R-410A Certification FAQ


General Questions

  1. What is R-410A Certification?
  2. Are you required to have a license or to be certified to handle and purchase R-410A?
  3. Why is Mainstream's R-410A certification free when other companies are requiring payment?

Certification Questions

  1. Is R-410A Certification required by the EPA?
  2. Doesn't my EPA 608 Certification cover R-410A?

Updates to the Manual

  1. EDITIONS 1-13 - Text Correction
  2. EDITIONS 1-12 - What is the correct color for an R-410A cylinder?
  3. EDITIONS 1-12 - Reclassification of R-410A for Evaucation Requirements

Technical Questions

  1. What is Puron?
  2. Can R-410A be used to retrofit existing R-22 equipment?
  3. Do I need different service tools to work on R-410A systems?
  4. What type lubricant should be used with R-410A?
  5. Since R-410A is a high-pressure refrigerant, can I store it in the back of my service van like I did with R-22?
  6. Is R-410A a blend refrigerant?
  7. Is PURON different than R-410A?
  8. Is R-410A more toxic than R-22?
  9. Is R-410A more dangerous because of its higher pressures?
  10. If you have a leak from an R-410A system, does the entire charge have to be replaced, or can the system be topped off?


 

General Questions

  1. What is R-410A Certification?
    R-410A Certification is a no-cost certification offered by Mainstream to allow you to demonstrate that you have received additional training in the handling, servicing, and recovery of R-410A equipment.


  2. Are you required to have a license or to be certified to handle and purchase R-410A?
    You are required to have an EPA Section 608 Type II or Universal certification license to handle R-410A but no license is legally necessary for purchase. A refrigeration supply house may have its own rules regarding who they are willing to sell R-410A to (they will typically require Section 608 Type II even though the EPA doesn’t require it for safety and liability reasons).

  3. Why is Mainstream's R-410A certification free when other companies are requiring payment?
    Mainstream has reviewed many of the R-410A certification programs as well as the hype that goes along with much of the R-410A frenzy. R-410A is a high pressure refrigerant and therefore there are safety issues that technicians need to be aware of. R-410A is also a near azeotropic refrigerant, therefore charging and servicing these systems is different than other 400-series blended refrigerants. While we believe Mainstreamís R-410A certification training is the best training program available for learning service and safety issues related to R-410A, it is also the only free R-410A training program we know of. We donít charge for it because we believe if we charged for it, fewer people would take the training, and we feel this is training every technician should get due to the safety issues related to using R-410A. Therefore in summary, it is free so more technicians will get properly trained.

 

Certification Questions

  1. Is R-410A Certification required by the EPA?
    No. R-410A Certification is not required by the EPA however some equipment manufacturers require certification when handling their R-410A equipment to avoid injury or accidental damage.


  2. Doesn't my EPA 608 Certification cover R-410A?
    Yes. If you have used Mainstream's Section 608 self-study course, R-410A training is included. However our FREE R-410A Certification goes into greater detail and better prepares technicains to safely work with R-410A and R-410A appliances.

 

Updates to the Manual

  1. EDITIONS 1-13 - Text Correction
    The statement, "Cylinders can become over-pressurized for several reasons. However, the primary cause is overheating." should say, "Cylinders can become over-pressurized for several reasons. However, the primary cause is overfilling."


  2. What is the correct color for an R-410A cylinder?
    The color for the R-410A cylinder should be pink, not light gray as previously noted.


  3. Reclassification of R-410A for Evaucation Requirements
    The EPA has not formally ruled as to whether an appliance using R-410A is considered a "Very High-Pressure Appliance" or a "High-Pressure Appliance", however Mainstream has investigated the issue and has concluded that R-410A should be considered a "High-Pressure Appliance" and the evacuation of R-410A appliances should adhere to the requirements for all "High-Pressure Appliances"

 

Technical Questions

  1. What is Puron?
    Both Puron and Suva 410A are marketing brands for ASHRAE R-410A refrigerant. Puron is Carrier Corporation's brand name and Suva 410A is the DuPont brand for R-410A. Both have the same chemical composition and can be used interchangeably.


  2. Can R-410A be used to retrofit existing R-22 equipment?
    NO! Because of the much higher discharge pressure and cooling capacity, R-410A should ONLY be used in equipment designed specifically for R-410A.


  3. Do I need different service tools to work on R-410A systems?
    Yes. Because of the higher pressure, you should use manifold gauge sets designed for R-410A. In addition, you should use a recovery machine and recovery tanks designed for the higher pressure of R-410A. Recovery tanks should be specified as DOT 4BA400 or 4BW400.


  4. What type lubricant should be used with R-410A?
    A high-quality POE (polyolester) specified by the compressor or system OEM.


  5. Since R-410A is a high-pressure refrigerant, can I store it in the back of my service van like I did with R-22?
    Yes, as long as the temperature does not exceed 125°F. This is the same guidance given for R-22 and other common refrigerants. However, you must realize that on a hot sunny day, the temperature inside a closed van or truck can exceed 125°F, so if you are storing any refrigerants in your vehicle, don't let the temperature get to 125°F.


  6. Is R-410A a blend refrigerant?
    Yes. It is a blend of HFC-32 and HFC-125 (50/50 wt%) that performs very much like a single component refrigerant.


  7. Is PURON different than R-410A?
    R-410A is the same refrigerant whether it is called Puron, Suva 410A, Genetron AZ20, Forane 410A or Klea 66. Puron is Carrier's brand name for R-410A.


  8. Is R-410A more toxic than R-22?
    The safety and toxicity characteristics of R-410A have been thoroughly studied by reputable companies and organizations around the world. They have concluded that R-410A can be handled safely when the proper protective equipment is used and when appropriate safety guidelines are followed. These safety practices are very similar to the practices that have been used with R-22 and other HFC and HCFC refrigerants. There is more information on this in the R-410A manual.


  9. Is R-410A more dangerous because of its higher pressures?
    The pressure of R-410A is significantly higher than R-22. This does not mean that R-410A, or equipment containing R-410A is unsafe. It does mean that technicians must use AC equipment; cylinders and service tools have been re-engineered to handle these higher pressures.


  10. If you have a leak from an R-410A system, does the entire charge have to be replaced, or can the system be topped off?
    Since R-410A acts very much like a single component refrigerant, any change in composition due to a leak is minimal. The system can be topped off, without removing the entire charge. There is no practical limit to the number of times a unit can be topped-off or the refrigerant recovered from a unit. However, we do recommend that all leaks be repaired before topping a system off. Excessive superheat is an indication of low charge, and the possibility of a leak in the system should be considered.