HVAC Schools Near Me in Pickens SC 29671

How to Find the Right HVAC Certification Class near Pickens South Carolina

Pickens SC HVAC tech servicing AC compressorOnce you have decided on a career as a heating and air conditioner specialist, the next step is to locate an HVAC vocational school near Pickens SC. But with so many to select from, how do you select the right one to get the training that you need? Many future students will make their selection based solely on the cost of tuition or how near the school is to their residence. While these are relevant factors to consider, they are not the only ones to evaluate. Some of the other details that you need to look into are the graduation rates of the HVAC schools, their reputations, and if they are accredited by professional trade organizations. Those and other benchmarks will be discussed in more detail later in this article. But before we explore how to pick an HVAC training program, let’s look at what a heating and air conditioning contractor does to become a licensed qualified tradesman.

Becoming an HVAC Contractor in Pickens SC

Pickens SC HVAC tech servicing industrial furnacesHVAC is an acronym that is extensively used in the trade that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC contractors specialize in the installation, maintenance and repair of central air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, hot water heaters and heating systems. As skilled tradesmen, they are commonly required to be licensed, however each state and local municipality has its own prerequisites. Obtaining professional certification is not compulsory, but a voluntary means for Pickens SC HVAC techs to prove that they are exceptionally qualified and experienced in their area of expertise. There are several recognized certifications within the industry that are available. Below are a few of the important ones.

  • North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally acknowledged certification for HVAC techs. The certification is attained by passing a competency exam and may be earned 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 examination are needed for the professional level certification. Master specialists need to have 3 years of experience in addition to a passing result on the professional level exam. Similar to NATE, certifications are offered in multiple specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is required for technicians that handle refrigerants. There are three forms of certification available, one for small appliances, and the other two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Considering that licensing could be mandated in your location, and you may also intend to earn certification, it’s important that you pick an HVAC technical school that will prepare you for both. And since you will probably be working with refrigerants, make sure that the school you pick preps you for passing the EPA Section 608 exams.

HVAC Degree Schools

Pickens SC HVAC contractor installing residential water heaterThere are several options available for HVAC training in a technical or trade school. You can attain a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Acquiring a certificate will take the least period of time, often completed in just six months, however some courses are longer. A certificate will qualify you for the majority of HVAC positions, especially if you are licensed and have certification appropriate to the position. The degree programs can provide a competitive edge in the job market and will furnish more in-depth training than the certificate programs. Below is a brief description of each credential offered near Pickens SC.

  • Certificate. Usually requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are very popular among beginning residential or commercial HVAC technicians. They furnish a solid foundation of skills for employment within the industry.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program delivers a more comprehensive understanding of heating & cooling systems than the certificate program. Normally taking two years to complete, many degrees include an internship or work-study program.
  • Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor’s Degree in HVAC is suited more for a career in management or even business ownership. Some programs require an Associate Degree, while others are a traditional 4 year program. In addition to mastering how to service and maintain heating and cooling systems, you will also study how to design them.

Choosing the appropriate credential program will be dependent on what your long term career aspirations are, along with the time and money that you have to invest. One option is to begin with a certificate or perhaps an Associate Degree program, and after getting some experience in the trade in Pickens SC, eventually going back to earn a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your strategy, make sure to ask the HVAC tech school you are looking at about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Online Classes

attending HVAC Training School Online in Pickens SCAttending an HVAC program online is one option to attaining your training and earning a degree or certificate. Most schools will require some attendance on campus to complete practical training. A number also sponsor internship or work-study programs in addition to or in place of practical lab work. But since the remainder of the classes can be participated in via the internet, this alternative may be a more practical solution for many Pickens SC students that are short on time. And a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other traditional alternatives. Even travelling expenses from Pickens and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more economical. And many online schools are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your career or family commitments have left you with little time to attend classes, maybe an HVAC online training program will make it less complicated to fit school into your hectic lifestyle.

Questions For HVAC Certification Classes near Pickens SC

As soon as you have chosen the type of certificate or degree that you wish to acquire, either on campus or online, you can start to narrow down your list of schools. As you are certainly aware, there are a large number of HVAC technical schools in the Pickens SC area and all over the United States to pick from. That’s why it is extremely important to have a list of key qualifications when making school evaluations. As formerly mentioned in our opening paragraph, location and tuition will probably be the initial 2 aspects you will look at. Following are some additional ones that you should explore before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  A large number of HVAC vocational programs in the Pickens SC area have acquired either a regional or a national accreditation. They may attain Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to a specific program, such as HVAC technology. Make certain that the school and program are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency, for example the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping guarantee that you receive an excellent education, it can help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited programs. Also, a number of states require that the HVAC training course be accredited in order to qualify for licensing.

