Threshold confuses F-gas compliance

Companies are failing to gain full certification in compliance with the F-Gas Regulations due to confusion over the 3kg threshold. According to certification body Refcom, employers working with refrigerants mistakenly believe that they do not need to hold a full company certificate if they work only on small systems below the 3kg limit. As a result, they are not applying for full certification in compliance with the F-Gas Regulations, despite the deadline for full certification having passed on 4 July.

Refcom Secretary Steve Crocker said: “This is a serious misconception that needs to be clarified. The bottom line is that the 3kg limit is only applicable to leak checking. A company undertaking installation, servicing or maintenance on stationary RAC equipment containing or designed to contain F-Gases (less than 3kg or not) must hold a company certificate. Failure to do so is a breach of the F-Gas Regulations.”

Sufficient qualifications

Businesses need a Company Certificate if they employ personnel to undertake installation, servicing or maintenance on stationary RAC equipment that contains or is designed to contain F-Gases, regardless of the equipment’s system charge.

If personnel undertake installation, servicing or maintenance activities on RAC equipment (containing less than 3kg of F-Gas), the individual needs to hold a minimum of a category II qualification. The higher Category I qualification would also cover them for this work.

A category III qualification is not sufficient for any service and maintenance work on equipment and only enables the holder to undertake recovery activities on RAC equipment. A category IV qualification only enables the holder to undertake non-invasive leak checking activities on any size of system.

A Company Certificate is not required if only recovery work or leak checking activities are undertaken or for any manufacturing and repairing activity undertaken at the site of a manufacturer for stationary refrigeration, air conditioning or heat pump equipment containing fluorinated greenhouse gases. 

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