HVAC schools will feature certificate programs that will range from six months to two years in length. In order to work as a professional HVAC technician you will need to complete one of these accredited programs, work as an apprentice for two years and take a state licensing exam. Here we will find out what material is included in an HVAC training program, the degrees available and what the HVAC salary will look like.
HVAC Education Program Outline
An accredited program will teach students about the field of heating and air conditioning and will provide the student with a structured learning approach to the applications they will need to create and design new HVAC systems, retrofit installed systems and how to preform general repairs and maintenance. Once the student has completed a program they will need to take the state licensing exam in order to work as a professional in this field. The HVAC student will need to work as an apprentice for a period of two years before qualifying for a license. During an apprenticeship, the student will be compensated at half the wages of a licensed HVAC tech and will be required to work under the direct supervision of a certified tech in order to have the training tech check off competency lists regarding tasks the apprentice must successfully carry out in order to make a passing grade.
Online HVAC schools will offer the same courses as the in-class courses; however the student will have no assistance from the school in terms of finding an available internship. The online courses will allow the student to complete their coursework on their own time; however, most programs will give the student a time limit of two months to complete each section.
HVAC Degrees, Apprenticeships and Certificate Programs
In this field there is also the facilities management certificate course that will focus on teaching students how to maintain ventilation systems, perform proper HVAC practices, control installation and refrigerant handling and will require the student to have past experience working with refrigerants. The student will also need to have their own HVAC tools such as a tape measures, hammer, wrenches, pliers, tube cutters and thermometer.
The associate’s degree in applied science will teach students about controlling environments through cooling and heating ventilation techniques. The student will learn how to repair, install and maintain cooling and heating systems with the use of environmental gauges and tools.
The apprenticeship for the HVAC tech obtaining their associate’s degree will allow the student to gain field experience and require them to spend 144 hours of classroom instruction a year and a total of 3 to 4 years dedicated to a compensated apprenticeship.