High Completion Rates.  Ask the Heating and Air Conditioning schools you are looking at what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students who enroll in and finish the program. A lower completion rate might indicate that students were unhappy with the course and quit. It may also indicate that the instructors were not competent to train the students. It’s also imperative that the schools have high 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 utilize for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate will not only confirm that the school has an excellent reputation within the field, but additionally that it has the network of Pickens SC HVAC employers to assist graduates acquire apprenticeships or employment.

Apprenticeship Programs.  Many HVAC training programs are taught in conjunction with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating vocational and technical schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of HVAC companies or trade unions. Check if the schools you are reviewing have referring relationships with local Pickens SC HVAC contractors. An apprenticeship not only provides a valuable experience by supplying hands-on training, but it also provides job opportunities and helps to establish relationships in the area HVAC professional community.

Modern Facilities.  Confirm that the campus facilities and the equipment that you will be trained on are state-of-the-art and what you will be working with in the field. If you are presently in an internship or an apprenticeship, consult with the HVAC tech you are working under regarding what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Pickens SC HVAC contractor if they can provide some pointers. Additionally keep in mind that unless you are willing to relocate, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Pickens SC residence. Remember that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to relocation costs there can be higher tuition fees compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s important that you get as much individualized training as possible, which can be challenging in bigger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a few of the classes so that you can observe how large they are and experience the interaction between instructors and students. Talk to a few of the students and get their comments concerning class sizes and instruction. Finally, talk with a few of the instructors and learn what their level of expertise is and what certifications or degrees they hold.

Flexible Scheduling.  Confirm that the class schedules for the schools you are assessing are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you are only able to attend classes at night or on weekends near Pickens SC, check that the schools you are looking at offer those choices. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Also, check out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, illness or family responsibilities.

Attending HVAC School near Pickens SC?

Pickens, South Carolina

Pickens, formerly called Pickens Courthouse, is a city in Pickens County, South Carolina, United States. The population was 3,126 at the 2010 census. Pickens changed its classification from a town to a city in 1998, but it was not reported to the Census Bureau until 2001.[3] It is the county seat of Pickens County.[4] It was named after Andrew Pickens (1739–1817), an American revolutionary soldier and US Congressman for South Carolina.

Present-day Pickens of Pickens County was previously Cherokee Territory. During the American Revolutionary War, the Cherokee sided with the Kingdom of Great Britain. When Great Britain was defeated in the war, the Cherokee were forced to surrender their land. In 1791, the state legislature established Washington District that comprises present-day Greenville, Anderson, Oconee, and Pickens County. In 1798 Washington District was divided into Greenville and Pendleton districts. The Pendleton district eventually became Anderson, Oconee, and Pickens County. Pendleton District was divided in 1828 into Anderson and Pickens. A courthouse was established on the banks of the Keowee River where the town of Pickens Court House was developed. The Hagood-Mauldin House was built circa 1856 and is one of the historic structures of Pickens County. In 1868, the Pickens District was divided for a final time, into Pickens and Oconee counties. Pickens Court House relocated to its present-day site and was renamed to Pickens.

The Pickens Railway was established in 1898 as a shortline railroad from Easley to Pickens.[5] From 1955 until 1987, Sangamo-Weston Inc. operated a capacitor manufacturing facility just outside Pickens. Until they were banned in the US, Sangamo discharged a significant amount of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) into a tributary of the Twelve Mile River which feeds Lake Hartwell. Sangamo also dumped contaminated waste in six locations in the vicinity of Pickens. In two of these locations, the waste was burned, forming more dangerous dioxins. According to the Spartanburg Herald-Journal, contamination was discovered at the "Breazeale site", southwest of town. Schlumberger paid $11.8 million to federal and state agencies for injuries to natural resources caused by the contamination.[6]

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Enroll in the Right HVAC Trade School near Pickens SC

Finding the right HVAC training program is a crucial first step toward a rewarding career in the heating and cooling industry. As we have covered in this post, you need to select a school and a degree or certificate program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the HVAC profession. Other things to look for are sufficient practical training and modern facilities. You should visit each of the schools personally that you are most interested in to inspect 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. Additionally, inquire about scheduling choices and if night or weekend classes are available if needed. And remember to inquire about financial assistance and student loan options too. If you ask the proper questions as we have detailed in our checklist for comparing schools, you’ll be able to filter your options so that you can make an informed decision. With the right training, hard work and dedication, you can ultimately become a licensed HVAC professional in Pickens SC.

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    Business Results 1 - 10 of 72

    Complete Heat And Air
    2 Reviews
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    C & M Gas & Electric
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