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.
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.
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.
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.
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.