Key information

  1. Reference: ST0322
  2. Date updated: 26/10/2023
  3. Level: 3
  4. Route: Construction and the built environment
  5. Regulated occupation: No

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Details of the occupational standard

Occupation summary

This occupation is found in the industrial and commercial contracting sector, providing installation, service and maintenance activities.

The broad purpose of this occupation is the installation of components, routine maintenance, reactive service, commissioning and decommissioning of vapour compression systems, as found in refrigeration, air conditioning and heat pump systems. This is a specialist role involving planning, preparing and safely carrying out activities in process, product and space cooling. Work is carried out in a variety of applications essential for key UK business activities such as food production, product distribution, retail storage and display, transport and office climate control, manufacturing processes (e.g. petrochemical, pharmaceutical), IT/data centres and medical/healthcare services temperature and environmental control. Knowledge must be transferrable between any of the core activities of refrigeration, air conditioning or heat pumps.

In their daily work, an employee in this occupation interacts with clients and end users, as well as liaising directly with other trades. Technicians will be required to travel to various locations to carry out their work at a wide variety of commercial and industrial premises depending on their client base.

An employee in this occupation will be responsible for working autonomously without immediate supervision, typically reporting to a service or project manager who is not usually on the site premises. They usually work as part of a team liaising with other technical trades.

Typical job titles include:

Air conditioning engineer Commissioning engineer Heat pump engineer Maintenance engineer Refrigeration technician Service engineer

Occupation duties

Duty KSBs

Duty 1 Plans tasks, taking into account technical diagrams, product manuals and refrigerant selection in accordance with standards, legislation and codes.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K19 K20 K21 K24 K26 K28 K30

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S14 S15 S19 S20 S21

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 2 Carries out site specific risk assessment and prepares for tasks ensuringselection of appropriate tools, equipment, PPE.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K19 K20 K21 K24 K26 K27 K28 K30

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S12 S13 S14 S15 S19 S21

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 3 Carries out component installation tasks in relation to vapour compression systems with due regard to the safety of those in the vicinity and the environment including pipework, jointing, component fixing and connection.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K12 K19 K20 K21 K24 K27 K28 K30

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S19 S21

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 4 Charges system with refrigerant, minimising leakage.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K19 K20 K21 K24 K28

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S19 S21

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 5 Performs commissioning activities to ensure efficient functioning including system testing (pressure testing and tightness testing) and performance recording.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K13 K14 K19 K20 K21 K24 K26 K28 K29 K30

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S19 S21

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 6 Completes system equipment documentation and hands over to customer.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K19 K20 K21 K22 K23 K24 K26 K27 K28 K29 K30

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S16 S17 S18 S19 S20 S21

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 7 Carries out planned service, maintenance, regular leak checks and recording aswell as reactive fault finding and repair of existing systems.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K15 K16 K19 K20 K21 K24 K26 K27 K28 K29 K30

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S19 S21

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 8 Performs decommissioning activities including safe recovery, recycling or disposal of refrigerant and other waste products.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K17 K18 K19 K20 K21 K24 K26 K28 K29

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S9 S10 S11 S12 S13 S14 S15 S19 S21

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

Duty 9 Work with other trades or equipment operators on site and communicates relevant information about appropriate use and interaction with other services.

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11 K19 K20 K21 K22 K23 K24 K25 K27 K28 K30 K31

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S13 S14 S15 S16 S18 S19 S20 S21

B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6

KSBs

Knowledge

K1: Health and Safety legislation and safe working practices applicable to working with pressure systems, electrical circuits and flammable substances. Back to Duty

K2: Industry codes of practice and standards, legislation and sources of information and advice applicable to working with pressure systems, electrical circuits and flammable substances. Back to Duty

K3: Environmental and sustainability regulations and guidance. Environmental hazards that can arise from vapour compression system operations. Environmental management systems standard. Environmental Protection Act. Environmental signage and notices. Types of pollution and control measures: noise, smells, spills, and waste. Back to Duty

K4: Principles of thermodynamics, gas laws, psychrometrics and fluid flow. Back to Duty

K5: Properties of refrigerant fluids and lubricants and their suitability for use in vapour compression systems. Applications and environmental impact. Back to Duty

K6: Refrigerant use: handling techniques and risk mitigation. Back to Duty

K7: Scientific and mechanical principles applicable to vapour compression systems. Back to Duty

K8: Function and operation of refrigerant system components and how they interact in vapour compression systems. Back to Duty

K9: Methods of maximising efficient vapour compression refrigerant system performance: heating and cooling loads, component selection and balancing techniques. Back to Duty

K10: Methods of working with gases under pressure, including brazing work and pressure testing. Back to Duty

K11: Vapour compression system operating parameters: adjustment techniques to mitigate direct and indirect carbon emissions. Back to Duty

