The Freon in your air conditioning is responsible for keeping you cool and comfortable inside your home, but did you know that it can also be deadly? Teenagers all over the country are abusing refrigerants to get high, and many are dying or becoming seriously injured as a result. Why has this become so popular among today’s youth? Unfortunately, inhaling the gases in AC refrigerant causes a short-term high that is much similar to being very highly intoxicated. Lasting mere minutes or even seconds, the high is gone and undetectable by parents. What teens do not realize is that this high can result in death, even on the very first exposure. How can you protect your family and your Scottsdale air conditioning system? Find out what you need to know below…
How Is It Dangerous?
Considered to be a toxic substance, Freon is a chlorofluorocarbon used in aerosol products. When inhaled, it can remove oxygen from the lungs and brain, freezing these organs much like frostbite. Signs of frostbite may even be evident on the nose after exposure. Additionally, it destroys brain tissue.
What Is The Danger?
According to a report by the American Association of Poison Control Centers, more than 7,000 Americans reported exposure in 2010. Just one year earlier in 2009, more than 2,000 were hospitalized and 2 died as a result of this deadly practice.
How Are They Doing It?
While many teens simply inhale the gases as they are ejected from the unit, others choose to capture the gases in a plastic bag and huff from the bag. Both practices prove equally lethal.
What Is The Best Prevention?
If your system was made before 2010, there is a chance it uses R-22 Freon refrigerant. Fortunately, you can purchase locking caps which make access to the refrigerants impossible without the key. Available from your local air conditioning contractor, these caps can be purchased for as little as $25.
How do you know if your system has been used in this practice? One sign is low levels of refrigerant without the presence of a leak. Contact the Plumbing & A/C Medic today to inquire about a locking cap or to request service for your equipment. Please share this post to spread the word about this deadly trend and be sure to like us on Facebook for access to additional consumer alerts and company news.
1American Association of Poison Control Centers; https://www.aapcc.org/