Air Conditioner Repair Training Sterling KS

How to Pick the Right Heating and Cooling Certification Training near Sterling Kansas

air conditioner condensers in Sterling KSNow that you have come to a decision on a career as a heating and air conditioner professional, the next action is to choose an HVAC trade school near Sterling KS. But with so many to select from, how do you choose the ideal one to obtain the training that you need? A number of prospective students will make their choice based exclusively on the price of tuition or how close the school is to their residence. Although these are necessary considerations, they are not the only ones to evaluate. A few of the other details that you need to research are the graduation completion rates of the HVAC schools, their reputations, and if they are accredited by professional trade organizations. These and additional criteria will be covered in more detail later in this article. But before we tackle how to choose an HVAC vocational school, let’s look at what a heating and a/c contractor does to become a licensed skilled tradesman.

How to Become an HVAC Pro

Sterling KS HVAC Tech installing water heaterHVAC is an acronym that is widely used in the trade that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC contractors provide services for the installation, maintenance and repair of air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, hot water heaters and heating systems. As skilled tradesmen, they are generally mandated to be licensed, although every state and local municipality has its own prerequisites. Acquiring professional certification is not mandatory, but a voluntary means for Sterling KS HVAC techs to establish that they are highly proficient and knowledgeable in their area of expertise. There are several acknowledged certifications within the trade that are available. Following are some of the important ones.

  • North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally recognized certification for HVAC technicians. The certification is attained by passing a proficiency examination and may be received in one or more specialties.
  • HVAC Excellence. This certification offers both a professional and a master specialist credential. 2 years of professional experience in addition to passing a comprehensive examination are required for the professional level certification. Master specialists need to have three years of experience along with a passing score on the professional level exam. Similar to NATE, certifications are provided in various specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is necessary for technicians that work with refrigerants. There are 3 types of certification obtainable, one for small appliances, and the additional two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Because licensing may be required in your area, and you may also intend to acquire certification, it’s important that you select an HVAC trade school that will train you for both. And since you will more than likely be handling refrigerants, make certain that the school you pick readies you for passing the EPA Section 608 examinations.

HVAC Degree and Certificate Training Programs

radiator heater in Sterling KS homeThere are a variety of options available for HVAC training in a technical or vocational school. You can earn a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Acquiring a certificate will take the minimum period of time, often accomplished in just six months, though some programs are longer. A certificate will train you for the majority of HVAC positions, especially if you are licensed and have certification related to the position. The degree programs might provide a competitive advantage for securing employment and will furnish more comprehensive training than the certificate programs. Following is a brief summary of each credential offered near Sterling KS.

  • Certificate. Normally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are preferred among beginning residential or commercial HVAC specialists. They provide a strong foundation of skills for employment within the trade.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program delivers a more comprehensive understanding of heating & cooling systems than the certificate program. Usually requiring two years to complete, a number of degrees incorporate an internship or work-study program.
  • Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor’s Degree in HVAC is suited more towards a career in management as well as business ownership. Some programs require an Associate Degree, while others are a conventional four year program. In addition to learning how to service and maintain heating and air conditioning systems, you will also learn how to design them.

Selecting the ideal credential program will be based on what your future career objectives are, together with the time and financial resources that you have to invest. One option is to start with a certificate or even an Associate Degree program, and after getting some experience in the trade in Sterling KS, eventually returning to acquire a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your tactic, make sure to ask the HVAC technician school you are considering about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Online Training

Sterling KS student attending HVAC school onlineChoosing an HVAC school online is one possibility to obtaining your education and earning a degree or certificate. Most schools will call for some attendance on campus to take part in practical training. A number also offer internship or work-study programs in addition to or as an alternative to practical lab work. But since the remainder of the classes may be participated in on the web, this alternative may be a more accessible solution for many Sterling KS students that are pressed for time. And many online degree programs are more economical than other traditional choices. Even commuting expenses from Sterling and study supplies can be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And numerous online programs are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your job or family commitments have left you with limited time to attend classes, perhaps an HVAC online training program will make it easier to fit school into your hectic lifestyle.

