PCB Requirements

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Appendix A
Specific Requirements for PCB and
PCB-Contaminated Equipment

Transformers

Most transformers containing polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) may continue to be used for their remaining useful (active) or normal lives. There are, however, a number of exceptions where PCB Transformers (containing 500 ppm or more PCBs) are prohibited:

bulletThe use or storage of PCB Transformers is prohibited in any location where human food or animal feed products could be exposed to PCBs released from the Transformer.
bulletCombustible materials may not be stored within 5 m (16.4 ft) of a PCB-Transformer enclosure.
bulletUse of higher, secondary-voltage (480 V or greater), network PCB Transformers in or near commercial buildings is prohibited. Existing transformers may be reclassified.
bulletHigher, secondary-voltage (480 V or greater), radial PCB Transformers used in or near commercial buildings must be equipped with electrical protection to avoid transformer ruptures caused by high-current faults and those caused by sustained, low-current faults.
bulletLower, secondary-voltage (less than 480 V), network PCB Transformers that are not located in sidewalk vaults must be equipped with electrical protection to avoid transformer ruptures caused by high-current faults, or they must be removed from service. These Transformers must also be registered in writing with the Regional Administrator of the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
bulletLower, secondary-voltage (less than 480 V), network PCB Transformers that are located in sidewalk vaults near commercial buildings must be removed from service.
bulletAll lower, secondary-voltage (less than 480 V), radial PCB Transformers must be equipped with electrical protection to avoid transformer ruptures from sustained, high-current faults.

Servicing of PCB Transformers is allowed with a dielectric fluid at any concentration. However, a PCB Transformer should not be serviced when the coil must be removed. This transformer should be disposed of properly.

PCB Transformers must be visually inspected quarterly for leaks. These visual inspections may occur any time during the periods of January to March, April to June, July to September, and October to December, as long as there are at least 30 days between inspections. More frequent inspections (monthly) are recommended. The PCB Transformer owner is responsible for maintaining records of these inspections.

No routine, visual inspections are required for PCB-contaminated Transformers, but it is recommended that these transformers be visually inspected quarterly for leaks.

All leaking transformers must be repaired immediately, or the transformer must be replaced. A leak must be cleaned up within 48 hours after its discovery. All active leaks must be contained in a drip-pan or by some other appropriate method. Daily inspections are required until the leak is repaired.

If a PCB Transformer is involved in a fire-related incident, the National Response Center must be notified through proper channels, and specific reporting and containment requirements implemented.

Capacitors

Large PCB Capacitors (containing 1.36 kg or more of dielectric fluid) that are located in restricted areas (either a restricted-access electrical substation or a contained and restricted- access indoor installation) may continue to be used for their remaining lives. Large PCB Capacitors that are not located in restricted areas are prohibited. All small capacitors may continue to be used for their remaining lives.

No routine inspection requirements apply to capacitors unless they are stored for disposal, but it is good practice to inspect them annually for leaks.

Most capacitors cannot be sampled for analysis of PCB concentration. In most cases, the presence of PCBs can be determined directly from information on the capacitor or from the manufacturer. (All capacitors are assumed to contain PCBs unless the label or nameplate information, manufacturer's literature, or chemical analysis states that the capacitor does not contain PCBs.) The Environmental Staff can assist in this identification.

Electrical Light Ballasts

The EPA allows continued use of non-leaking PCB and PCB-contaminated fluorescent light ballasts. When these ballasts are taken out of service, they must be disposed of properly as hazardous waste and are not to be sold to subsequent users.

Electromagnets, Switches, and Voltage Regulators

Most electromagnets, switches, and voltage regulators containing PCBs may continue to be used for their remaining useful or normal lives. The use or storage of a PCB electromagnet (500 ppm or more) in a location where human food or animal feed could be exposed to PCBs released from the electromagnet is prohibited.

Weekly inspections are required for electromagnets with PCBs if they are in use or stored for reuse and contain between 50 ppm and 500 ppm and pose an exposure risk to food or feed.

No routine visual inspections are required for other PCB or PCB-contaminated (less than 500 ppm) electrical equipment in use or stored for re-use, but it is recommended that this equipment be inspected quarterly for leaks.

Other PCB Equipment

Strict regulations apply to the use of PCBs in equipment which may not be totally enclosed. Examples of such equipment include hydraulic systems, heat-transfer systems, and compressors. Generally, this equipment requires annual testing and fluid replacement to reduce PCB levels to less than 50 ppm. Small quantities of PCBs used in equipment during research or used in optical liquids may have less stringent requirements. Contact your Environmental Staff for information on applicable regulations.

This page was updated on 01/04/07

 

 

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Contact information:
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Table of Contents for Environmental Health & Safety Online for EHS Professionals http://www.ehso.com/contents.php
Environmental and safety services for business - training, consulting, assessments, ISO14000, report and permit preparations and expert testimony. http://www.ehso.com/EHSservices/enviserv.htm
EHSO is looking for environmental and safety service providers, such as trainers, consultants, CIH's, etc., anywhere in the United States to provide their services to our site visitors.  Write us for more information. Email: or click on feedback

How to get help on your questions
Copyright 2013 Benivia, LLC (dba EHSO) All rights reserved.

 

Contact information:
Environmental Health & Safety Online
EHSO, Inc., 8400 Roswell Rd., Atlanta, GA 30350

Table of Contents for Environmental Health & Safety Online for EHS Professionals http://www.ehso.com/contents.php
Environmental and safety services for business - training, consulting, assessments, ISO14000, report and permit preparations and expert testimony. http://www.ehso.com/EHSservices/enviserv.htm
EHSO is looking for environmental and safety service providers, such as trainers, consultants, CIH's, etc., anywhere in the United States to provide their services to our site visitors.  Write us for more information. Email: or click on feedback

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Copyright 2013 Benivia, LLC (dba EHSO) All rights reserved.

 

Contact information:
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EHSO, Inc., 8400 Roswell Rd., Atlanta, GA 30350

Table of Contents for Environmental Health & Safety Online for EHS Professionals http://www.ehso.com/contents.php
Environmental and safety services for business - training, consulting, assessments, ISO14000, report and permit preparations and expert testimony. http://www.ehso.com/EHSservices/enviserv.htm
EHSO is looking for environmental and safety service providers, such as trainers, consultants, CIH's, etc., anywhere in the United States to provide their services to our site visitors.  Write us for more information. Email: or click on feedback

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Copyright 2013 Benivia, LLC (dba EHSO) All rights reserved.

 

Contact information:
Environmental Health & Safety Online
EHSO, Inc., 8400 Roswell Rd., Atlanta, GA 30350

Table of Contents for Environmental Health & Safety Online for EHS Professionals http://www.ehso.com/contents.php
Environmental and safety services for business - training, consulting, assessments, ISO14000, report and permit preparations and expert testimony. http://www.ehso.com/EHSservices/enviserv.htm
EHSO is looking for environmental and safety service providers, such as trainers, consultants, CIH's, etc., anywhere in the United States to provide their services to our site visitors.  Write us for more information. Email: or click on feedback

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Copyright 2013 Benivia, LLC (dba EHSO) All rights reserved.