Learn HVAC Online Hardinsburg KY

How to Choose the Right HVAC School near Hardinsburg Kentucky

air conditioner condensers in Hardinsburg KYNow that you have come to a decision on a career as a heating and cooling technician, the next action is to choose an HVAC technical school near Hardinsburg KY. But with so many to select from, how do you select the ideal one to get the training that you need? Some potential students will make their choice based entirely on the price of tuition or how close the school is to their residence. Even though these are important factors to consider, they are not the only ones to investigate. Some of the other details that you need to look into are the graduation completion rates of the HVAC schools, their reputations, and if they are accredited by professional trade organizations. These and other criteria will be covered in more detail later in this article. But before we discuss how to choose an HVAC trade school, let’s take a look at what a heating and air conditioning contractor does to become a licensed qualified tradesman.

Becoming an HVAC Specialist

Hardinsburg KY HVAC Tech installing water heaterHVAC is an acronym that is frequently used in the trade that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC techs provide services for the installation, repair and maintenance of air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, hot water heaters and heating systems. As skilled tradesmen, they are commonly mandated to be licensed, although every state and regional municipality has its own criteria. Attaining professional certification is not mandatory, but a voluntary means for Hardinsburg KY HVAC technicians to prove that they are highly proficient and accomplished in their area of specialization. There are many respected certifications within the field that are available. Here are some of the important ones.

  • North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally recognized certification for HVAC technicians. The certification is earned by passing a proficiency exam and can 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 together with passing a comprehensive examination are required for the professional level certification. Master specialists must have three years of experience in addition to a passing score on the professional level exam. Similar to NATE, certifications are provided in several specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is required for techs that work with refrigerants. There are 3 forms of certification offered, one for small appliances, and the additional two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Since licensing could be mandated in your area, and you may also wish to acquire certification, it’s imperative that you pick an HVAC vocational school that will train you for both. And since you will probably be handling refrigerants, make certain that the program you select prepares you for passing the EPA Section 608 examinations.

HVAC Degree and Certificate Training Programs

radiator heater in Hardinsburg KY homeThere are a variety of alternatives available for HVAC training in a vocational or trade school. You can earn a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Earning a certificate will take the lesser amount of time, usually accomplished in just 6 months, however some programs are longer. A certificate will train you for the majority of HVAC positions, especially if you are licensed and have certification appropriate to the position. The degree training programs might provide a competitive advantage in the job market and will deliver more extensive training than the certificate programs. Below is a short description of each option offered near Hardinsburg KY.

  • Certificate. Usually requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are very popular among entry level commercial or residential HVAC specialists. They furnish a solid foundation of skills for job opportunities within the trade.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program delivers a more exhaustive understanding of heating & cooling systems than the certificate program. Typically taking 2 years to complete, a number of degrees incorporate 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 call for an Associate Degree, while others are a standard 4 year program. In addition to mastering how to service and maintain heating and cooling systems, you will also study how to design them.

Picking the right credential program will be based on what your long term career aspirations are, together with the time and financial resources that you have to invest. One option is to start with a certificate or perhaps an Associate Degree program, and after getting some experience in the field in Hardinsburg KY, later going back to acquire a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your strategy, be sure to ask the HVAC tech school you are looking at about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Training Online

Hardinsburg KY student attending HVAC school onlineChoosing an HVAC school online is one possibility to obtaining your education and earning a degree or certificate. Almost all schools will call for some attendance on campus to take part in practical training. A number also provide internship or work-study programs in addition to or in place of practical lab work. But since the rest of the classes may be attended online, this approach may be a more accessible solution for some Hardinsburg KY students that are pressed for time. And some online degree programs are more economical than other on campus choices. Even commuting expenses from Hardinsburg and study supplies can be reduced, helping to make education more economical. And a large number of online schools are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your job or family commitments have left you with minimal time to attend classes, perhaps an HVAC online training program will make it easier to accommodate school into your active schedule.

