Section 609 frequently asked questions

Below is a list of frequently asked asked questions regarding Section 609 certification and the new refrigerant purchasing rules effective January 1, 2018. The MACS office is experiencing very high call volume, please read through this list of common questions before calling the MACS office.

Q. What is Section 609 Certification?

A. Part of the U.S. Clean Air Act of 1990.

It is a federal law that since 1992 has required technicians working for pay to be certified to recover and recycle refrigerant. It restricted purchase of R-12 to certified technicians.

As of 1/1/2018, purchase of refrigerants of two pounds or more is restricted to certified technicians.

Q. How can I become Section 609 Certified?

A. The Mobile Air Conditioning Society (MACS)
Worldwide provides testing on our website at on our Section 609 pages.

The cost of the test is $20 per technician.

Testing is available online and  is the fastest way to obtain your Section 609 credential. It is also available as independent home study format . Training classes for groups can be arranged by calling 215-631-7020 X 304.

Q. What score is needed to pass the test?

A. A minimum score of 84 needs to be achieved to pass the online or home study open book test. Proctored closed book group test takers must achieve a score of 72.
The test taker gets two chances to pass the online or home study test. If the first test is failed a second chance test is provided.

Q. I am already Section 609 certified. Do I need to be re-certified?

A. If you were certified anytime since 1991 there is no required re-certification! Your certification is good for life.

However, in 2015 the Section 609 program was updated to include training information for working with R-1234yf.It is strongly recommended to re-certify to obtain this training if you plan to service R-1234yf vehicles.

Q. How can I get a copy of my previous certification?

A. MACS Worldwide can provide a reprint of your
Section 609 credentials ONLY if you were certified by MACS or IMACA. A reprint search costs $10 and you need to completely fill out a form for MACS to search for your record. This form is on the homepage of MACS website. A charge of $10 will be assessed for all searches of our database even if we do not find your credentials. 
If you were certified by another provider please contact that provider. 

Please do not request a copy of your certification unless you are absolutely positive you took a MACS  or IMACA Section 609 test.

If you can’t remember you are better served taking the test again.

Q. What does a MACS Section 609 card look like?

A. Older Cards will not say HFO-1234yf, very old cards say CFC-12 and do not say Section 609 and they are still valid. If a distributor disputes your card have them call the MACS office at 215-631-7020 X 0.

Q. I am in a rush what’s the fastest way to be certified?

A. Visit MACS website at and purchase and take the online test. As soon as you pass you can print temporary Section 609 credentials you can use until we mail your certificate and card.

Q. Are there penalties for not complying with Section 609 certification?

A. Yes and they are substantial as much as $40,000 per day. Please view them on the U.S. EPA website at this link.

Q. How can I become a MACS Section 609 Proctor?

A. Visit MACS website at and read the information about becoming a proctor in the Section 609 information. Fill out the forms and send them into MACS by fax at 215-631-7017 or email to

Q. How can I become a member of MACS?

A. Visit MACS website at and read the information about becoming a MACS member. Section 609 certification is not MACS membership. Members pay an annual fee for a specific set of MACS member services including the MACS diagnostic App for mobile devices. Join MACS.