How Long Does it Take to Become an HVAC Technician Blanchard LA

How to Select the Right HVAC Certification Class near Blanchard Louisiana

air conditioner condensers in Blanchard LAOnce you have come to a decision on a career as a heating and air conditioning professional, the next action is to find an HVAC technical school near Blanchard LA. But with so many to pick from, how do you decide on the best one to receive the training that you need? A number of prospective students will make their decision based solely on the price of tuition or how close the school is to their home. Even though these are relevant factors to consider, they are not the only ones to take into account. A few of the other factors 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. Those and additional benchmarks will be covered in more detail later in this article. But before we explore how to choose an HVAC trade school, let’s look at what a heating and air conditioning specialist does to become a licensed skilled tradesman.

Becoming an HVAC Contractor

Blanchard LA HVAC Tech installing water heaterHVAC is an acronym that is widely used in the trade that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC professionals provide services for the installation, repair and maintenance of central air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, hot water heaters and heating systems. As professional tradesmen, they are commonly required to be licensed, however every state and regional municipality has its own prerequisites. Obtaining professional certification is not compulsory, but a voluntary way for Blanchard LA HVAC technicians to establish that they are highly proficient and knowledgeable in their area of specialization. There are many respected certifications within the field that are available. Here are some of the significant ones.

  • North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally acknowledged certification for HVAC techs. The certification is attained by passing a proficiency examination and may be acquired in one or more specialties.
  • HVAC Excellence. This certification makes available both a professional and a master specialist credential. Two years of field experience together with passing a comprehensive exam are required for the professional level certification. Master specialists must have 3 years of experience along with a passing score on the professional level exam. As with NATE, certifications are made available in multiple specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is necessary for specialists that handle refrigerants. There are three forms of certification offered, one for small appliances, and the other two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Because licensing might be mandated in your area, and you may also intend to obtain certification, it’s imperative that you pick an HVAC technical school that will prepare you for both. And since you will most likely be dealing with refrigerants, make certain that the school you select preps you for passing the EPA Section 608 examinations.

HVAC Degree Courses

radiator heater in Blanchard LA homeThere are a number of choices available for HVAC training in a vocational or trade school. You can obtain a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Earning a certificate will take the lesser amount of time, often accomplished in just 6 months, although some courses are longer. A certificate will qualify you for most HVAC positions, particularly if you are licensed and have certification applicable to the position. The degree training programs may provide a competitive edge for securing employment and will furnish more comprehensive training than the certificate programs. Following is a short summary of each option offered near Blanchard LA.

  • Certificate. Generally 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 employment within the trade.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program provides a more detailed background of heating and a/c systems than the certificate program. Usually requiring two years to finish, many degrees include an internship or work-study program.
  • Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor’s Degree in HVAC is suited more towards a career in management or even business ownership. Some programs call for an Associate Degree, while others are a conventional 4 year program. In addition to being taught how to service and maintain heating and cooling systems, you will also learn how to design them.

Picking 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 commit. One possibility is to begin with a certificate or even an Associate Degree program, and after getting some experience in the field in Blanchard LA, later going back to acquire a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your strategy, make certain to ask the HVAC tech school you are considering about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Online Training

Blanchard LA student attending HVAC school onlineEnrolling in an HVAC school online is one alternative to attaining your training and earning a degree or certificate. Most schools will call for some attendance on campus to take part in practical training. Some also offer internship or work-study programs in addition to or instead of practical lab work. But since the remainder of the classes may be attended on the web, this approach may be a more practical solution for some Blanchard LA students that are pressed for time. And a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even commuting expenses from Blanchard and study supplies can be reduced, helping to make schooling more economical. And a large number of online schools are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your career or family responsibilities have left you with limited time to attend classes, perhaps an online HVAC degree program will make it more convenient to fit school into your hectic schedule.

