HVAC Schools Near Me in Piedmont SC 29673

How to Choose an HVAC Certification Course near Piedmont South Carolina

Piedmont SC HVAC tech servicing AC compressorOnce you have decided on a career as a heating and air conditioner specialist, the next step is to find an HVAC technical school near Piedmont SC. But with so many to pick from, how do you pick the right one to obtain the training that you require? Some prospective students will make their selection based entirely on the price of tuition or how near the school is to their home. While these are relevant concerns, they are not the only ones to take into account. Just some of the other factors that you need to research are the graduation rates of the HVAC schools, their reputations, and if they are accredited by professional trade organizations. Those and other criteria will be discussed in more detail later within this article. But before we tackle how to pick an HVAC trade school, let’s take a look at what a heating and air conditioning technician does to become a licensed qualified tradesman.

How to Become an HVAC Specialist in Piedmont SC

Piedmont SC HVAC tech servicing industrial furnacesHVAC is an acronym that is frequently used in the trade that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC techs specialize in the installation, maintenance and repair of central air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, water heaters and heating systems. As professional tradesmen, they are commonly required to be licensed, although every state and local municipality has its own prerequisites. Acquiring professional certification is not required, but an optional way for Piedmont SC HVAC techs to prove that they are highly proficient and accomplished in their area of specialization. There are multiple acknowledged certifications within the trade that are available. Following are some of the important ones.

  • North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally recognized certification for HVAC techs. The certification is earned by passing a competency examination and may be acquired in one or more specialties.
  • HVAC Excellence. This certification makes available both a professional and a master specialist credential. 2 years of professional experience in addition to passing a comprehensive exam are needed for the professional level certification. Master specialists must have three years of experience as well as a passing result on the professional level exam. Similar to NATE, certifications are offered in various specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is necessary for technicians that handle refrigerants. There are 3 types of certification offered, one for small appliances, and the additional two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Considering that licensing may be required in your area, and you may also intend to earn certification, it’s essential that you pick an HVAC vocational school that will prepare you for both. And since you will probably be handling refrigerants, make sure that the program you decide on prepares you for passing the EPA Section 608 examinations.

HVAC Degree and Certificate Courses

Piedmont SC HVAC contractor installing residential water heaterThere are several choices offered for HVAC training in a vocational or trade school. You can earn a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Obtaining a certificate will take the least amount of time, often achieved in just six months, although some programs are longer. A certificate will train you for the majority of HVAC positions, particularly if you are licensed and have certification relevant to the position. The degree programs can provide a competitive advantage in the job market and will deliver more in-depth training than the certificate programs. Following is a short summary of each credential offered near Piedmont SC.

  • Certificate. Generally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are preferred among entry level residential or commercial HVAC specialists. They provide a strong foundation of skills for job opportunities within the trade.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program delivers a more extensive knowledge of heating and a/c systems than the certificate program. Typically requiring two years to finish, a number of degrees incorporate an internship or work-study program.
  • Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor’s Degree in HVAC is geared more for a career in management as well as business ownership. Some programs require an Associate Degree, while others are a traditional 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.

Selecting the ideal credential program will be dependent on what your long term career aspirations are, together with the time and financial resources that you have to invest. One approach is to start with a certificate or perhaps an Associate Degree program, and after getting some experience in the field in Piedmont SC, eventually returning to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your strategy, make certain to ask the HVAC tech school you are looking at about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Online Courses

attending HVAC Training School Online in Piedmont SCEnrolling in an HVAC program online is one possibility to getting your training and receiving a degree or certificate. Nearly all schools will call for some attendance on campus to take part in hands on training. Many also sponsor internship or work-study programs in addition to or in place of practical lab work. But since the rest of the classes can be attended via the internet, this option may be a more accessible solution for some Piedmont SC students that are short on time. And many online degree programs are less costly than other traditional choices. Even driving expenses from Piedmont and study supplies may be minimized, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your work or family responsibilities have left you with limited time to attend classes, maybe an online HVAC degree program will make it less complicated to fit school into your active lifestyle.

Questions For HVAC Trade Schools near Piedmont SC

When you have chosen the type of certificate or degree that you want to obtain, either online or on campus, you can start to limit your selection of schools. As you are probably aware, there are many HVAC trade schools in the Piedmont SC area and throughout the United States to choose from. That’s why it is essential to have a list of key qualifiers when making school comparisons. As earlier mentioned in our opening paragraph, tuition and location will most likely be the first 2 factors you will take into consideration. Following are some additional ones that you will want to research before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  Many HVAC trade schools in the Piedmont SC area have earned either a regional or a national accreditation. They may earn Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to a specific program, for example HVAC technology. Make certain that the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, for instance the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping ensure that you acquire a superior education, it may assist in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited schools. Also, many states require that the HVAC training program be accredited for it to be approved for licensing.

