How To Become an HVAC Tech Crestwood KY

How to Pick the Right HVAC Degree Program near Crestwood Kentucky

air conditioner condensers in Crestwood KYNow that you have decided on a career as a heating and air conditioning professional, the next step is to locate an HVAC vocational school near Crestwood KY. But with so many to select from, how do you choose the best one to get the training that you require? Many prospective students will make their decision based exclusively on the cost of tuition or how close the school is to their residence. Even though these are important considerations, they are not the only ones to take into account. Some of the other factors that you need to investigate are the graduation rates of the HVAC schools, their reputations, and if they are accredited by professional trade organizations. Those and other criteria will be addressed in more detail later in this article. But before we examine how to pick an HVAC vocational school, let’s look at what a heating and air conditioning technician does to become a licensed qualified tradesman.

How to Become an HVAC Contractor

Crestwood KY HVAC Tech installing water heaterHVAC is an acronym that is extensively used in the business that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC professionals provide services for the installation, maintenance and repair of central air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, water heaters and heating systems. As professional tradesmen, they are typically required to be licensed, however every state and local municipality has its own criteria. Obtaining professional certification is not mandatory, but an optional means for Crestwood KY HVAC specialists to establish that they are highly proficient and accomplished in their area of expertise. There are multiple recognized certifications within the field that are offered. Below are some of the significant ones.

  • North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally recognized certification for HVAC techs. The certification is earned by passing a proficiency examination and may be acquired in one or more specialties.
  • HVAC Excellence. This certification offers both a professional and a master specialist credential. 2 years of field experience as well as passing a comprehensive exam are required for the professional level certification. Master specialists must have 3 years of experience as well as a passing score on the professional level examination. Similar to NATE, certifications are offered in multiple specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is mandatory for technicians that work with refrigerants. There are 3 forms of certification available, one for small appliances, and the additional two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Considering that licensing may be required in your area, and you may also wish to earn certification, it’s essential that you select an HVAC vocational school that will prepare you for both. And since you will probably be dealing with refrigerants, make sure that the school you choose readies you for passing the EPA Section 608 exams.

HVAC Degree and Certificate Classes

radiator heater in Crestwood KY homeThere are several alternatives available for HVAC training in a technical or trade school. You can earn a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Earning a certificate will take the lesser period of time, typically accomplished in just 6 months, although some programs are longer. A certificate will train you for most HVAC positions, especially if you are licensed and have certification related to the position. The degree training programs might provide a competitive advantage for securing employment and will provide more extensive training than the certificate programs. Following is a short summary of each option offered near Crestwood KY.

  • Certificate. Generally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are preferred among beginning commercial or residential HVAC professionals. They furnish a strong foundation of skills for job opportunities within the industry.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program delivers a more detailed background of heating & cooling systems than the certificate program. Typically taking two years to finish, some degrees feature an internship or work-study program.
  • Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor’s Degree in HVAC is tailored more towards a career in management as well as business ownership. Some programs require an Associate Degree, while others are a standard 4 year program. In addition to mastering how to service and maintain heating and air conditioning systems, you will also learn how to design them.

Selecting the right credential program will be based on what your long term career objectives are, as well as the time and financial resources that you have to commit. One approach is to start with a certificate or even an Associate Degree program, and after gaining some experience in the trade in Crestwood KY, subsequently returning to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your tactic, make sure to ask the HVAC tech school you are considering about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Online Classes

Crestwood KY student attending HVAC school onlineEnrolling in an HVAC program online is one possibility in obtaining your education and receiving a degree or certificate. Most schools will require some attendance on campus to take part in practical training. Many also sponsor internship or work-study programs in addition to or as an alternative to practical lab work. But since the remainder of the classes can be attended online, this approach may be a more practical solution for many Crestwood KY students that are short on time. And some online degree programs are more economical than other traditional options. Even driving expenses from Crestwood and study supplies may be reduced, helping to make schooling more economical. And many online schools are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your work or family obligations have left you with minimal time to attend classes, perhaps an online HVAC degree program will make it less complicated to accommodate school into your active lifestyle.