Questions to Ask HVAC Trade Schools

Questions to ask Sterling KS HVAC training schoolsAs soon as you have picked the type of certificate or degree that you wish to obtain, either on campus or online, you can begin to decrease your selection of schools. As you are no doubt aware, there are numerous HVAC trade schools in the Sterling KS area and all over the USA to pick from. That’s why it is extremely important to have a list of key qualifications when making school assessments. As earlier stated in our opening paragraph, tuition and location will probably be the initial two variables you will consider. Following are some additional ones that you need to explore before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  Many HVAC trade schools in the Sterling KS area have earned either a regional or a national accreditation. They may receive Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to a specific program, for instance HVAC technology. Verify that the program is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting organization, which includes the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping ensure that you get a superior education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are in many cases not available for non-accredited schools. Furthermore, some states mandate that the HVAC training course be accredited for it to qualify for licensing.

High Completion Rates.  Ask the HVAC schools you are looking at what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage or portion of students who enroll in and complete the program. A low completion rate may signify that students were disappointed with the course and quit. It might also mean that the instructors were not competent to train the students. It’s also important that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader list of alumni, which may result in more contacts for the school to use for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only affirm that the school has a good reputation within the trade, but additionally that it has the network of Sterling KS HVAC employers to help graduates obtain apprenticeships or jobs.

Apprenticeship Programs.  A large number of HVAC vocational programs are taught in conjunction with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating trade and technical schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of Heating and Cooling companies or labor unions. Check if the schools you are reviewing have referring partnerships with local Sterling KS HVAC specialists. An apprenticeship not only provides a rewarding experience by furnishing hands-on training, but it also supplies job opportunities and helps to build relationships in the area HVAC professional community.

Modern Facilities.  Confirm that the campus facilities and the equipment that you will be instructed on are state-of-the-art and what you will be working with in the field. If you are currently in an internship or an apprenticeship, talk to the HVAC technician you are working with regarding what you should be looking for. Otherwise, ask a local Sterling KS HVAC contractor if they can provide some suggestions. Additionally keep in mind that unless you are able to relocate, the school needs to be within commuting distance of your Sterling KS home. Remember that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, besides the added moving costs there can be increased tuition fees compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s important that you get as much one-on-one instruction as possible, which can be difficult in bigger classes. Ask if you can sit in on some of the classes so that you can see how big they are and witness first hand the interaction between instructors and students. Talk to some of the students and get their feedback regarding class sizes and instruction. Last, speak with a few of the instructors and find out what their level of expertise is and what degrees or certifications they have earned.

Flexible Scheduling.  Confirm that the class schedules for the schools you are reviewing are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you are only able to attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Sterling KS, verify that the schools you are looking at provide those options. If you can only attend part-time, be sure that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Finally, find out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, sickness or family emergencies.

Considering an HVAC School near Sterling KS?

Perhaps you are considering enrolling in an HVAC training program in the Sterling Kansas area.  If so, you may find the following background information about the location of your new school campus both interesting and informative.

Sterling, Kansas

For millennia, the land now known as Kansas was inhabited by Native Americans. In 1803, most of modern Kansas was secured by the United States as part of the Louisiana Purchase. In 1854, the Kansas Territory was organized, then in 1861 Kansas became the 34th U.S. state. In 1867, Rice County was founded.

In the 1890s, Jonathan S. Dillon sold groceries at his general store in Sterling. Later in 1913, he opened his first J.S. Dillon Cash Food Market in Hutchinson. Later he expanded into the Dillons grocery supermarket chain.

Sterling is located at 38°12′38″N 98°12′16″W / 38.21056°N 98.20444°W / 38.21056; -98.20444 (38.210658, -98.204549).[9] According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.71 square miles (4.43 km2), of which, 1.67 square miles (4.33 km2) is land and 0.04 square miles (0.10 km2) is water.[1]

Air Conditioner Repair Training Sterling KS

Picking the ideal HVAC training program is a critical beginning toward a fulfilling career in the heating and air conditioning trade. You originally came to this website because you wanted more information regarding Air Conditioner Repair Training. However, as we have addressed in this post, you need to pick an Heating and Cooling training program and a degree or certificate program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the HVAC community. Other features to look for are sufficient hands-on training and state-of-the-art facilities. You should check out each of the schools personally that you are most interested in to tour the campus and talk with both the current students and faculty. Try to get a feel for the quality of the instruction and the interaction between them. In addition, ask about scheduling options and whether or not night or weekend classes are offered if needed. And remember to ask about financial assistance and student loan options too. If you ask the appropriate questions as we have outlined in our guidelines for evaluating schools, you’ll be able to narrow down your choices so that you can make an educated decision. With the right training, hard work and commitment, you can eventually become a licensed HVAC specialist in Sterling KS.

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