I'm a do-it-yourselfer who has three air conditioners that need to be maintained on the road. I have no interest in contracting-out my services to others. But I occasionally need minor AC repair items. As Murphy would have it air conditioning tends to break down when you need it most at which time it is nearly impossible to find timely service for my specific type of equipment. typical wait times for an appointment is one month which is not feasible when traveling. And even if you do find someone you're not sure they will do things according to the perfectionist standard you would prefer.

Therefore I studied for and passed the EPA 608 Universal certification. a certain major supplier with national coverage with the initials JS Supply in one state refused to sell me any supplies that might possibly be used to repair equipment. They said they would sell me any equipment just not supplies. I called corporate but received no response as to whether this was a national policy or not.

I would be happy to pay someone to do the work if I could find someone available and knowledgeable to do it relatively soon wherever I am, but long-term the most logical thing would be to maintain the equipment myself given the unique circumstances. That is it seemed like the most logical thing until the Absurd and unexpected response of a major vendor to the offer of purchase of their product.

how do I inquire whether a distributor sells directly to consumer without raising a red flag setting off all their alarm bells? I'm trying to do the right thing, and intend to be very conscientious about it.

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    I use JS but have a company account (not a HVAC company) all they asked for was my license. I would suggest you try to set up a cash account in your home area I did this years ago with another company just told them where I worked plus my license number and after that I could purchase at all there locations. The other option is purchasing over the internet but that takes time that you may not have on the road. I used to love it when Costco had Freon all you needed was your license but my area no longer carries Freon.
    – Ed Beal
    Jul 20 '18 at 14:19

This is just an extension of Ed Beal's comments. I would defiantly set up an account with a vendor who has national outlets (maybe two) which usually allows you to purchase from any outlet. Unfortunately if a state has certain regulations that only allow certain vendors to purchase regulated products, there is not much anyone can do about it.

You have an unusual situation, but if you needed anything immediately the only other option would be to overnight from you home supplier.

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