Questions For HVAC Schools

Questions to ask Crestwood KY HVAC training schoolsOnce you have chosen the type of certificate or degree that you want to acquire, either on campus or online, you can begin to decrease your selection of schools. As you are probably aware, there are numerous HVAC technical schools in the Crestwood KY area and throughout the USA to pick from. That’s why it is very important to have a list of key qualifiers when making school comparisons. As earlier stated in our opening paragraph, location and tuition will most likely be the first 2 factors you will consider. Following are some additional ones that you will want to investigate before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  Many HVAC technical schools in the Crestwood KY area have received either a regional or a national accreditation. They can acquire Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to a specific program, for example HVAC technology. Confirm that the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, for instance the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping ensure that you acquire a superior education, it can help in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs. Additionally, many 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 portion or percentage of students who enroll in and complete the course. A lower completion rate may indicate that students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It may also mean that the instructors were not competent to instruct the students. It’s also important that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive directory 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 will not only affirm that the school has an excellent reputation within the industry, but also that it has the network of Crestwood KY HVAC employers to help grads obtain apprenticeships or jobs.

Apprenticeship Programs.  A large number of HVAC technical programs are taught along with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating technical and vocational schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of HVAC contractors or labor unions. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have working relationships with local Crestwood KY HVAC companies. An apprenticeship not only provides a valuable experience by providing hands-on training, but it also provides employment opportunities and helps to build relationships in the regional HVAC professional community.

Modern Facilities.  Make sure that the campus facilities and the equipment that you will be trained on are state-of-the-art and what you will be using on the job. If you are currently in an internship or an apprenticeship, check with the HVAC technician you are working under regarding what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Crestwood KY HVAC contracting company if they can give you some pointers. Additionally bear in mind that unless you can relocate, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Crestwood KY residence. Remember that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, besides the added moving costs there may be increased tuition charges compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s desirable that you get as much personalized training as possible, which can be challenging in bigger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a couple of the classes so that you can see how big they are and experience the interaction between teachers and students. Talk with several of the students and get their opinions concerning class sizes and instruction. Finally, talk with some of the teachers and learn what their level of expertise is and what degrees or certifications they hold.

Flexible Scheduling.  Verify that the class schedules for the schools you are evaluating are flexible enough to fulfill your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Crestwood KY, verify that the schools you are considering offer those choices. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Additionally, check out what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, sickness or family issues.

Considering an HVAC School near Crestwood KY?

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

Crestwood, Kentucky

Crestwood is a home rule-class city[2] in Oldham County, Kentucky, United States just outside Louisville's Northeast End. The population was 1,999 at the 2000 census. CNN listed it as the 52nd best place to live in America in 2005.[3] It was first settled in the early 19th century and renamed Crestwood in 1909.

As of the census[6] of 2000, there were 1,999 people, 811 households, and 548 families residing in the city. The population density was 554.5 people per square mile (214.4/km²). There were 860 housing units at an average density of 238.6 per square mile (92.2/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 94.80% White, 2.15% African American, 0.35% Native American, 0.60% Asian, 1.10% from other races, and 1.00% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.15% of the population.

There were 811 households out of which 33.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.5% were married couples living together, 12.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.4% were non-families. 26.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.45 and the average family size was 3.02.

How To Become an HVAC Tech Crestwood KY

Finding the right HVAC training course is an important beginning toward a fulfilling career in the heating and cooling trade. You originally came to this website because you wanted more information regarding How To Become an HVAC Tech. However, as we have covered in this post, you should pick an HVAC school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the HVAC trade. Other things to search for are ample hands-on training and modern facilities. You need to check out each of the schools in person that you are most interested in to explore the campus and speak with both the faculty and current students. Try to get a feel for the quality of the training and the interaction between them. In addition, inquire about scheduling choices and if night or weekend classes are offered if needed. And don’t forget to inquire about financial aid and student loan options too. If you ask the right questions as we have outlined in our guidelines for comparing schools, you’ll be able to narrow down your choices so that you can make an informed decision. With the right training, hard work and commitment, you can ultimately become a licensed HVAC technician in Crestwood KY.

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