent the unintentional use of extracted CFC-12 to be used for recharging auto air conditioners.
3.3 The equipment shall be suitable for use in an automotive service garage environment as defined in 6.8.
3.4 Equipment Certification--The equipment must be certified by Underwriters Laboratories or an equivalent certifying laboratory to meet this standard.
3.5 Label Requirements--The equipment shall have a label "Design Certified by (company name) to meet SAE J2209 for use with CFC-12. The refrigerant from this equipment must be processed to ARI 700-93 specifications before reuse in a mobile air-conditioning system." The minimum letter size shall be bold type 3mm in height.

4. Safety Requirements

4.1 The equipment must comply with applicable federal, state and local requirements on equipment related to the handling of R-12 material. Safety precautions or notices or labels related to the safe operation of the equipment shall also be prominently displayed on the equipment and should also state ``CAUTION--SHOULD BE OPERATED BY CERTIFIED PERSONNEL.'' The safety identification shall be located on the front near the controls.
4.2 The equipment must comply with applicable safety standards for electrical and mechanical requirements.

5. Operating Instructions

5.1 The equipment manufacturer must provide operating instructions, necessary maintenance procedures and source information for replacement parts and repair.
5.2 The equipment must prominently display the manufacturer's name, address and any items that require maintenance or replacement that affect the proper operation of the equipment. Operation
manuals must cover information for complete maintenance of the equipment to assure proper operation.

6. Functional Description

6.1 The equipment must be capable of ensuring recovery of the CFC-12 from the system being serviced, by reducing the system pressure to a minimum of 102 mm of mercury below atmospheric. To prevent system delayed outgassing, the unit must have a device that assures that the refrigerant has been recovered from the air-conditioning system.
6.1.1 Testing laboratory certification of the equipment capability is required which shall process contaminated refrigerant samples at specific temperatures.
6.2 The equipment must be preconditioned with 13.6 kg of the standard contaminated CFC-12 at an ambient of 21 deg.C before starting the test cycle. Sample amounts are not to exceed 1.13 kg
with sample amounts to be repeated every 5 minutes. The sample method fixture defined in Figure 1 of appendix A shall be operated at 24 deg.C. Contaminated CFC-12 samples shall be processed at ambient temperatures of 10 and 49 deg.C.
6.2.1 Contaminated CFC-12 sample.
6.2.2 Standard contaminated CFC-12 refrigerant, 13.6 Kg sample size, shall consist of liquid CFC-12 with 100 ppm (by weight) moisture at 21 deg.C and 45,000 ppm (by weight) mineral oil 525 suspension nominal and 770 ppm (by weight) of noncondensable gases (air).
6.3 Portable refillable containers used in conjunction with this equipment must meet applicable DOT standards.
6.3.1 The container color must be gray with yellow top to identify that it contains used CFC-12 refrigerant. It must be permanently marked on the outside surface in black print at least 20 mm high ``DIRTY R-12--DO NOT USE, MUST BE REPROCESSED''.
6.3.2 The portable refillable container shall have a SAE 3/8 inch flare male thread connection as identified in SAE J639 CFC-12 High Pressure Charging Valve Figure 2. [[Page 21689]]
6.3.3 During operation the equipment shall provide overfill protection to assure that the storage container liquid fill does not exceed 80% of the tank's rated volume at 21 deg.C per DOT standard, CFR Title 49, section 173.304 and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.
6.4 Additional Storage Tank Requirements.
6.4.1 The cylinder valve shall comply with the standard for cylinder valves, UL 1769.
6.4.2 The pressure relief device shall comply with the pressure relief device standard part 1, CGA pamphlet S-1.1.
6.4.3 The container assembly shall be marked to indicate the first retest date, which shall be 5 years after date of manufacture.
The marking shall indicate that retest must be performed every subsequent five years. The marking shall be in letters at least 6 mm high.
6.5 All flexible hoses must meet SAE J2196 standard for service hoses.
6.6 Service hoses must have shutoff devices located within 30 cm of the connection point to the system being serviced to minimize introduction of noncondensable gases into the recovery equipment during connection and the release of the refrigerant during disconnection.
6.7 The equipment must be able to separate the lubricant from the recovered refrigerant and accurately indicate the amount removed from the system during processing in 30 ml units.
6.7.1 The purpose of indicating the amount of lubricant removed is to ensure that a proper amount is returned to the mobile air-conditioning system for compressor lubrication.
6.7.2 Refrigerant dissolved in this lubricant must be accounted for to prevent system lubricant overcharge of the mobile air-conditioning system.
6.7.3 Only new lubricant, as identified by the system manufacturer, should be replaced in the mobile air-conditioning system.
6.7.4 Removed lubricant from the system and/or the equipment shall be disposed of in accordance with applicable federal, state and local procedures and regulations.
6.8 The equipment must be capable of continuous operation in ambient temperatures of 10 deg.C to 49 deg.C and comply with 6.1.
6.9 The equipment should be compatible with leak detection material that may be present in the mobile air-conditioning system.
7.0 For test validation, the equipment is to be operated according to the manufacturer's instructions.

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