High Completion Rates.  Ask the HVAC schools you are reviewing what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage or portion of students who enroll in and finish the program. A lower completion rate may indicate that students were disappointed with the course and quit. It may also mean that the teachers were not competent to train the students. It’s also imperative that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive directory of alumni, which can produce more contacts for the school to employ for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only confirm that the school has an excellent reputation within the trade, but additionally that it has the network of Piedmont SC HVAC employers to help grads secure apprenticeships or employment.

Apprenticeship Programs.  Most HVAC training programs are taught along with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating vocational and technical programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of Heating and Cooling contractors or labor unions. Ask if the schools you are comparing have working partnerships with local Piedmont SC HVAC contractors. An apprenticeship not only provides a valuable experience by furnishing hands-on training, but it also provides job opportunities and helps to form relationships in the local 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 already in an internship or an apprenticeship, talk to the HVAC tech you are working under concerning what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Piedmont SC HVAC company if they can provide some tips. Additionally keep in mind that unless you are willing to relocate, the school must be within driving distance of your Piedmont SC home. Take note that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, besides the added relocation costs there may be higher tuition fees compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s important that you get as much individualized instruction as possible, which can be challenging in bigger classes. Ask if you can monitor a few of the classes so that you can see how big they are and witness first hand the interaction between students and instructors. Talk to several of the students and get their comments regarding class sizes and instruction. Finally, speak with some of the teachers and learn what their level of experience is and what certifications or degrees they hold.

Flexible Scheduling.  Make sure that the class schedules for the schools you are reviewing are flexible enough to fulfill your needs. If you are only able to attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Piedmont SC, verify that the programs you are comparing provide those choices. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make certain that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Also, ask what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, illness or family issues.

Attending HVAC School near Piedmont SC?

Piedmont, South Carolina

Native Americans and early settlers of Piedmont called the area "Big Shoals of the Saluda" after the Saluda River. The Native Americans used the shoals as a crossing. David Garrison established a grist mill around 1850 upon the shoals changing the name of the area to Garrison Shoals. Henry Pinckney Hammett bought this property for his cotton mill that used water power of the shoals. The name of the area changed again to Piedmont, "Foot of the Mountains" and became a mill town. The American Civil War disrupted Hammett's project until 1876 when his plant began operations. Piedmont was added to Hammett's charter for Piedmont Manufacturing Company and a railroad station. Water power from the Saluda River was also used to produce electricity to run the machinery from the 1880s to the 1920s. The machinery of the Piedmont Manufacturing Company was from Saco Lowell and Whitin Machine Works that helped finance Hammett's company.[4] In 1946 the mills were sold to J.P. Stevens and Company where it then was updated with modern features. Manufacturing continued until 1977 and in 1983 most of Piedmont Manufacturing Company burned down.[5]

Piedmont is located in northern Anderson County and southwestern Greenville County at 34°42′15″N 82°27′41″W / 34.70417°N 82.46139°W / 34.70417; -82.46139 (34.704140, -82.461427).[6] It is 12 miles (19 km) south of the center of Greenville. Exit 35 on Interstate 85 is 2 miles (3 km) to the west of the center of Piedmont. South Carolina state road 86 cuts through the small town also, connecting with Interstate 85 at Exit 35. According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 8.8 square miles (22.7 km2), of which 8.6 square miles (22.3 km2) is land and 0.15 square miles (0.4 km2), or 1.93%, is water.[3] The Saluda River flows southwards over a dam through the center of town.

As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 4,684 people, 1,829 households, and 1,349 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 545.6 people per square mile (210.8/km²). There were 1,992 housing units at an average density of 232.0 per square mile (89.6/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 92.08% White, 5.85% African American, 0.19% Native American, 0.23% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.11% from other races, and 1.52% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.20% of the population.

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Select the Right HVAC Training Classes near Piedmont SC

Selecting the ideal HVAC training program is a crucial beginning toward a gratifying career in the heating and cooling trade. As we have discussed in this post, you should select a school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the HVAC field. Other things to search for are sufficient hands-on training and modern facilities. You should visit each of the schools in person that you are most interested in to inspect the campus and speak with both the current students and faculty. Attempt to get a feel for the quality of the instruction and the interaction between them. In addition, inquire about scheduling choices and if night or weekend classes are available if needed. And don’t forget to ask about financial assistance and student loan options too. If you ask the appropriate questions as we have laid out in our checklist for comparing schools, you’ll be able to narrow down your options so that you can make an educated decision. With the proper training, hard work and dedication, you can eventually become a licensed HVAC contractor in Piedmont SC.

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    Business Results 1 - 10 of 84

    TAPP Mechanical
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    Phone:
    Piedmont, SC 29673

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