If you're going into HVAC, then you will be handling refrigerants. To do so, you will need to earn your EPA certification.
In preparation for your certification test, you will learn how to safely handle refrigerants and dispose of the tanks they are stored in. You'll also learn about their laws, rules, and regulations.
Learn the answers to many common questions about the EPA 608 by reading on.
How Many EPA 608 Tests are There?
There is one EPA 608 exam, but it’s given in four separate sections. The Core Portion, Type 1, Type 2, and Type 3. You must take and pass the core portion before you can take any of the other portions.
How Many Questions are on the EPA 608 Test?
The tests are all open book, but don’t let that fool you into thinking you won't have to prepare. You’ll still need to study in order to pass each portion of the EPA 608 test. Heading into the test unfamiliar with its subject matter will not end well. On the contrary, if you have studied, you should feel comfortable and confident heading into the exam.
Core Portion: The EPA test has 25 questions in the core portion. It covers topics such as ozone depletion, substitute refrigerants and oils, refrigeration, safety, shipping, and more. In order to pass, you must answer 18 out of the 25 questions correctly. You must pass the core portion before you can move on to take any of the next exams.
Type 1: This exam will test your knowledge on servicing small appliances. You’ll need to know recovery techniques, safety, and recovery requirements. It’s open book, and you’re required to get at least a 70 percent, or 18 out of the 25 questions, correct in order to pass. You must first pass the Core Portion before taking this exam.
Type 2: Your knowledge of servicing or disposing of high pressure appliances will be put to the test with this portion of the exam. You’ll need to be proficient in leak detection, which is one of the main subjects on this test. Refrigeration, safety, recovery techniques and requirements, as well as leak repair requirements are also subjects you’ll be tested on. You must receive a 70 percent (18 out of 25 questions) in order to pass. This test is in addition to the core exam, which you must pass first.
Type 3: Type 3 is about servicing or dispensing of low-pressure appliances. While Type 2 and Type 3 have major similarities, Type 3 concentrates on the low-pressure appliances, with the objective of the test being focused on leakage and leak-test pressurization methods. This test is also in addition to your core exam, and you need to answer 18 out of the 25 questions (70 percent) correctly in order to pass. You must complete and pass the core portion before you are eligible to sit for this exam.
Universal Certification: Once you’ve passed the Core exam, along with Types 1-3 (in that order), you’ll be awarded the Universal Certification. Becoming Universally Certified will allow you to work with all types of appliances and refrigerants, broadening your range of job opportunities.
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How Much Does it Cost to Take the EPA 608 Exam?
Costs will vary depending on where you live and where you take the exam. On average, each portion costs a minimum of $20. The Universal Certification can cost $150 or more. Test retakes can cost around $6.
Registration is done online. Once you’ve completed the necessary registration steps, you will receive an email with information on how to schedule your test date. Watch for the email; it will be sent within 24-48 hours from the time you register. The exam must be scheduled at least 72 hours in advance.
On the day of your exam, you will be asked to present your picture identification, which could be your driver’s license, state ID, or passport. You’ll also need your social security number, a ITIN or similar, as well as proof of your address.
The only items you’ll be allowed to bring into the testing room are your temperature/pressure chart and a calculator. Leave your phone in your car.
After you complete the exam, your results will be available immediately. An official certification will be mailed out to you the following day.
How to Get the EPA 608 Certification
To get the EPA 608 certification, you must take the Core Test, along with one or all of the following: Type 1, Type 2, and/or Type 3.
To become Universally Certified, you must pass all the exams. The Core Exam and Type 1 can be taken online, but Type 2 and Type 3 must be taken at a physical location.
Can You Take the EPA 608 Exam Online?
The Core and Type 1 exams are taken online and proctored virtually. Proctored exams mean the exam room is supervised by an official, approved agent. The proctor is there to make sure all the documents you are instructed to bring are correct, and that you are who you say you are.
The test is available online 24 hours per day, allowing you to take it anytime within that required examination session you’ll receive once you register.
When you register, you’ll be sent a link to a downloadable prep book. This will help you to study for, and take, the open book tests.
The rest of the exams—Type 2 and Type 3—must be taken at a physical location, which will also be proctored. There are no certification exams given online for those two exams. Check with your state board to find out where your testing location is.
How Long Does it Take to Get Your EPA 608 Exam Results?
Your test results will be available immediately after taking the exam. If you pass it, you’ll receive an official certificate in the mail. This will be sent from the processing center the following day. Allow a few days for it to show up in your mailbox.
How Long is the EPA 608 Certification Good For?
The EPA 608 Certifications never expire, so you’ll won't need to retake them. If your card is lost or destroyed, you may have to retake the exam depending on the circumstances.
If you lose your card, it is recommended you contact the place you received it from. They should have records of your test and will be able to issue you a new card without any issues. If, for some reason, that facility has closed, then you will have to contact a different facility. Having some sort of documentation or proof of verification that you did take and pass the exams will be beneficial in expediting the process.
If you don’t have any proof, yet you know the date you took the exam, you can call the EPA, and someone there should be able to help you.
EPA 609: How to Get 609 Certified
The EPA 609 Certification is required if you’re going to work on air conditioners in vehicles. You must have this certification in order to buy any refrigerants meant to cool compartments of motor vehicles.
This is an open book exam with 25 questions. You must get at least 21 questions correct in order to pass. Once you register for the exam, you will have access to a downloadable study manual. It is recommended you use it for taking the exam, but study it beforehand. If you fail the first time, you can keep retaking it until you pass. The initial test costs $20, and retakes will cost $5.
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