A Brief History of HVAC for Students in HVAC Technician Training

April 12, 2024

A pair of HVAC technicians troubleshooting an appliance after HVAC technician training

Just as the saying goes, to know where something is going, you have to know where it’s been. For students just starting their HVAC technician training, exploring and understanding the history of HVAC systems is crucial. It provides valuable context for their studies and sets the pace for future endeavours. 

HVAC technology has seen substantial advancements, transforming how we manage indoor heating, cooling, and ventilation. These innovations improve our living and working conditions and prepare us to meet the demands of future climate challenges. Because of this, it is important to look back at where it all began. Let’s explore a brief history of HVAC.

HVAC Technician Training Explores Its Ancient Origins

Our forebears were already developing basic HVAC systems before the first HVAC technician training program was even created. The ancient Romans represent a significant example of early recorded instances of designing heating and cooling systems.

In a system that has now been termed and acknowledged as a “hypocaust,” the Romans used to circulate hot air underneath their floors using a specific technique. The air was channeled through raised pillars, warming the room and delivering essential indoor comfort for its occupants.

The Romans were not alone, the Egyptians also used an interesting technique to cool indoor spaces. The use of wet reed mats to provide indoor cooling, which was then considered a unique evaporating cooling technique, harnessed the natural cooling effect of water evaporation.

An HVAC technician working on a project after completing HVAC technician training
The origin of HVAC systems is a key lesson taught in HVAC school.

How the Industrial Revolution Influenced Early HVAC Development

The advent of the Industrial Revolution in the 19th century sparked many significant advancements in heating and ventilation technology, especially steam heating. As industrial innovation and technology continued to pick up steam, so did steam heating systems. 

These steam heating systems depended on boilers to heat water and channel steam through pipes leading to radiators. These radiators then dispersed the heat across strategically placed openings to warm the rooms. Concurrently, mechanical ventilation systems became prevalent in Western homes, significantly advancing residential climate control. 

When Willis Carrier invented the first mechanical air conditioning unit in 1902, a new dawn in indoor climate control/conditioning beckoned. The entry of refrigerants, such as freon, in the 1930s would later boost the operational quality and efficiency of air conditioning systems, changing the game.

An HVAC technician examining a modern system after completing his HVAC technician training
HVAC college explores the role of the Industrial Revolution in the development of HVAC systems.

The Effect of Contemporary Technological Advancements

Over the past two centuries, HVAC technology has advanced quickly due to progress in engineering, materials science, and environmental consciousness. Innovations began with the introduction of freon-like refrigerants and were followed by advancements in digital controls, the integration of renewable energy sources, and improvements in energy efficiency. Such advancements include inventions like programmable thermostats for energy efficiency and the integration of smart HVAC controls for remote monitoring and automation. 

The HVAC industry’s focus has shifted entirely towards energy efficiency and sustainability. Smart HVAC controls and eco-friendly refrigerants are becoming more common, with innovative solutions continually emerging.

Students in our HVAC college learn all about these innovative solutions, with their coursework now focusing on things like renewable energy systems and energy-efficient HVAC technologies. 

Students from our training program applaud the quality of education and support they get. Jason Boyer is one of those students and a now-practicing technician. In his words, “I choose NATS because it is a hands-on school; they teach you what you need to know and you apply the knowledge in the lab, and there’s a lot of skilled technicians with the experience and know-how there.”

This emphasis on cutting-edge technology and sustainable practices ensures that our graduates, like Jason, are prepared to excel in their careers and lead the industry toward a greener future. At NATS, we pride ourselves on providing education that is both relevant and transformative, equipping students with the skills and knowledge to thrive in a rapidly evolving HVAC landscape.

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Considering HVAC School? 4 Advantages to Choosing a Career as an HVAC Technicia

November 02, 2021

HVAC technicians are experts in HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) systems, conducting installations, repairs, routine maintenance, and more. They may work with commercial, residential or industrial air conditioning systems, refrigeration systems–as well as systems of combined heating, ventilation, and cooling. After completing your HVAC training, you’ll be able to perform a range of duties, including the assembly and installation of different system components (vales, gauges, condensers, compressors, evaporators, etc.), and troubleshooting of HVAC systems to identify leaks or other issues. You’ll also perform maintenance tasks such as parts replacement, system calibration, and refrigerant refills.

If you’re considering a career as an HVAC technician, you might just be ready to start your training after learning about the advantages of this career path. Below, discover four of them!

