Online HVAC Training

Take Online HVAC Training at Your Own Pace!

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WHAT DOES AN HVAC TECHNICIAN DO?

HVAC stands for heating, ventilation, and air conditioners. HVAC techs install and repair all things related to air quality in a building. They make sure units set rooms to proper temperatures. Also, they maintain air ducts, water supply lines, fuel systems, and other things. They do all this to ensure that everything works well and without fault. An tech could work in many places. For instance, in a store, a hospital, an office building, or a home.

What is the difference between HVAC and HVACR? Some say it is one and the same. HVACR stands for heating, ventilation, air conditioners, and refrigeration. Because HVAC techs also work on refrigeration there is almost no difference between HVAC and HVACR.

You may need a certificate or associate’s degree to become an HVAC technician. It can take anywhere from six months to two years to earn a certificate or associate’s degree. You may likely earn this certification or degree from a trade school. You might also need to take part in a training program. Training programs may last from three to six months. In some states, you need to earn a license, which takes little time once you have knowledge and experience.

TYPES OF ONLINE HVAC TRAINING PROGRAMS

HVAC Certification

Students completing their education may have several options. This might includes taking certification courses. These are the most basic levels of education. They are typically offered as the fastest option, but the information ranges widely. Students are likely to need some education on-the-job with just a certification. To earn this certification, students must pass a test set by the EPA and provided through an EPA-approved organization.

Course Examples:
  • Refrigeration systems
  • HVAC system design
  • HVAC system installation

Associate’s Degree

At the associates level, students may typically & spend two years in the course. More in-depth education may be provided. These programs usually vary between institutions in what they cover. This is most often done in a community college or in a career center. Students often still need some hands-on experience on the job.

Course Examples:
  • Temperature control
  • Metal fabrication
  • Electric heating systems

Bachelor’s Degree

A bachelor’s degree could be thought of as the gold-star. Students typically gain a higher level of education, but it takes up to four years. These individuals may be prepared to pursue work in the industry.

Course Examples:
  • Energy audit and analysis
  • Contracting issues
  • Load analysis

SOME THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN CHOOSING AN ONLINE HVAC TRAINING PROGRAM

  • Having experience is important. To find work, you will need education (a certificate or degree) and training. Find a program that offers both if possible.
  • HVAC technicians who work with refrigerants have to pass a special exam. The Environmental Protection Agency requires it. Make sure that your education prepares you for the exam.
  • Many agencies offer other exams to people who want to work in HVAC. Earning these certifications may help you get a job. Look for certifications from organizations like
    • North American Technician
    • HVAC Excellence
    • The National Occupational Competency Testing Institute
    • The Refrigeration Service Engineers Society offer
  • Make sure the online HVAC training program you sign up for prepares you for certification exams

HVAC CERTIFICATION COURSES

HVAC courses teach students how to service, troubleshoot, install, and operate HVAC systems. They can apply what they learn in residential, commercial, and industrial settings. Classes should help students prepare to take certification tests.

Some examples of classes programs might offer include:

  • Air conditioning and refrigeration basics: In this kind of class, students learn the basics of AC and refrigeration theory. They also study safety, brazing, service tools, equipment, and other key parts of HVAC.
  • Electrical applications: In a class like this, students study basic electrical theory. They also learn how to use electrical diagrams to work with a range of air and refrigeration systems.
  • Heating technologies: This kind of class covers gas, electric, radiant, and boiler operated heating systems. Students learn how to manage and maintain furnaces, steam, and hot water boilers.
  • HVAC customer service and certification: A course like this covers communication skills, problem solving, and interviewing skills. It also teaches students about HVAC laws and regulations.

This offers a sense of what you will study in an online HVAC training program. You will likely take many courses under each area listed above.

Penn Foster: HVACR Technician Program

  • Open the door to a career opportunity with from an accredited, online school offering associate, career diploma and certificate programs
  • Learn online, at a pace that is right for you in the convenience of your own home
  • Affordable tuition with customized payment plans are available to fit your current needs

HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO BECOME AN HVAC TECHNICIAN?

