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Approved Filler and Approved Handler Test Certificate Training


Q. Why do I have to do a Filler and Handler certification when I am already qualified as a refrigeration technician?<

A. Under the HSNO Act, anybody handling or recovering compressed gases must have had suitable training and hold an Approved Filler and/or Approved Handler Test Certificate as appropriate. Most refrigerants currently used in New Zealand are classified as compressed gases under the Hazardous Substances (Compressed Gases) Regulations 2004 (Compressed Gas Regulations). Under these regulations, a person recovering compressed gas (refrigerant) into a cylinder must hold an Approved Filler Test Certificate. Some refrigerants currently used in New Zealand such as propane and butane are flammable and hazardous substances under the HSNO Act. Anyone in possession of more than 100kg (non-permanent gases) or 100m3(permanent gases) of class 2.1.1A substances must hold an Approved Handler Test Certificate.

Therefore, nearly all users of refrigerants are required by legislation to hold an Approved Handler or Approved Filler Test Certificate.

Q. Who offers the training?

A. Training can be provided by the RLTB (Refrigerant License Trust Board) or any other approved HSNO Training provider, see the EPA website for a current list of training providers. RLTB courses are offered nationwide with in-house training available. RLTB courses are designed for the refrigeration and air conditioning industry.

Q. Why do I have to pay a levy on all refrigerants?

A. The levy paid on refrigerants has been used to help support the Refrigerant License Trust. Development of course materials is a major expense.

Q. Is the levy compulsory?

A. The levy is the industries initiative to provide industry specific training and certification enabling legal compliance for all practitioners in HVACR industries.  Any practitioner can register for our courses because of industry support.  Development of course materials, training trainers, etc has been subsidised by the refrigerant levies.

Q. Is there a time limit to the certification?

A. Yes, the Test Certificates and License expire after five (5) years.

Q. What substances fall under the 2.1.1A category?

A. Click here for a list of refrigerants which fall into the 2.1.1A category.  However please check the Safety Data Sheets of the substances you are using to confirm their classifications.

Q. Are overseas gas handling certifications accepted in place of the Approved Filler and Handler Test Certificates?

A. Unfortunately, no.  You must hold an Approved Filler and / or Handler Test Certificate issued by an EPA approved Test Certifier within New Zealand.  These certifications are like a drivers licence, you must obtain one from the country you reside in, regardless of whether you hold a license from another country.

Q. Is my NZ Approved Filler / Handler certification accepted in other countries?

A. Unfortunately, no.  Please see question above.

Q. I have lost my License card and/or Certificate, how do I get a new one?

A. Replacement license cards and certificates can be prepared but will incur an admin fee: $20 for ID card only, $25 for ID card and Certificate, plus GST.  Contact RLNZ to organise this.

Q. Can I bring a Translator with me to the course?

A. Participants attending our Approved Filler and Handler courses must be competent in written and spoken English.  Participants need to be able to demonstrate that they can personally read and understand English written Safety Data Sheets, information contained on containers or cylinders, equipment operation manuals etc.  If participants cannot demonstrate this adequately they will not be certified as Approved Fillers or Handlers.  This is in the interests of public safety.  If a translator is necessary the level of English proficiency will be inadequate to meet the requirements of the course.  As a benchmark participants should have English language proficiency up to IELTS 5.5


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