Code Cycle: 2016 & 2019
Reference: CalCERTS Alterations Training Manual Chapter 9, Section 6
During winter months, when it is too cold to perform a standard charge measurement procedure, the Residential Appendices RA2.4.4 describe an alternate charge measurement procedure (excerpt below). If the installer completes the CF2R-MCH-25 using the weigh-in method, then the HERS rater may defer verification of charge measurement until a later date when it is warm enough to use the standard charge measurement procedure and the building department is allowed to close the associated permit without a CF3R-MCH-25.
Note: The CF2R-MCH-25 signed by the installer includes a declaration indicating agreement to return to correct refrigerant charge if a HERS Rater determines at a later time that correction is necessary.
If the alternate charge measurement procedure is used, it is almost certain that the permit will have been closed by the time the rater returns to complete the standard charge procedure. Therefore, HERS raters should consider collecting testing fees from the installer up-front and establish contact with the homeowner informing them as to when and why they will need to return.
The Registry flags projects with open CF3R-MCH-25’s to CalCERTS' QA department. If by mid-summer you still have open MCH-25’s then you may be contacted on those projects and/or QA may seek to get permission from that home-owner to use that property as a QA test on your work. If the homeowner refuses to allow access for you to complete the MCH-25, then inform QA with an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and include the project ID#.
Though the alternate charge procedure allows the rater to defer charge measurement until warmer weather, verification of all other measures associated with the project must be completed before the permit may be closed. This would include verification of minimum airflow requirements (MCH-23) associated with a refrigerant charge verification. If airflow remediation protocols are triggered, then the remediation steps must also be completed and may not be deferred.
RA2.4.4 - Enforcement Agency
If necessary to avoid delay of approval of dwelling units completed when outside temperatures are below 55°F, the enforcement agency may approve compliance with the refrigerant charge verification requirements when installers have used the Weigh-in Charging Method described in Reference Residential Appendix RA3, Section RA184.108.40.206 and have not used the Section RA220.127.116.11 option for HERS verification compliance. This approval will be on the condition that installers submit to the enforcement agency a registered Certificate of Installation that includes a signed declaration indicating agreement to return to correct refrigerant charge if a HERS Rater determines at a later time when the outside temperature is 55°F or above, that correction is necessary. The HERS Provider shall track these projects to ensure a HERS Rater conducts the required refrigerant charge verification for all such systems. When the outdoor temperature is 55°F or above, the HERS Rater shall use the RA3.2.2 standard charge verification procedure, or a procedure approved by the HVAC system manufacturer and Energy Commission for the refrigerant charge verification. The HERS Rater shall report the diagnostic results on the applicable Certificate of Verification, and shall register the certificate with the HERS Provider. When refrigerant charge verification testing performed by the HERS Rater indicates adjustment to the charge is required, the HERS Provider shall notify the installer, and the builder or building owner that corrective action is required. The HERS Provider may also notify the enforcement agency that corrective action is required. All air-cooled air conditioners and air-source heat pumps that utilize the Weigh-In Method shall be verified by a HERS Rater using one of the applicable refrigerant charge verification procedures. Compliance with HERS verification requirements cannot utilize group sampling procedures when the installer utilized the Weigh-In Method.