Answering EPA 608 FAQs

Any HVAC technician looking to make a career in the industry will likely be required to take an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) test that certifies their ability to safely and effectively deal with commercial refrigerants. Whether you’re planning on working with building air conditioning systems (EPA 608) or motor vehicle air conditioners (EPA 609), it’s important to find the right resource for EPA certifications.

Mainstream Engineering Corporation is here to serve as your online source for EPA study guides, practice tests, and certification services. We strive to provide quality instruction and guidance every step of the way. After handing out more than 600,000 EPA certifications, our company is confident that we can help you take the next step in dealing with refrigerant products.

While we’re happy to answer any and all questions, we commonly receive a few frequently asked questions that will be addressed in today’s blog post. Ready to get started? Contact us online or browse our EPA certifications to get started!

Who qualifies for EPA 608 regulations?

Businesses specialize in all types of HVAC services, making it important to understand when you fall under applicable federal regulations. The EPA provides a definition for technicians who qualify, including any individual who:

  • Attaches and detaches gauges and hoses to an appliance to read the level of pressure within that appliance.
  • Deals with refrigerants, including adding or removing products from an appliance.
  • Impacts the integrity of a refrigerant appliance, including motor vehicle systems.

It’s important to remember that apprentices are exempt from these EPA certification requirements as long as they are under the supervision of a certified technician.

How many types of EPA certification are available for EPA 608?

The Environmental Protection Agency has developed four key certifications, each specialized to give technicians ideal training and support:

  1. Type I – Work on small appliances (5 pounds or less of refrigerant)
  2. Type II – Work on medium-, high-, and very high-pressure appliances
  3. Type III – Work on low-pressure appliances
  4. Universal Certification – Any individual that possesses all three EPA 608 certifications

chart showing the tests required for different levels of EPA certification

What types of certifications does your company offer?

Mainstream Engineering Corporation is approved by the EPA to serve as a certifying agency, serving as your online source for EPA certifications. Our company can serve as a proctor for all four types of EPA 608 certifications, including Type I certifications online. Ready to get started? Check our website to find the right test, and sign up for your exam!

What about other 608 certifications?

In order to pass and certify for your EPA 608 beyond the Type I, testing will need to be provided by an approved proctor. Mainstream Engineering Corporation’s locator page provides hundreds of proctor locations for technicians across the country.

What does the EPA 608 test contain?

At their core, all three certifications focus on a few key impacts on refrigerants and our environment. You can elect to take our study guides online, which will center around the following topics:

Environmental Impacts

The dangers of both chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) and hydrofluorocarbon (HCFC) refrigerants make it essential for HVAC technicians to understand the big-picture dangers associated with improper services and disposal.

Clean Air Act

Harmful refrigerants are in the process of being phased out, and certain materials must adhere to prohibitive venting regulations. Technicians will be expected to understand the full scope and penalties of the Clean Air Act, as well as the effects of the Montreal Protocol (an international agreement to focus on phasing out ozone-harming substances).

EPA 608 Regulations

Section 608 provides a full range of requirements and regulations for HVAC technicians, including terms and definitions, equipment covered by each certification, reclaiming refrigerant, and more.

Refrigerant Substitutes

The dangers of utilizing incompatible refrigerants and lubricants in a building’s HVAC system can prove very problematic. EPA Section 608 tests on the complications of fractionation, mixing lubricants, and more.

Refrigeration Information

Understanding how refrigerant operates in different states is important in providing ideal HVAC services. You will be tested on the characteristics of refrigerant in both vapor and liquid states, as well as information pertaining to leak detection.

The Three Rs

The EPA has set strict standards to abide by, making it very beneficial to remember the three Rs of refrigerant:

  • Recovery — Proper recovery is essential for service, repair, and disposal.
  • Recycle — Technicians can clean the refrigerant to help protect the environment.
  • Reclaiming — Specialized machines can be utilized to reclaim refrigerant.

Safety and Recovery Techniques

Safety is the top priority, and your HVAC certifications ensure you and your team are up to speed on the dangers associated with this industry. You can expect test questions on pressure regulation and relief, personal protective equipment (PPE), and other safe techniques. Technicians will also need to understand the full recovery technique for HVAC applications.

EPA 608 tests ensure that HVAC professionals know the proper techniques needed to handle refrigerants in building applications. Are you ready to get started practicing for your EPA certification? Browse our website to begin, and contact us online if you have any questions!