1. HVAC School Graduates are In-Demand in Ontario

If you’re considering HVAC school, there’s never been a better time to enrol. According to JobBank Canada, job opportunities for HVAC technicians in Ontario will be good over the next three years, as retirements create new availability and employment growth creates new opportunities for work. Ontario’s construction industry is growing, and HVAC technicians will be needed to install and maintain the commercial and residential systems for each new structure. Thanks to investments in public facilities and commercial developments, HVAC technicians may also be able to find work supporting industrial projects.

Within Ontario, job stability for HVAC school graduates is high

2. HVAC Technicians Benefit from a Dynamic Career

As an HVAC technician, your job will never be boring. HVAC technicians benefit from the ability to perform many different kinds of work throughout their career, depending on their interests and whether they choose to specialize in a particular sector of the HVAC industry. HVAC technicians may work with fireplaces, furnaces, pool heaters, heat pumps, boilers, and refrigeration systems. What’s more, there are many advancements in technology making the work of HVAC technicians increasingly interesting. Smartphone-controlled heating and cooling systems, solar-powered air conditioners, and other innovations are continuing to shape the industry, promising an exciting future for HVAC technicians.

3. Grads of HVAC College Are More Active

Once you become an HVAC technician, you might be surprised by the benefits of the work to your physical health. Graduates of HVAC college have a highly active job, working both indoors and outdoors and travelling between different project locations. Rather than sitting around at a desk all day, you’ll be earning all the health benefits of a job where you’re constantly moving, such as a reduced risk of cancer and reduced risk of heart disease.

The variety of tasks HVAC technicians can expect make this a rewarding career path

4. As an HVAC Technician, You Have Many Work Opportunities

Once you become an HVAC technician, you don’t need to be restrained by a strict work schedule or an unvaried work environment. In fact, there are many different opportunities for work within the HVAC industry. As a technician in this trade, you may be employed by an HVAC system installation contractor, and you may also find work in different industrial settings, such as: engineering firms, retail, food wholesalers, and other operations. Additionally, after gaining experience in the field, HVAC technicians may choose to open their own business, installing, repairing, and maintaining HVAC systems for various clients and creating their own schedule. If you’re looking to enter a field where you’ll never get bored, becoming an HVAC technician might be right for you.

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If You’re Enrolled in HVAC Technician Courses, Discover 5 Signs of Low Refrigerant in a System

October 07, 2021

If you’re considering becoming an HVAC technician, you’ll be launching a career as an expert in the field of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems. Your expertise will enable you to perform services for clients such as installing HVAC systems, maintaining and repairing the systems, and troubleshooting problems within these systems. When servicing air conditioning systems during your career, one of the most common problems you may encounter is a low level of refrigerant within the system. 

Refrigerant, a compound which absorbs heat from the surrounding environment, is essential to the smooth operation of an AC system. Within an AC system, refrigerant is stored inside copper coils–taking in heat from the air in a home or other indoor space. The refrigerant is then distributed through the condenser and compressor, where it is converted from liquid to gas to liquid. The resulting hot air is blown outside, while another fan blows air over the cold coils containing the refrigerant and into the building. Given the importance of refrigerant in the distribution of cold air, when refrigerant levels are low, an AC system’s performance will be negatively affected. 

When refrigerant levels are low, it’s typically either due to a leak, or because the AC system was installed incorrectly. During your career as an HVAC technician, becoming familiar with the signs of low refrigerant in an AC system will help you to successfully identify and repair related issues before greater damage ensues. Below, discover five common signs of low refrigerant in an air conditioning system. 

1. After HVAC College, Look Out for Longer Cooling Cycles

If a client complains that it’s taking a particularly long time to cool their home, low refrigerant levels could be at fault. With low refrigerant levels, the air being blown indoors is warmer than usual, meaning that the air conditioning system has to run longer cycles to match the thermostat-designated temperature. After HVAC school, check the refrigerant levels of an AC system if the cooling cycles seem unusually long.

It may take longer for an air conditioner to cool a home when refrigerant levels are low

2. The Refrigerant Lines Freeze

Low levels of refrigerant can also have a negative effect on the AC system’s refrigerant lines, or evaporator coil. The evaporator coil is responsible for taking hot air from the indoors and adding it to the refrigerant. However, when refrigerant levels are low, the evaporator coil will become too cold, leading to a buildup of ice. Typically, this ice will start to spread to other parts of the AC system, including its surrounding components.

