HVAC Schools Near Me in Dunlap TN 37327

How to Choose an HVAC Certification Class near Dunlap Tennessee

Dunlap TN HVAC tech servicing AC compressorNow that you have made a decision on a career as a heating and air conditioner technician, the next action is to find an HVAC vocational school near Dunlap TN. But with so many to select from, how do you decide on the right one to receive the training that you require? A number of future students will make their choice based solely on the price of tuition or how near the school is to their residence. While these are necessary considerations, they are not the only ones to take into account. A few 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 additional benchmarks will be discussed in more detail later within this article. But before we explore how to pick an HVAC training program, let’s take a look at what a heating and a/c professional does to become a licensed professional tradesman.

Becoming an HVAC Tech in Dunlap TN

Dunlap TN HVAC tech servicing industrial furnacesHVAC is an acronym that is widely used in the industry that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC technicians provide services for the installation, repair and maintenance of central air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, hot water heaters and heating systems. As skilled tradesmen, they are generally mandated to be licensed, however each state and regional municipality has its own requirements. Obtaining professional certification is not required, but a voluntary means for Dunlap TN HVAC techs to establish that they are exceptionally qualified and experienced in their area of expertise. There are many acknowledged certifications within the industry that are offered. Below are some of the important ones.

  • North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally recognized certification for HVAC technicians. The certification is earned by passing a proficiency exam and may be received in one or more specialties.
  • HVAC Excellence. This certification makes available both a professional and a master specialist credential. Two 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 along with a passing score on the professional level exam. Similar to NATE, certifications are provided in several specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is required for technicians that handle refrigerants. There are 3 types of certification available, one for small appliances, and the other two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Since licensing may be required in your location, and you may also wish to obtain certification, it’s imperative that you choose an HVAC vocational school that will prepare you for both. And since you will probably be handling refrigerants, make certain that the school you choose prepares you for passing the EPA Section 608 exams.

HVAC Degree and Certificate Schools

Dunlap TN HVAC contractor installing residential water heaterThere are a number of choices available for HVAC training in a technical or vocational school. You can attain a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Obtaining a certificate will take the lesser amount of time, usually achieved in as little as six months, although some programs are longer. A certificate will train you for most HVAC positions, especially if you are licensed and have certification related to the position. The degree training programs might provide a competitive edge for securing employment and will deliver more comprehensive training than the certificate programs. Below is a short summary of each credential offered near Dunlap TN.

  • Certificate. Generally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are preferred among beginning 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 supplies a more extensive knowledge of heating and cooling systems than the certificate program. Normally taking 2 years to finish, a number of degrees feature 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 air conditioning systems, you will also study how to design them.

Selecting the appropriate credential program will be dependent on what your long term career goals are, as well as the time and financial resources that you have to commit. One possibility is to start with a certificate or even an Associate Degree program, and after getting some experience in the field in Dunlap TN, eventually returning to earn a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your tactic, make sure to ask the HVAC tech school you are looking at about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Schools Online

attending HVAC Training School Online in Dunlap TNAttending an HVAC school online is one alternative in attaining your training and earning a degree or certificate. Almost all schools will call for some attendance on campus to participate in hands on training. Many also sponsor internship or work-study programs in addition to or as an alternative to practical lab work. But since the remainder of the classes can be participated in on the web, this option may be a more convenient solution for some Dunlap TN students that are short on time. And a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even driving expenses from Dunlap and study materials may be lessened, helping to make schooling more budget-friendly. And a large number of online schools are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your job or family commitments have left you with minimal time to attend classes, perhaps an HVAC online training program will make it less complicated to accommodate school into your active lifestyle.

Questions to Ask HVAC Certification Courses near Dunlap TN

After you have picked the type of certificate or degree that you wish to obtain, either on campus or online, you can begin to limit your selection of schools. As you are certainly aware, there are numerous HVAC vocational schools in the Dunlap TN area and across the United States to choose from. That’s why it is imperative to have a checklist of key qualifications when making school evaluations. As previously stated in our opening paragraph, tuition and location will probably be the first two factors you will look at. Following are several additional ones that you will want to research before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  Many HVAC trade programs in the Dunlap TN area have received either a regional or a national accreditation. They can attain Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to an individual program, for instance HVAC technology. Verify that the program and school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency, for instance the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping guarantee that you acquire an excellent education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs. Furthermore, many states mandate that the HVAC training course be accredited for it to qualify for licensing.

