RectorSeal Corp., Houston, Texas, a manufacturer of quality HVAC/R products, has acquired the total assets of Novent Cap LLC, Yorba Linda, Calif., the originator of the Novent tamper-resistant locking cap for air-conditioning unit refrigerant access ports.
The March 15 acquisition, plus the recent development of its own GasGuard locking cap brand, positions RectorSeal as a market-share leading manufacturer for one of the HVAC/R industry’s fastest growing markets. Sharply increasing locking cap sales across the nation are being driven by the recent trends of teenage huffing deaths and black market refrigerant theft due to the inherently easy access of air-conditioning equipment Schraeder valves. The United Parents to Restrict Open Access to Refrigerants (www.uproarorg.org), a lobbying group of parents who have lost children to huffing, recommends Novent locking caps on its website. Locking caps also have an environmental impact as their O-ring seals minimize refrigerant losses due to leaking Schraeder valves.
Locking caps are currently required for new air-conditioning installations by the International Mechanical Code and the International Residential Code, however sales are expected to escalate in 2015 once a proposed IMC and IRC code mandate is passed to install locking caps on any existing system that’s opened during service.
Novent locking caps can be unlocked only with a unique key available to licensed air-conditioning and refrigeration contractors through HVAC/R wholesalers. It complements RectorSeal’s keyless GasGuard, which can be removed only with a proprietary socket tool. “Wholesalers and contractors now have the flexibility of an easy to install and tamper-resistant keyed or keyless locking cap, both marketed by a 75-year-old company with a reputation of standing behind the products it sells,” said Larry Kaiser, vice president, RectorSeal.