Which Certifications Are Best for HVAC?

Do you have 9 months to train to become an HVAC technician and prepare for certifications that can help you to stand out from the crowd? Are you wondering which certifications you should focus on to help prepare for a career in HVAC?1 If you are unsure, the good news is that the HVACR Technician Program at MIAT College of Technology offers curriculum to help you prepare to test for these important HVAC certifications.2

Which Certifications Are Best for HVAC?

Certifications are designed to hold HVAC technicians to a certain standard of knowledge, productivity and safety. Achieving HVAC certification before entering the workforce is not only important to employers, it also ensures that technicians know how to conduct themselves and handle their work without having to be taught the basics. Two of the more important certifications included in the HVACR program at MIAT include:

EPA Section 608

The universal refrigerant handling certification under EPA Section 608 of the Federal Clean Air Act requires certification for HVAC technicians who maintain, service, repair and dispose of equipment that could release refrigerants into the atmosphere. HVAC technicians must pass Section 608 technician certification before starting work in the HVAC industry. The following activities define a technician as someone who performs any of the following duties:

  • Attaching and detaching hoses and gauges to and from an appliance to measure pressure within the appliance.
  • Adding refrigerant to or removing refrigerant from an appliance.
  • Any other activity that violates the integrity of a motor vehicle air conditioner-like appliance or small appliance (other than a disposal).

The EPA has developed four types of certifications:

Type I – For servicing small appliances (5 pounds or less of refrigerant).

Type II – For servicing or disposing of high-pressure appliances, except small appliances and MVACs.

Type III – For servicing or disposing of low-pressure appliances.

Universal – For servicing all types of equipment.

NATE Certification

North American Technician Excellence (NATE) is the nation’s largest nonprofit certification organization for heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration technicians. NATE certification tests HVACR technicians on real-world knowledge of HVACR systems to validate their professional competency of service and installation. Customers and employers trust HVACR technicians who are certified by NATE to install and repair HVACR systems properly.

Why Are HVAC Certifications Important?

There are many reasons to get certified in HVAC. Whether you want to stand out from your competition for employment or work on HVAC-branded systems that require technicians with the highest quality standards, having HVAC certification is a feather in your cap and can help build confidence with employers and customers.

Employers Prefer Certified HVAC Technicians

Most HVAC employers prefer hiring certified technicians. Having a certification helps show proficiency in HVAC, whether handling refrigerant or performing basic HVAC duties. Both the EPA Section 608 and NATE certifications help show that technicians know what they’re doing and can be trusted to perform HVAC duties for residential and commercial customers.

Manufacturers and Distributors Want to Uphold Warranties

Many HVAC system manufacturers have warranties they must uphold to customer inquiries. They prefer that only certified HVAC technicians work on their HVAC systems because they know certification implies competence in duties. A certified HVAC technician will be able to follow procedures and protocols when installing, repairing and maintaining HVAC systems or disposing of hazardous chemicals.

Build Confidence

Attaining HVAC certifications can help technicians foster confidence with coworkers and supervisors — and they can also help techs build their own confidence levels. Installing a new HVAC system can be complex, but knowing you have passed certification can be reassuring while performing HVAC duties. This confidence can also help calm any customers you work with. When you exude confidence, the customer will have confidence in you as well.

How Do You Prepare to Test for HVAC Certifications?

A great way to prepare to test for HVAC certifications is to attend the HVACR Technician Program at MIAT. We can help you build your knowledge of heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration, as well as help you gain the skills to install, repair, maintain and upgrade systems that control air temperature and quality in numerous settings and establishments.

Training safely on HVACR systems requires a thorough knowledge of the science of heating and cooling, a keen awareness of safety procedures, a proficient familiarity with the tools of the trade, and the ability to perform a variety of manual skills.

Final Thoughts

Now that you know which HVAC certifications are best, it’s time to learn more about MIAT. We have an HVACR curriculum that not only helps students lay a foundation they can build upon throughout their careers, but it also prepares them to test for the EPA Section 608 and NATE certifications.1 When you complete the HVACR Technician Program at MIAT, you are taking the first step toward a future in HVAC.

Want to Learn More?

Does an education in HVACR interest you? The HVACR Technician Program at MIAT College of Technology is 9 months in length for full-time students, assuming no interruption in training, and is offered at our Canton, Michigan, and Houston, Texas campuses. The training allows students to focus on their chosen field, graduating faster than it takes to earn a traditional 2- or 4-year college degree or to complete a 3- to 5-year apprenticeship.1

To learn more about our HVACR program and to explore whether MIAT is right for you, fill out the form on this page. Contact us if you are interested in training to become an HVAC technician today.

1MIAT is an educational institution and cannot guarantee employment or salary.

2For program outcome information and other disclosures, visit www.miat.edu/disclosures.