Legal Requirements & Legislation
Owners of Air Conditioning Systems are responsible for ensuring that all units are regularly and correctly serviced and maintained. The necessary certifications also need to be obtained demonstrating that these requirements have been met and certified by a competent and qualified professional. It is a legal requirement that all air conditioning units are certificated and deemed safe and fit for purpose.
Legislation in England and Wales states that all air conditioning systems with rated out puts over 12kW require inspection within a period no greater than 5 years. This is regulated under the Energy Performance of Buildings (Certificates and Inspections) (England and Wales) Regulations 2007 implement Articles 7-9 of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD).
The following requirements should be met by the owner or operator of the air conditioning units that are in use:
- Arrange immediate repairs when necessary
- Prevent leakage of refrigerants and coolants
- Carry out regular leak checks
- Have a certified professional carry out inspections
- Keep up-to-date records of service history
- Annually for systems with refrigerant over 3kg
- Every 6 months for systems with refrigerant over 30kg
- Every 3 months for systems with refrigerant over 300kg
- Systems over 300kg require leakage detection equipment- halves frequency checking time
- Repairs made to leaks need to additionally checked within 1 month
- Record of quantity and type of refrigerant gases
- Record of refrigerant added or recovered
- Record and identify companies or engineers who carry out services and repairs
- Dates, results and reports of leakage checks
Use of the TM44 helps provide the relevant guidance on carrying out required inspections to air conditioning systems. It stipulates the length of time for checks, cost and skills, including specific details on advice for the user on a regular basis. It falls to the owner of these systems to assess how they will manage and comply with these rules.
In order to control the emissions from fluorinated gases the European Union has introduced 2 legislative acts which cover all the key applications in which these gases are used and those which use air conditioning systems. As the UK are members of the European Union these requirements have to be met.