High Completion Rates.  Ask the Heating and Cooling schools you are considering what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage of students who enroll in and complete the course. A lower completion rate may suggest that students were unhappy with the program and quit. It may also suggest that the teachers were not competent to train the students. It’s also important that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive directory of graduates, which can mean more contacts for the school to utilize for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the industry, but additionally that it has the network of Dunlap TN HVAC employers to assist students secure apprenticeships or employment.

Apprenticeship Programs.  A large number of HVAC trade programs are taught in conjunction with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating technical and vocational programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of Heating and Cooling businesses or labor unions. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have referring partnerships with local Dunlap TN HVAC specialists. An apprenticeship not only provides a rewarding experience by providing practical training, but it also furnishes employment opportunities and helps to establish relationships in the area HVAC professional community.

Modern Facilities.  Make certain 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, talk to the HVAC technician you are working under regarding what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Dunlap TN HVAC contractor if they can give you some pointers. Also bear in mind that unless you are able to move, the school must be within driving distance of your Dunlap TN residence. Remember that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, besides the added relocation costs there may be increased tuition charges compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s desirable that you receive as much one-on-one instruction as possible, which can be challenging in bigger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a couple of the classes so that you can see how big they are and witness first hand the interaction between students and instructors. Talk with some of the students and get their comments relating to class sizes and instruction. Last, speak with a few of the teachers and find out what their level of expertise 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 handle your needs. If you are only able to go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Dunlap TN, verify that the programs you are reviewing provide those choices. If you can only attend part-time, be sure that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Additionally, find out what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, sickness or family issues.

Attending HVAC School near Dunlap TN?

Dunlap, Tennessee

Dunlap was founded in 1858 as a county seat for Sequatchie County, which had been created the previous year. The city was named for state legislator William Dunlap, who played a prominent role in the county's creation. The city's initial 40 acres (0.16 km2), which were deeded to the county commissioners by Willam Rankin, were chosen due to their central location within the new county. Dunlap was incorporated as a city in 1941.[6]

Around 1900, the Douglas Coal and Coke Company purchased 14,000 acres (57 km2) of land in the Dunlap vicinity with plans to mine coal and convert the coal into industrial coke. Coke, which is created by heating coal and removing its volatile matter, is used primarily as a deoxidizing agent in the production of pig iron. To convert coal mined on nearby Fredonia Mountain into coke, Douglas built the first of 268 ovens. The company used an incline railway to move the coal from the mountain to the ovens. Although Douglas went bankrupt in 1904, the Chattanooga Iron and Coal Company purchased the ovens, and continued producing coke until 1927.[7] In the 1980s and 1990s, the Sequatchie Valley Historical Association acquired the ruins of the coke ovens and established Dunlap Coke Ovens Park.[8]

Dunlap is located at 35°22′38″N 85°23′18″W / 35.37722°N 85.38833°W / 35.37722; -85.38833 (35.377236, -85.388455).[9] The city is located near the center of Sequatchie Valley, a narrow, 65-mile (105 km) long valley that slices through the Cumberland Plateau in southeastern Tennessee and northeastern Alabama. The plateau's western Sequatchie Valley escarpment, known locally as "Fredonia Mountain," rises over 1,000 feet (300 m) above the valley just west of Dunlap. The Sequatchie River forms the city's southeastern boundary.

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Select the Right HVAC Training Course near Dunlap TN

Picking the right HVAC training course is a critical first step toward a rewarding career in the heating and cooling industry. As we have addressed in this article, you need to pick a technical school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the HVAC trade. Other features to look for are sufficient hands-on training and state-of-the-art facilities. You should go to each of the schools in person 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 training and the interaction between them. In addition, inquire about scheduling choices and whether or not 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 proper questions as we have detailed in our checklist for assessing schools, you’ll be able to filter your options so that you can make an educated decision. With the proper training, hard work and commitment, you can ultimately become a licensed HVAC technician in Dunlap TN.

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