REFCOM

Ceilite is a Refcom Elite company

Businesses are re-inspected every three years to make sure they continue to meet the scheme standards. The three yearly inspection is carried out in the same way as the initial site inspection.


For members of the Building & Engineering Services Association (B&ES formerly HVCA) inspection will form part of the B&ES triennial Inspection and Assessment regime.


Businesses will be issued with a Refcom Elite company certificate which is valid for twelve months. Businesses will also appear on the public listing of Refcom Elite members on Refcom’s website.


Refcom Elite membership demands higher standards than those set out in the F-Gas Regulations and sets businesses apart from their competitors.


Refcom Elite membership proves to owners/operators that, following independent third party inspection, refrigeration or air conditioning businesses:

  • Can competently install, commission or maintain a system containing refrigerant
  • Are licensed waste carriers
  • Are compliant with all current legal requirements
  • Operate auditable procedures for the proper control of refrigerants and can account for all refrigerant used and recovered
  • Use appropriate, purpose-designed refrigerant recovery equipment
  • Perform refrigerant transactions with minimum emissions and are environmentally aware
  • Manage refrigerants safely
  • How does the Refcom Elite scheme compare to the mandatory F-Gas Certification scheme?

Application
Part

Detail

F-Gas
Certification
Scheme

Refcom
Elite
Membership

Part 1 Ensure sufficient numbers of certified employees/subcontractors engaged to carry out refrigerant management

Part 2 Ensure suitable tools and procedures are in place to carry out refrigerant management (sub-contractors via their own registrations)

Ensure company possesses waste carrying licence.

Ensure company has refrigerant movement audit in place with transfer notes.
 



Ensure company uses properly calibrated tools.  

Ensure company maintains correct records to meet user legal obligations of site based refrigerant log book.  

Ensure company meets ozone depletion regulations standards.  

Ensure company operates to approved industry Codes of Practice and good working practice.  

Ensure company operates health and safety policy and meets CDM requirements.  

External QA audit every 3 years to ensure obligations maintained for Parts 1, 2 and 3.  

All operatives registered with ACRIB SKILLcard on  

the Refrigerant Management Register or possess a blue/gold RAC occupational related Engineering Services SKILLcard.    

REFCOM - the register of companies competent to handle refrigerants in the UK.

REFCOMs’ mission statement is to recognise and safeguard the role of the employer so that they can be encouraged to operate entirely to industry best practice; for them to be environmentally aware and to operate entirely in compliance with current legislation; for their operatives to be suitably trained and competent to carry out their work in accordance with company procedures. The REFCOM scheme, is a set of high professional standards recognised by The Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Industry Board ACRIB and the RAC Industry.

Following the phase out of CFC’s and the current preparations for the planned phase-out of HCFCs, HFCs have become the most widely used refrigerants in the UK Air Conditioning and Refrigeration industry; their stability, non-flammability and energy efficiency being key in their advantages. With zero ozone depletion potential (ODP), HFCs are suitable for a wide range of applications either in a pure form, such as R134a, or as blends such as R407c and R410a.

These gases have a high global warning potential (GWP). However, this is only of concern if the refrigerant is released to atmosphere. Good refrigerant handling practice, ensures that this eventuality is kept to a minimum.

REFCOM standards are applicable to operatives using HFCs, HCFs & CFCs where still in use.

Legislation existing and incoming

The key pieces of legislation concerned with refrigerant emissions to atmosphere are:-.

Fluorinated Gases Regulation EC842/2006

The fluorinated gas regulation entered the EU official journal in July 2005 and became a mandatory requirement in July 2007. For equipment using HFC refrigerants regular inspections are now demanded along with more regulated leakage repair procedures and more accurate monitoring of refrigerant usage.

Ultimately, the end-user has legal liability in ensuring that refrigerant does not leak and is recovered properly during servicing and replacement of systems. Installer, maintenance contractors, equipment manufacturers or distributors of products containing HFC refrigerants are also affected.

Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS) Regulation EC2037/2000

Following the introduction of this regulation on substances that deplete the ozone layer, the regulatory position on refrigerants is as follows:

CFCs
CFC use was banned from 1 January 2001. Use is defined as use in the production, maintenance or servicing of equipment. Running an existing CFC appliance, without the need to top up with refrigerant, does not constitute use.

HCFCs

Use of HCFCs in all new refrigeration or air conditioning equipment produced after 1 January 2001 is now banned.

The use of virgin HCFCs will be banned in the maintenance of existing refrigeration systems from 1 January 2010.

The use of all HCFCs, including recycled materials, will be banned from 2015.

All operatives working on equipment containing ODS refrigerants must be certified competent by the holding of a safe handling certificate. This became law on 9th April 2007.

Prevention of leakage of ozone depleting substances

All precautionary measures practicable must be taken to prevent and minimise leakage.

During service and maintenance or prior to disposal, all ozone depleting refrigerants must be removed for destruction by an approved technology, recycled or reclaimed.

Non-ozone depleting refrigerants

HFCs have been identified as a greenhouse gas. Emissions must therefore be minimised by preventing leaks and stopping venting to the atmosphere.

Ceilite have been competent in accordance with the Requirements of REFCOM since March 2004, our registration number is 174.

To discover more about REFCOM click here