F gases are fluorinated gases that include HCFCs, HFCs and CFCs used in refrigerated applications and equipment, including air conditioning.
Certain F gases have been proven to deplete the ozone layer, whilst others directly contribute to greenhouse gases associated with global warming. EU legislation has been put into place in order to limit the use of these gases, controlling how much F gas is released into the Earth’s atmosphere in an effort to protect the environment.
Legally, air conditioning installations and equipment that contain more than 5 tonnes CO2–eq, without a leak detection system, require leak checks every 12 months and with a leak detection system fitted, every 24 months.
If the system holds over 50 tonnes CO2-eq, without a leak detection system fitted, every 6 months and with a leak detection system fitted, every 12 months. Systems holding in excess of 500 tonnes CO2-eq, without leak detection system fitted, every 3 months and with a leak detection system fitted, every 6 months.
Checks for leaks and damage must be carried out by a contractor certified to work with F gases, of which Airtech UK is.
Owners of equipment that use and contain HFCs should, according to the legislation,
- Use qualified, specialist and appropriately trained contractors to repair, maintain, dispose of and service refrigerant and equipment
- Use any and all measures to help prevent refrigerant leaks
- Repair leaks as soon as they have been detected
- Recover refrigerant as necessary
- Hold appropriate records detailing the date of each leak, quantity and type of refrigerant added or disposed of and the name of the company and engineer who carried out the maintenance or service.
Airtech UK Ltd is approved and accredited by REFCOM and FGAS to carry out F gas testing. If necessary, annual F gas checks can easily be incorporated into a Planned Maintenance Contract.
Check out our blog on fgas law changes for more information here.