Educational programs vary in what they teach and the length of the program. However, students may expect:

  • Certification programs may take 6 to 12 months to complete
  • Associates degrees may take 2 years to complete
  • Bachelor’s degree may take 4 years to complete

Students may apply to transfer credits from one program to the next in many cases. If a student has had some experience in an associate’s degree, for example, but wishes to pursue a bachelor’s degree later, that may reduce the amount of time it takes to complete the bachelor’s program. Schools range widely on how long programs may take. Some may accept a few transfer credits. Others may accept much more. This information is always provided at the time of application.

ONLINE HVAC TRAINING PROGRAM EXAMPLES

Consider a few examples of HVAC schools and the length of time it typically takes to complete these programs. Remember that schools may change this information at any time.

School# of Credits RequiredStart DatesMinimum Months to Complete
Polaris Career Center for HVAC/R Certification (online)162 Course HoursVaries12
Bevill State Community College74 Credit HoursVaries24
Lewis and Clark State College Bachelors120 Credit hours in the programVaries49

ONLINE HVAC SCHOOLS

The cost to obtaining training in HVAC online may range widely from one school to the next. The cost of an online training in HVAC school also depends on the program itself. Some students may elect to enroll in a program with more certification or better courses. This may increase the cost to the student as well.

SchoolPercent of students who graduate2019/20 Tuition (out of state unless*)
Altierus Career College75%$15,498
University of Cincinnati-Main Campus72%$9,322
Pickens Technical College79%$7,990
Northern Michigan University52%$16,751
Ferris State University51%$12,068
Trenholm State Community College34%$8,640
State University of New York at Canton33%$12,580
Southeast Technical Institute44%$6,448
Moraine Park Technical College46%$5,885
Pennsylvania College of Technology41%$24,510

In 2018, HVAC students paid these median prices for tuition:

  • $3,469 per year for in state tuition at a public school
  • $15,786 per year for out of state tuition at a private school

Most HVAC schools offer associate’s degrees. This type of degree takes one and a half to two years to earn. Many other HVAC students earned certificates. Certificates take six months, one year, or two years to earn. All need you to have a high school diploma to begin.

1

Borough of Manhattan Community College

HVACR Technician – NATE Service Core 

This online HVAC training course also prepares you to take NATE Core Certification Exam, which provides the basics for entry level and early career technicians to enrich the skills of installers and technicians and is a stepping stone to becoming a HVACR Certified Technician. The Core exam covers the basic areas of safety, tools, basic construction, using basic science, achieving desired conditions, taking temperature and humidity measurements, and basic electrical.

How Long will it Take?

  • 6 Months / 100 Course Hrs Self Paced. Study On Your Own Schedule

How Much Will it Cost?

  • $2,295

2

Empire State Learning

HVACR Controls/Building Automation Systems

This Course Is Designed For HVACR Technicians, Facility Managers, And Commercial Maintenance Technicians Who Have Completed An Educational Course For HVACR And/Or Have Industry Related Work Experience. The Course Will Build On Your Knowledge Of HVACR Fundamentals And Equipment And Help You To Learn HVACR Controls And Building Automation Systems.

How Long will it Take?

  • 6 Months / 90 Course Hrs Self Paced. Study On Your Own Schedule

How Much Will it Cost?

  • $3,695

3

Empire State Learning

HVACR Certified Technician

Do You Love Working With Your Hands? Do You Want To Work In An Industry Where There Are Always New Things To Learn? The HVACR Industry Is One Of The Most Reliable Career Choices You Can Make, As There Is A Shortage Of Technicians With HVACR Certifications In The U.S. Our HVACR Certified Technician Course Will Help You On The Path To Nationally Recognized Certifications, Whether You Want To Start A Career Or Already Work…

How Long will it Take?

  • 12 Months / 277 Course Hrs Self Paced. Study On Your Own Schedule

How Much Will it Cost?

  • $3,795

Sponsored Schools

ONLINE HVAC CERTIFICATION

Earning a certificate is different from earning certification in HVAC. Like associate degrees, certificates offer classes and training in a school format. They help you learn what you need to learn to grow your skills. They help you prepare to test for certification. A certification may help future employers see you know the topic completely and can follow laws and rules.