Questions For HVAC Training Programs

Questions to ask Hardinsburg KY HVAC training schoolsWhen you have chosen the type of degree or certificate that you desire to acquire, either online or on campus, you can start to narrow down your selection of schools. As you are no doubt aware, there are many HVAC technical schools in the Hardinsburg KY area and throughout the Country to pick from. That’s why it is extremely important to have a list of key qualifications when making school comparisons. As earlier mentioned in our opening paragraph, tuition and location will most likely be the first two factors you will consider. Following are some additional ones that you need to explore before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  Numerous HVAC vocational schools in the Hardinsburg KY area have earned either a regional or a national accreditation. They may earn Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to an individual program, for example HVAC technology. Make sure that the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting agency, for instance the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping ensure that you receive a superior education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are in many cases not available for non-accredited programs. Also, some states mandate that the HVAC training program be accredited in order to be approved for licensing.

High Completion Rates.  Ask the Heating and Cooling schools you are looking at what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage of students who enroll in and finish the program. A low completion rate may signify that students were dissatisfied with the course and dropped out. It could also suggest that the instructors were not competent to instruct the students. It’s similarly imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive directory of graduates, which may mean more contacts for the school to use for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only validate that the school has a good reputation within the field, but additionally that it has the network of Hardinsburg KY HVAC employers to help students obtain apprenticeships or employment.

Apprenticeship Programs.  A large number of HVAC technical programs are taught in conjunction with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating trade and vocational programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of HVAC companies or labor unions. Check if the schools you are reviewing have referring relationships with local Hardinsburg KY HVAC professionals. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by supplying practical training, but it also supplies employment opportunities and helps to build relationships in the area 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 already in an internship or an apprenticeship, check with the HVAC specialist you are working with regarding what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Hardinsburg KY HVAC contracting company if they can provide some pointers. Also keep in mind that unless you can move, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Hardinsburg KY residence. Take note that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, in addition to moving costs there can be higher tuition charges compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s desirable that you receive as much individualized instruction as possible, which can be challenging in larger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a few of the classes so that you can see how big they are and witness first hand the interaction between instructors and students. Speak with several of the students and get their feedback concerning class sizes and instruction. Finally, speak to a few of the instructors and find out what their level of experience is and what degrees or certifications they have earned.

Flexible Scheduling.  Verify that the class schedules for the programs you are evaluating are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Hardinsburg KY, check that the schools you are considering provide those options. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make certain that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Also, find out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, illness or family issues.

Considering an HVAC School near Hardinsburg KY?

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

Hardinsburg, Kentucky

Hardinsburg is a home rule-class city[3] in Breckinridge County, Kentucky, in the United States. It is the seat of its county.[4] The population was 2,343 at the 2010 census.[5] Hardinsburg was named after Captain William Hardin.

Capt. William Hardin, brother of the Col. John Hardin for whom Hardin County was named, established a frontier fort at the site in 1780. The settlement was known variously as Hardin's Fort and Hardin's Station in the 18th century.[6]

William Hardin received 400 acres as assignee of Benjamin Hardin, Warrant# 2586, dated February 14, 1780, and the tract was surveyed June 8, 1784. According to the description, the land was on Hardin's Creek, a branch of the Ohio River, and it was formally granted on June 21, 1786. This area would become Hardinsburg.

Learn HVAC Online Hardinsburg KY

Selecting the right HVAC training program is an important first step toward a rewarding career in the heating and cooling industry. You originally came to this website because you wanted more information regarding Learn HVAC Online. However, as we have discussed in this article, you should select an Heating and Cooling trade school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the HVAC field. Other features to look for are lots of hands-on training and modern facilities. You need to check out each of the schools personally that you are most interested in to inspect the campus and talk with both the faculty and current students. Try to get a feel for the quality of the instruction and the interaction between them. In addition, ask about scheduling choices and if night or weekend classes are offered if needed. And remember to inquire about financial assistance and student loan options too. If you ask the proper questions as we have laid out in our guidelines for assessing 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 dedication, you can eventually become a licensed HVAC technician in Hardinsburg KY.

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