HVAC technicians are currently experiencing excellent employment growth, particularly with the cold weather seen across the nation. One of the things that can help employment is HVAC technician certification. Learn more here.
Why is HVAC Tech Certification Important?
To become an HVAC technician, an individual is generally required to complete a training program and be certified. Most states and individual cities and municipalities require proof of some sort of training. HVAC technicians are often required to be licensed, which usually requires completing not only training but also having certification. Even if education or certification are not formal requirements, certification is a good idea. People in need of HVAC technicians won’t even consider an HVAC technician unless he or she is certified. Additionally, required or not, certification can really boost a resume and improve earning potential.
What Type of HVAC Tech Authentication Agencies Are Available?
HVAC technicians who have earned degrees in HVAC technology or successfully completed some sort of HVAC training are generally eligible for a variety of certifications. Below are some of the most common HVAC technician certification organizations. In addition to offering certifications, these organizations may also offer classes in areas of HVAC technology.
- North American Technician Excellence, Inc. (NATE) – This organization is the largest non-profit HVAC certifying agency in the U.S. NATE offers the certification in three specialty areas: installation, service and senior, as well as a couple other credentials such as the Industry Competency Exam (ICE).
- HVAC Excellence – This non-profit organization offers various HVAC tech certificates, based on the technician’s level of training and expertise. They offer certifications such as Heating, Electrical, Air Conditioning Technology, Specialty Certifications, Professional Certifications and Master Specialist Certifications, among others.
- National Occupational Competency Testing Institute – This organization offers four certifications for plumbing, heating, and cooling contractors.
- Refrigeration Service Engineers Society – This organization offers two levels of certification, as well as information on HVAC apprenticeships and training programs.
What Are The Requirements for Technical HVAC Certification?
Completing an HVAC training program at accredited schools is often the first requirement for certification. However, there may be more requirements. Each certifying agency may have their own requirements depending on the certification. For instance, before you can get a NATE certification, you must pass a core exam and an exam in your area of specialty. Once you’ve earned certifications, they’re usually good for 3 to 5 years. You’ll then need to be recertified, which requires completing some continuing education hours or classes.