K12: Installation of electric circuits, pipe work: positioning, fixing, jointing and testing techniques. Back to Duty

K13: Testing and commissioning practices and techniques applicable to vapour compression systems. Back to Duty

K14: Testing and commissioning practices and techniques of electrical and electronic control systems applicable to vapour compression systems. Back to Duty

K15: Routine and reactive service and maintenance practices and techniques applicable to vapour compression systems, including safe electrical isolation techniques. Back to Duty

K16: Fault finding, diagnosis and rectification practices and techniques of electrical and electronic control systems applicable to vapour compression systems, including safe electrical isolation techniques. Back to Duty

K17: Decommissioning techniques applicable to vapour compression systems, safe recovery and disposal of equipment, hazardous waste refrigerant transfer. Back to Duty

K18: Decommissioning techniques of electrical and electronic control systems applicable to vapour compression systems. Back to Duty

K19: Logbooks and diagrams applicable to refrigeration, air conditioning and heat pump maintenance activities. Back to Duty

K20: Environmental technologies employed in the sector: heat recovery, low GWP refrigerants, heat gain, cooling load and energy use equipment. Back to Duty

K21: Tools and equipment used in refrigeration, air conditioning and heat pump activities. Back to Duty

K22: Collaborative working, relationship management with clients and stakeholders and mutual problem-solving techniques. Back to Duty

K23: Communication techniques used with different audiences. Back to Duty

K24: Well-being: mental and physical health considerations in self and others and how to access support. Impact of mental health on the construction industry. Back to Duty

K25: Equity, diversity and inclusion requirements in the workplace. Back to Duty

K26: Documentation methods and requirements - electronic and paper. Back to Duty

K27: Project leadership techniques and principles. Back to Duty

K28: Planning, prioritising, work scheduling, workflow and time management techniques. Back to Duty

K29: Requirements for component warranty, legislation or regulation related to installation or other protections. Back to Duty

K30: Information technology: Management Information Systems (MIS), spreadsheets, presentation, word processing, email, virtual communication and learning platforms. General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Cyber security. Back to Duty

K31: Ethical and unethical behaviour, and the routes for reporting if unethical behaviour is identified. Back to Duty

Skills

S1: Comply with health and safety, regulations and standards. Apply safe systems of work, including carrying out a risk assessment. Back to Duty

S2: Comply with environmental and sustainability regulations and standards for example prevention of refrigerant emissions, segregate resources for reuse and, recycling and disposal of waste. Back to Duty

S3: Position, fix, joint and test, pipework and electrical circuits. Back to Duty

S4: Test, charge with refrigerant and commission vapour compression systems. Back to Duty

S5: Test and commission electrical and electronic control systems applicable to vapour compression systems. Back to Duty

S6: Interpret information and data from log books and diagrams. Back to Duty

S7: perform servicing, maintenance, fault diagnosis and rectification procedures and techniques on vapour compression systems including routine and reactive maintenance, installation of components and safe electrical isolation of supply. Back to Duty

S8: Perform routine service, maintenance, fault diagnosis and rectification procedures and techniques on electrical and electrical control systems applicable to vapour compression systems including carrying out safe isolation procedures. Back to Duty

S9: Decommission vapour compression systems, safe recovery and disposal of equipment, hazardous waste refrigerant transfer. Back to Duty

S10: Decommission electrical and electronic systems applicable to vapour compression systems. Back to Duty

S11: Adjust vapour compression system operating parameters to achieve reductions in carbon emissions. Back to Duty

S12: Maximise performance of vapour compression systems by determining heating and cooling loads and selecting and balancing components and systems. Back to Duty

S13: Retrofit and retro fill existing equipment to lower GWP refrigerants. Back to Duty

S14: Mitigate risks of refrigerants including environmental, toxicity and flammability hazards. Back to Duty

S15: Identify and use tools and equipment. Back to Duty

S16: Communicate with others verbally and in writing. Back to Duty

S17: Complete a customer handover. Back to Duty

S18: Work collaboratively with clients or stakeholders to solve problems. Back to Duty

S19: Apply project leadership techniques and principles. Back to Duty

S20: Use information and digital technology and comply with GDPR and cyber security regulations. Back to Duty

S21: Apply ethical principles. Back to Duty

Behaviours

B1: Prioritise health and safety. Back to Duty

B2: Act ethically. Back to Duty

B3: Take responsibility for work. Back to Duty

B4: Team focused to meet work goals, for example, work effectively with others, resolve issues in discussion with others. Back to Duty

B5: Committed to continued professional development (CPD) to maintain and enhance competence in own area of practice. Back to Duty

B6: Support an equitable, diverse and inclusive culture. Back to Duty


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