End of the line for clunker refrigerators - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

End of the line for clunker refrigerators

Scott Stephenson Scott Stephenson

By Jim Mendoza - bio | email

CAMPBELL INDUSTRIAL PARK (HawaiiNewsNow) - It's the power of stimulus stimulation.

Refrigerant Recycling is up to its compressors in old refrigerators - the castoffs from the new cash for kitchen clunkers program.

"It does have a life and we re-use it, every commodity in there," operations manager Scott Stephenson said.

Business is heating up for the Campbell Industrial Park company.

The federal government's recycle-rebate program began Monday. It offers $250 to consumers who buy energy efficient refrigerators and swap them for energy eaters.

Dealers have already sold thousands of new models. So Refrigerant Recycling is getting castoffs by the container load.

"I think that's our main concern, making sure that the cash for clunkers works not only from the consumer standpoint but also recycling the refrigerant correctly," Stephenson said.

Capturing coolant is at the core of the company's business.

It has EPA clearance to remove the gas.

It's put through a purifying process.

Samples are tested in a Texas lab.

Good batches are then bottled, boxed and stocked for sale.

"It is then re-sold to hotels, auto repair shops, commercial clients," Stephenson said.

Refrigerant Recycling expects to get thousands of old refrigerators from the Trade Up for Cool Cash program.

The company can process 200 refrigerators on a busy day.

"We're in Hawaii and we don't have a lot of space to dump these things. And you can't dump these because of the chemicals that are in the compressor units," Stephenson said.

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