SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA – Gabriel Carini, San Diego air conditioning and furnace service and installation provider, says that theft of air conditioning refrigerant is becoming more widespread.
Freon is one of many chemicals and poisons that can be inhaled, or huffed, for a quick- and potentially deadly – high. Because Freon is readily available and easy to access, people looking for a high are targeting HVAC units.
“The simple solution to prevent Freon theft is a locking refrigerant cap,” says Carini, owner of Carini Heating and Air Conditioning. The caps lock onto the access points. They can be found at hardware stores for less than $30. A Carini heating and cooling technician can also install them during a heating and air conditioning repair call, bi-annual unit inspection or system installation.
“The caps prevent children, teens or adults from gaining access to dangerous refrigerant fluid, and the owner from having to refill the unit’s Freon,” says Carini, the heating, air conditioning and ventilation expert.
Locking refrigerant caps are usually color-coded, tamper-resistant covers for the access points of all standard air conditioning units. The caps are installed by screwing them on, but they can only be removed from the air conditioners refrigerant lines with a special key.
In 2009, the International Mechanical Code and International Residential Code mandated that all refrigerant circuit access ports located outdoors shall be fitted with locking-type, tamper-resistant caps.
“One of our heating and air conditioning repair and installation experts can help you determine whether or not your unit is protected,” says Carini. Carini Heating and Air Conditioning is a fully licensed (#887621), bonded and insured company and gladly provides references of their work upon request.