Questions to Ask HVAC Schools

Questions to ask Blanchard LA HVAC training schoolsOnce you have selected the type of certificate or degree that you want to earn, either on campus or online, you can begin to narrow down your selection of schools. As you are probably aware, there are a large number of HVAC technical schools in the Blanchard LA area and across the USA to choose from. That’s why it is very important to have a list of key qualifications when making school comparisons. As formerly stated in our opening paragraph, location and tuition will probably be the initial two variables you will take into consideration. Following are some additional ones that you should research before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  Numerous HVAC vocational schools in the Blanchard LA area have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They can receive Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to an individual program, for instance HVAC technology. Confirm that the program is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping ensure that you obtain an excellent education, it may help in obtaining financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Also, a number of states mandate that the HVAC training program be accredited in order to qualify for licensing.

High Completion Rates.  Ask the Heating and Cooling schools you are reviewing what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage of students who enroll in and complete the program. A lower completion rate could suggest that students were unhappy with the course and dropped out. It may also mean that the teachers were not competent to train the students. It’s similarly important that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader directory of alumni, which can produce 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 Blanchard LA HVAC employers to help graduates acquire apprenticeships or employment.

Apprenticeship Programs.  Numerous HVAC training programs are taught along with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating vocational and trade programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of HVAC contractors or labor unions. Check if the schools you are reviewing have working partnerships with local Blanchard LA HVAC contractors. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by providing hands-on training, but it also provides job opportunities and helps to build relationships in the local HVAC professional community.

Modern Facilities.  Confirm that the campus facilities and the tools that you will be trained on are up-to-date and what you will be working with in the field. If you are already in an internship or an apprenticeship, consult with the HVAC technician you are working with regarding what you should be expecting. Otherwise, ask a local Blanchard LA HVAC company if they can give you some tips. Additionally keep in mind that unless you are willing to relocate, the school must be within driving distance of your Blanchard LA residence. Remember that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, besides the added moving costs there might be increased tuition charges compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s important that you get as much personalized instruction as possible, which can be difficult in larger classes. Ask if you can monitor some of the classes so that you can see how large they are and experience the interaction between students and teachers. Talk to some of the students and get their feedback concerning class sizes and instruction. Finally, talk to a few of the teachers and find out what their level of expertise is and what certifications or degrees they have earned.

Flexible Scheduling.  Verify that the class schedules for the schools you are evaluating are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Blanchard LA, verify that the programs you are looking at offer those choices. If you can only attend part-time, make certain that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Additionally, check out what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, sickness or family responsibilities.

Considering an HVAC School near Blanchard LA?

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

Blanchard, Louisiana

Blanchard is located at 32°35′12″N 93°53′15″W / 32.58667°N 93.88750°W / 32.58667; -93.88750 (32.586762, -93.887590).[6]Louisiana Highway 173 passes through the town as Main Street. Downtown Shreveport is 10 miles (16 km) to the southeast.

As of the census[8] of 2000, there were 2,682 people, 787 households, and 602 families residing in the town. The population density was 849.0 people per square mile (328.4/km²). There were 813 housing units at an average density of 336.7 per square mile (130.2/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 95.32% White, 2.93% African American, 0.54% Native American, 0.39% Asian, 0.10% Pacific Islander, 0.10% from other races, and 0.63% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.59% of the population.

There were 787 households out of which 37.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 65.8% were married couples living together, 7.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 23.4% were non-families. 21.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.60 and the average family size was 3.02.

How Long Does it Take to Become an HVAC Technician Blanchard LA

Enrolling in the right HVAC training course is an important beginning toward a fulfilling career in the heating & cooling trade. You originally came to this website because you wanted more information regarding How Long Does it Take to Become an HVAC Technician. However, as we have discussed in this article, you need to pick an HVAC school and a degree or certificate program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the HVAC profession. Other features to look for are plenty of practical training and modern facilities. You need to go to each of the schools in person that you are most interested in to explore the campus and talk with both the faculty and current students. Attempt to get a feel for the quality of the instruction and the interaction between them. Also, inquire about scheduling options and whether or not evening or weekend classes are offered if needed. And remember to inquire about financial aid and student loan options as well. If you ask the proper questions as we have outlined in our checklist for assessing schools, you’ll be able to filter your choices so that you can make an educated decision. With the appropriate training, hard work and dedication, you can eventually become a licensed HVAC specialist in Blanchard LA.

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