You might test for certification through one of these agencies:

NORTH AMERICAN TECHNICIAN EXCELLENCE (NATE)

NATE offers tests for certificates and certification at four levels. The first two levels allow people to earn entry level and new worker certificates. These levels test people’s basic knowledge of HVAC. The third and fourth levels of tests lead to NATE certification. NATE certification is for people who have worked in HVAC for two to five years or longer. These certifications show that people have high level skills and knowledge in HVAC.

People can also earn certifications in installation and service specialties through NATE.

For the first level of certificate, people can take the test online. The next three levels ask people to test for a certificate or certification at a testing center. This is because they need someone to supervise the test taking.

HVAC EXCELLENCE

HVAC Excellence plays two roles. One is to make sure that schools offer quality programs to students. Another is to allow people to test for different levels of certification. Levels of certification include employment ready, specialty, professional, and master specialist. At each of these levels, people can earn certifications in many subjects. Before testing at these levels, people have to pass a core exam. They also have to have two years of experience in the field.

People take this exam at testing centers across the country. This allows HVAC Excellence to monitor tests.

THE NATIONAL OCCUPATIONAL COMPETENCY TESTING INSTITUTE (NOCTI)

NOCTI offers many types of certificates and certifications to people and schools. NOCTI’s options include job ready, pathway, state customized, and other certifications. Each certification tests a certain kind and level of knowledge. They help workers show that they have key skills and knowledge.

People can take some NOCTI tests online. But, people most often take NOCTI tests at testing centers. This allows NOCTI to monitor tests.

THE REFRIGERATION SERVICE ENGINEERS SOCIETY (RSES)

RSES is a training and testing center for people who work in HVACR. It offers online web courses to prepare for test taking. It also offers NATE and other core certifications for those who are ready. People can join RSES to grow their knowledge as their career develops.

People can study RSES materials online. However, they must take their tests at a testing center. This is so that RSES can monitor tests.

THE EPA 608 UNIVERSAL CERTIFICATION ONLINE

Law requires HVAC technicians to earn the EPA 608 Universal Certification. This cert shows technicians know how to service, repair, and dispose of HVAC equipment. The standards for this certification are set by the Environmental Protection Agency. The certification is online and at testing centers across the country. NATE, HVAC Excellence, NOCTI, RSES, and other agencies also offer the cert.

HOW MUCH DO HVAC TECHS MAKE?

There are many occupations similar to an HVAC technician. Many of them require the same amount of mechanical skill and mastery of a particular trade. The learning principles may be very alike, and the content of the work follows. Study which options may be available using statistics compiled by the BLS.

TOP STATES FOR HVAC JOBS

STATEEMPLOYMENTANNUAL MEAN WAGE
Florida31,710$44,720
California29,650$59,550
Texas26,690$46,840
New York18,810$59,660
Pennsylvania15,630$51,880

TOP PAYING STATES FOR HVAC TECHNICIANS

STATEEMPLOYMENTANNUAL MEAN WAGE
Washington D.C.30$69,610
Alaska300$66,290
Connecticut4,170$64,180
Hawaii1,050$61,670
Massachusetts7,530$59,890

HVAC CAREERS

People with HVAC skills and knowledge work in many roles. In 2018 367,900 people worked in HVAC. Jobs for people in this area could grow by 13% between 2018 and 2028 with a projected 42,800 job openings.

HEATING, AIR CONDITIONING, AND REFRIGERATION MECHANICS AND INSTALLERS

Pristine air quality, efficient energy systems and proper climate control are the goals of the HVAC technician, and this can require very complex work depending on the facility that is being improved. Technicians work in hospitals, factories, big office buildings, schools and residential homes. The goals are often various, and analyzing particular components and necessary repairs can be difficult based on the size and scope of the job.

Median Salary: $47,610 per year
Job growth through 2028: 13% (Much faster than average)
Typical Entry level education: Postsecondary nondegree award

BOILERMAKERS

These professionals assemble and repair boilers and large closed vats that hold liquids or gas. They are proficient at analyzing blueprints and determining what parts are necessary for repair or installation of boilers. And often work with particular tools, such as robotic welders, a plethora of power tools and other equipment, to complete a job. They also often live away from home at a job site for long periods.

Median Salary: $62,150 per year
Job growth through 2028: 6% (As fast as average)
Typical Entry level education: High school diploma or equivalent

STATE

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Sources for school statistics is the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics.

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