3. The Energy Bills Go Up

When a client complaining of higher energy bills requests your services, the air conditioning system’s refrigerant levels will be one of the first things you’ll want to check. Due to the longer cooling cycles which are needed to cool a home, the air conditioning system is working much harder than it should be. Since harder work translates to a greater consumption of energy, always remember to check refrigerant levels when a client’s energy bill spikes. 

A client’s energy bills will typically increase when there isn’t enough refrigerant

4. Lack of Cold Air

After HVAC college, it’s safe to suspect low refrigerant levels when an AC system isn’t blowing cold air. Because the cooling chamber contains more heat when refrigerant levels are low, it’s difficult for the system to adjust the temperature of the air it’s sending out. This causes the system to expel lukewarm rather than cool air–a problem which is more than inconvenient for those trying to keep their homes cool during the warmer months!

5. There’s a Hissing Noise

When refrigerant levels are low, one of the probable causes is a leak somewhere within the AC system. In the case of a leak, it’s likely that a hissing noise can be heard, indicating that refrigerant has escaped from the coils that contain it. The moment you hear a hissing sound coming from an air conditioner unit, check the refrigerant levels to ensure that there isn’t a hazardous leak.

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5 Qualities Shared By Successful HVAC College Grads

September 07, 2021

If you’re thinking about becoming an HVAC technician, you’ll be launching a rewarding and dynamic career within the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning industry. With the skills you possess, you’ll be able to provide essential services to clients–installing and maintaining both ventilation and air cooling equipment, as well as gas and propane heating systems. As an HVAC technician, not only will your technical skills be important, but so will your ability to interact with clients and provide quality, reliable service. 

Below, explore some qualities that will help you to succeed in the HVAC industry, both during your training and throughout the rest of your career.

1. Graduates of HVAC College Are Good with People

If you have strong interpersonal skills, you’re off to a great start! HVAC technicians interact with many different customers on a daily basis. Therefore, an HVAC technician must be able to speak with a friendly demeanor, listen to any requests or concerns, and provide all necessary information in a patient and comprehensive manner. Once you graduate from HVAC college, your ability to communicate actively with customers will help you to establish trust and earn you even more clients through word of mouth recommendations. During your training, consider building interpersonal skills in order to succeed throughout your HVAC technician career.

If you’re good with people, you’ll make a great HVAC technician

2. Successful Technicians Are Reliable

As an HVAC technician, clients are trusting you to perform a service for them. To gain their trust, you’ll not only want to possess the necessary skills and knowledge, but you’ll also need to provide reliable service. With this in mind, it’s important that HVAC technicians can prove to be extremely reliable, as this will help to enhance their reputation and establish customer loyalty. During your career, make sure to be on time to appointments, and notify customers if you’re running late or are unable to perform a requested installation or repair.

3. Attention to Detail Is a Quality Shared by HVAC Professionals

During HVAC school, you’ll learn about the importance of precision within the HVAC field. HVAC technicians must be able to use a number of tools and testing devices such as thermometers, pressure gauges, voltmeters, manometers, and more. With strong attention to detail, HVAC technicians can use these devices to measure and obtain information about electrical circuits, refrigerant pressure, air flow, and burners. As an HVAC technician, being attentive to detail will help you to accurately install and maintain the heating and ventilation systems you work with–ensuring that no mistakes are made due to incorrect information.

Successful HVAC technicians are attentive to detail

4. Preparedness Is an Essential Quality for HVAC Technicians

If you’re a highly organized person, you’ll excel in a career as an HVAC technician. These professionals must be prepared for a number of different appointments every day–showing up to each one equipped with the tools and equipment necessary to complete the job at hand. As an HVAC technician, preparation is key to being able to perform any installation or repair, as your ability to remember which parts and tools you need for specific tasks will ensure that you’re always providing a quality level of service.

5. A Good HVAC Technician Is Confident

There’s nothing more terrifying to a customer than an HVAC technician who seems unsure of their capabilities. As customers are trusting you to correctly install and repair the heating and ventilation systems they rely on, it’s important that you build the skills necessary to confidently address the needs of your clients. At the North American Trade Schools (NATS), you’ll receive hands-on training in the installation and maintenance of HVAC systems, equipping you with the knowledge to work confidently throughout your career. Consider training with NATS in order to launch a career as a capable and successful HVAC technician!

