There’s a lot of red tape when it comes to the environment – especially when it comes to training your staff.
And when you’re running a workshop, it’s tempting to focus on the high-profile issues – like recycling, oil disposal, and proper waste management.
But there’s one area of workshop life that’s easily forgotten – and that’s the environmental effect of working with AC.
So if your company services vehicle AC systems, you need to be sure you’re staying compliant, with the right qualifications to back you up.
Here’s everything you need to know about F-Gas certification:
What is F-Gas?
F-Gas stands for fluorinated gas – a family of man-made gases that are used in a number of different industrial applications.
They’re most commonly used as a refrigerant in air conditioning units (which means a vehicle workshop like yours is bound to run into them at some point).
F-gases were created as an alternative to ozone-depleting substances. But while they don’t harm the ozone layer, they are still greenhouse gases (GHG) that contribute to global warming – and that means the use of F-Gas is tightly regulated.
So if you’re running a workshop that services vehicle air conditioning systems (or you manage your own fleet that needs AC servicing), you need to understand your legal duties – and the qualifications you need.
Why do I need F-Gas certification?
The short answer?
It’s a legal requirement.
When you’re dealing with systems that contain fluorinated gases (and especially when you need to recover those gases), there’s a risk that you could be leaking F-Gases into the atmosphere.
Those leaked F-Gases are a cause of global warming – and the release of F-Gases into the atmosphere is a criminal offence.
But there’s a little more to it than that:
Regardless of whether you leak any gases, it’s a criminal offence to work with F-Gases without an F-Gas certification – and you could face civil penalties if you don’t have the right people certified.
So who exactly needs an F-Gas certification – and what kind of jobs do they need it for?
Does every worker need F-Gas certification?
Every member of your team who works on F-Gas equipment needs an F-Gas certification.
That could mean working on Stationary Refrigeration and Air Conditioning (SRAC) systems, where they need to:
- Install, service, or repair systems
- Check for leaks or recover gases
- Decommission and dispose of old systems
- Or work on refrigerated trucks over 3.5 tonnes (or refrigerated trailers made to be towed).
But it’s not just limited to stationary systems. Your staff will also need F-Gas qualifications if they’re working on mobile AC systems. In particular, they’ll need a certification to:
- Recover refrigerant from mobile AC systems in goods vehicles under 3,500 kg
- Recover refrigerant from mobile AC systems in passenger vehicles with 8 seats or fewer.
So for any vehicle workshop that services AC units (or any company that services its own fleet), you’ll need to get the right people certified.
It’s not just a case of expertise or safety. It’s about staying compliant, protecting the planet – and avoiding legal trouble for everyone involved.
Does your company need F-Gas certification?
Just like with your individual workers, your company needs its own F-Gas certification to service Stationary Refrigeration and Air Conditioning (SRAC) systems.
That includes installing systems, repairing and maintaining them, as well as decommissioning old systems.
But when it comes to non-stationary systems, there’s a difference:
While your individual workers need a certification for mobile systems, your company might not need one.
Specifically, your company doesn’t need its own certification if you’re servicing:
- Refrigerated trucks and trailers
- High-voltage switchgear
- Or mobile air conditioners in cars and vans.
Your company might not need a certification for these jobs – but your individual workers will!
There’s a distinction between the requirements for a company, and the requirements for a member of staff. And if you want to avoid a civil penalty, you’ll need to make sure every worker has the right certifications.
Looking to get F-Gas certified?
If you or your company works with fluorinated gases, you need to get your teams certified – and that means you need training from a company you can trust.
We provide flexible and affordable training that helps you and your workers to stay legally compliant – and environmentally responsible.
But more importantly: we’ve designed our courses and assessments for busy workers – with minimal disruption or downtime.
Our Totalkare F-Gas Certification programme is delivered on-site at your premises and arranged around your workload, with an assessment that takes less than 1.5 hours per candidate.
So if you’re looking for a fast and effortless way to get your team educated and compliant, check out our F-Gas Certification programme online – or talk to one of our experts to find out exactly what you need.