WASHINGTON-The Environmental Protection Agency will allow those who service auto air conditioners to use recover-only equipment to extract chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), according to a supplemental final rule issued May 2. Clean Air Act regulations require strict care in the handling of CFCs from auto A/C units. The original final rule published in July 1992 permitted only the use of equipment that both recovers and recycles CFCs.
Three months before, however, the EPA issued a supplemental notice proposing a standard for the use of recover-only equipment, based on a standard from the Society of Automotive Engineers. The supplemental final rule establishes the earlier proposal with only minor changes, the agency said.
The new rule probably won't make much practical difference to the average auto repair shop, according to Roy E. Littlefield III, government relations director of the American Retreaders Association.
``Most technicians would still use recover/recycle equipment, because it makes more sense economically,'' he said. Recover-only equipment benefits scrap yards where CFCs from wrecked cars' A/C units are removed and shipped elsewhere for reclamation.