How To Get HVAC Certified
Whether you want to find out more about how to become an HVAC technician or are already an apprentice, journeyman or trade school student, you should be familiar with how to get HVAC certified. The Environmental Protection Agency and the North American Technician Excellence Program are the two major certifying organizations for heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration professionals in the United States. Prepare to refine your skills by studying for and passing an EPA or NATE certification examination.
What is HVAC Certification?
HVAC certification indicates that HVAC professionals have the knowledge and skills to perform heating, ventilation, air conditioning or refrigeration installation or repair. When it comes to how to get HVAC certified, the general method involves seeking federal certification and any state credentials required to work with refrigerant. Specialist certifications call for further training.
How Long is HVAC School?
The answer to how long is HVAC training depends entirely on the program. The minimum requirements for HVAC certification often include a high school diploma or GED equivalent followed by completion of an apprenticeship or trade school program. This training should meet the qualifications for journeyman-level permission to work. If you want to learn how to get HVAC certified while working for an HVAC company or operating a service, consider studying for and passing the examinations.
Find the Right Program
There are many ways to pursue training in HVAC installation, maintenance and repair. You may want to enter an apprenticeship, enroll in a trade school or pursue training for EPA or NATE certification. If your primary concern regarding how long is HVAC school is whether or not you can work during training, check state requirements before selecting a training program.
Standard Certification Requirements
The only federal HVAC certification requirement is EPA Section 608 HVAC Technician Certification. As far as how to get HVAC certified, this program offers a choice of specializations in small appliances, high pressure systems, low pressure systems or universal certification. Additional requirements may be necessary depending on the state where you intend to pursue licensing and work.
Areas of Specialization
The EPA and NATE are the two major HVAC industry certifications. The EPA maintains the mandatory federal Section 608 Technician Certification standard. You must hold this credential if your work involves refrigerant gas.
There are four types of EPA certification. In addition to determining how to get HVAC certified, you should choose which appliances or systems you want to service:
- EPA Type I Certification for Small Appliances
- EPA Type II Certification for High Pressure Systems
- EPA Type III Certification for Low Pressure Systems
- Universal EPA Certificate
Pursuing EPA certification or specialized NATE professional certifications makes it possible to hone your skills and market to a niche group of customers. These courses and exams build on the basics of how to become an HVAC technician covered in an apprenticeship or trade school program.
Work Toward Certification
You may be able to start working and earning money while you are still a journeyman or completing training. Check to see how much HVAC training is required in your state. Another option is to take the NATE Ready-To-Work Certification Exam followed by the HVAC Support Technician Certification Exam after six to 12 months on the job.
Why Seek HVAC Certification
EPA Section 608 Technician Certification is necessary to install or service heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration equipment anywhere in the United States. Check to see if the state where you live has additional requirements for how to get HVAC certified. Current certification may be necessary to work for bonded and insured HVAC companies or to provide services in your area.
Prove Your Professionalism
Holding any EPA or NATE certification indicates a level of knowledge and professionalism that can set an HVAC tech apart from the competition. If your primary concern is how long is HVAC school, you may want to look for how to get HVAC certified through on-the-job training, study and passing exams.
Many clients seek out certified HVAC technicians and services. If you are not sure how to become an HVAC technician, pursuing an EPA or NATE certification can be an efficient and effective start to this career path. After you get certified, you may want to buy HVAC leads to grow your network.
Facilitate Bonding and Insurance Coverage
Insurers always work with certified contractors. In addition to getting jobs through preferred contractor networks, it can also be easier to bond and insure your own HVAC service. Attaining this level of professionalism is a major factor that motivates technicians to look for information about how to get HVAC certified.
Promote Specialized Service
One reason why there is no definite answer to how long is HVAC training is because technicians can pursue advanced specializations. Pursuing training in air distribution, heat pumps, efficiency analysis, gas or oil heating, hydronics or refrigeration may lead to electrician leads or unique opportunities.
How to Become an HVAC Technician
Journeymen and trainees usually qualify for more jobs when they hold current HVAC certification. In addition to asking how long HVAC school is, you should also consider the possibility of gaining practical experience and earning money while mastering an HVAC-related trade.
As you start planning how to get HVAC certified, you should also decide which credentials to pursue. In addition to covering EPA Section 608 requirements for how to become an HVAC technician, advanced study can give technicians the skills necessary for specialized applications. Certified contractors can attract more potential clients with HVAC sales leads on Billy.com.