Though it’s not compulsory for every person working in HVAC industry to be certified but, if a person wants to become a HVAC technician or mechanic, it’s certainly required. Apart from being trained on heating, vents and air conditioning units, people with HVAC certification also have the qualification to work in the refrigeration field. They can gain expertise in large-scale projects like commercial refrigeration units. The primary requirement for becoming a certified HVAC technician is that the aspirant should attend classes and should have cleared a state-mandated certification test.
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Benefits of a Certified HVAC Technician
A certified HVAC technician has various benefits over the tech who has not taken the certification exam. It not only makes the person eligible for better pay packages but, also helps the person to gain expertise in some specific topics related to HVAC industries.
Individuals who wish to gain mastery in the heating aspects of the industry only need to obtain HVAC certification however, people interested in specializing in air conditioning and refrigeration need to have EPA certification. Certification proves to be very fruitful for those who wish to start their own business in HVAC as customers trust the certified providers more.
The first requirement to become a HVAC technician is to complete the HVAC training. The duration of the training programs lasts for six months to two years depending on the course. Certification or licensing of HVAC technicians is compulsory in most of the states of the United States of America.
National Certification Offering Agencies
For receiving certification in HVAC, the desired candidate needs to clear the state exam after the completion of the program tenure. The two most reputed agencies which provide national certifications are North American Technicians Excellence (NATE) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
The certifications offered by EPA are called CFC certifications. There are various areas in which EPA offers certifications which include working on small appliances, low pressure appliances and medium to very high pressure appliances. Most of the companies give appropriate job opportunities to NATE as well as EPA certified professionals.
HVAC certification classes offer training on all the topics however; there are many HVAC aspirants who choose to gain specialization in a particular area to be able to market their skills efficiently. It’s not only limited to marketing one’s skills to gain recognition as a specialist but, also to the general mental set up of the customer who trust a specialist more than a person with basic knowledge of all the topics covered in HVAC. The field of specialization also varies as some may be specialists in installation and others may have mastery in repairing.
Expenses in a HVAC Certification Program
The expenses for taking a HVAC certification program depends on the type of training program the person opts for. The type of exam and the state’s licensing fees also makes a huge difference in this. As per the data, the state exam fee ranges between $60.00 to $120.00 depending on the state and the city.
State Regulations for HVAC Technicians Differ
The regulations for HVAC certification also differs for different states. Some states have local certification whereas others recommend state certification. Apart from certifications, some states also provide licenses to the HVAC technician.
As per the rule, a person interested in becoming a HVAC technician who works with refrigerants requires a special testing for a license in refrigeration specialization.
It’s of utmost importance to keep oneself aware of the state regulations before opting for a HVAC training program from any particular state. Previous knowledge certainly helps as well as ensures that the aspiring person has chosen the right program offering the desired courses.
Apart from this, there are various online schools as well that offer HVAC training but, as most of such trainings are taken side by side with a job so, it becomes necessary for the aspiring person to take the regular classes for clearing the certification exams.