Refrigerant Recovery

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  • Liquid recovers quicker than vapor.
  • Sub-coolers like the CPS MT69 & simple copper coils can cut recovery times in half! See (Figures 2 & 3).


EPA Section 608 prohibits the intentional release of any ozone depleting substance and technicians make good faith efforts to maximize the recovery and recycling of R-22. As R-22 buy back prices rise and replacing R-22 becomes more commonplace, using techniques that minimize recovery time will lead to greater pay-offs, both in reduced labor costs, reduced call-backs and increased retrofit margins.

Best Practices

  • Always use valve core removal tools to remove Schrader cores.
  • Always purge all hoses.
  • Maximize hose diameters as much as possible.
  • Minimize hose lengths as much as possible.
  • Use commercial/homemade sub-coolers.
  • Avoid using hoses with core depressors or quick release attachments if possible.
  • Recovery as much liquid as possible before recovering vapor refrigerant.

Additional Tips

  • A sight glass makes it easy to determine when all liquid refrigerant has been recovered.
  • Utilize inline filter driers to remove contaminants and increase R-22 buyback prices.
  • For large refrigerant charges (over 15 lbs), use direct liquid recovery or push-pull methods.
  • Ambient conditions can greatly effect recovery times.
  • Keep recovery cylinders cool with buckets & ice or wet rags.
  • When possible, utilize unit compressor to pump down refrigerant to high side for liquid recovery.


Figure 1. Appion standard recovery.

Figure 2. CPS MT69 Molecular Transformator.

Figure 3. Homemade Subcooler.