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Legislation & Refrigerants

Having spent the last… too many years to mention, working on Heat pumps and Air Conditioning, I found myself needing to buy some R410a.

I have not been on the tools for a while and never had the need to buy gas, I am F gas registered so no problem, much to my surprise buying gas was really easy, walk into the wholesaler asked to buy some R410a and no problem, no checking to see if I am F gas registered, so away I go thinking how easy was that (by the way I did know the supplier so he may have assumed that I am registered) it turns out that as long as you have an account with them you can buy gas, this is more for  tracking their bottles for rental purposes rather than any current regulations.

Moving on I needed to recover some gas, now this was a total different story, the same supplier couldn’t give me a recovery bottle without an environmental agencies carriers  licence, this in itself is something I, to this point hadn’t needed before, or rather didn’t realise I needed . The process was really simple, fill in an online form and pay a small fee, all sorted.

My point here is, current rules make it harder to recover gas than to buy new, this is the wrong way round, for example, if an unregistered ( let’s say,  basically any Tom Dick or Harry) wants to remove a system then reinstall, the hurdle to degas might mean they simply discharge the gas and buy new, to me it should be the other way round, it should be made easy to recover and reclaim gas and hard to but new or at the very least the same rules should apply! Recovering gas is also expensive, not only is it made more difficult it isn’t without cost, so to ensure we are all playing the same game we should all be registered for both reclaiming and buying refrigerant. In my experience the more barriers rules and reg’s the more likely people will try and avoid doing the right thing, but if you made buying gas more difficult it would prevent the wrong people installing and charging equipment.

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