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A Guide to Sustainable HVAC Systems for Students in HVAC School

August 26, 2021

Sustainability is leading the conversation in most industries today. As with the majority of sectors in the construction and maintenance industry, the Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) market is under pressure to go greener. Sustainable HVAC systems are an important innovation for both the industry and our planet. Homeowners and technical workers can benefit from new technologies that reduce the environmental impact of HVAC systems while maintaining their design integrity. 

Students training for a career within the HVAC industry will study the installation and maintenance of different HVAC systems in residential and commercial environments. Gas codes and regulations are other important features of HVAC training. To get to grips with the evolving trends of the industry, read on for an overview of the benefits and concepts behind sustainable solutions in HVAC design. 

The Benefits of Sustainable HVAC Systems 

The drive to reduce energy consumption, greenhouse gases, and the use of fossil fuels are top concerns when it comes to sustainable design initiatives. Delivering hot water and heating to buildings produces a significant greenhouse gas footprint. Sustainable HVAC systems offer a solution to the environmental expense of traditional heating and cooling methods. HVAC systems such as heat pumps work by transferring heat between indoor and outdoor spaces to regulate the temperature of the building. In that sense, they are sustainable alternatives to boilers or furnaces that rely on fossil fuels. 

Students in HVAC school might be interested to know that sustainable HVAC systems save both energy and costs in the long run. Up to 30 percent of the energy generated for use in commercial buildings is wasted. On average, HVAC systems last up to 15 years–a long time to endure high energy expenses and greenhouse gas emissions. Both workers and homeowners can benefit from the reduced cost of climate control over the building’s life cycle. It’s important for construction and maintenance technicians to know which sustainable technologies provide the best return over time.

Students in HVAC school should consider the sustainability and cost-effectiveness of HVAC systems

Sustainable HVAC Solutions 

There are numerous ways to achieve sustainability in HVAC systems. Thermal air conditioning is a great way to conserve energy without sacrificing power and comfort. Instead of relying on electricity, these units use solar panels to draw energy from their surroundings–an efficient and cost-effective solution. 

Duct wrap is another staple of the HVAC industry that is used to reduce energy loss that can occur in air ducts. Unlike regular duct wrap, quiet duct wrap is made from recycled denim reduced from landfills. Quiet duct wraps also prevent irritants or other organic compounds from reducing indoor air quality. 

The dual-fuel heat pump is a great solution that uses a combination of fuel types. The dual-fuel heat pump uses both electricity and gas to generate efficient heating and cooling. For homeowners who are concerned about the reliability and power of sustainable systems, the dual-fuel heat pump is one to count on. The pump uses electricity above 1.67 degrees Celsius, but if the temperature drops lower, the pump resorts to gas to heat the home. In that way, sustainable systems provide powerful solutions without compromising energy-efficient efforts.

Quiet duct wrap and dual-fuel heat pumps are examples of sustainable HVAC solutions

The Future of Sustainability for Those in HVAC College

Students in HVAC technician courses will work with numerous types of equipment to construct and maintain HVAC systems–including: measurement gauges, refrigerant lines, and air ducts. Voltmeters, thermometers, pressure gauges, and other testing devices are used to check airflow, refrigerant pressure, electrical circuits, and other components. Knowing how to apply these tools and materials to sustainable solutions is valuable to stay ahead of the industry. To become more sustainable, construction technicians should consider the bigger picture and think in terms of building integration. By choosing the right products, materials, and building designs, technicians can push for a more sustainable future for the construction industry. 

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An Introduction to the Safety Equipment You’ll Need on the Job After HVAC School

July 06, 2021

If you’re considering launching a career as an HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) technician, you’ll be entering an exciting field where your skills will be in-demand. On the job, your duties might include installing HVAC units, conducting routine maintenance examinations, replacing broken components, and more. Throughout your career, it’s important to prioritize your safety, as HVAC technicians are often exposed to hazardous materials and conditions while on the job. Chemicals such as refrigerants and contaminants–including dirt and debris–are all common to encounter as an HVAC technician. With this in mind, it becomes key to wear the proper safety gear to protect you from harm. 

Read on to discover what you should have on hand to stay safe as an HVAC technician.

After Finishing HVAC College, Wear Protective Gear

As an HVAC technician, it’s important to wear clothing that protects you from exposure to both chemicals and contaminants. On the job, be sure to wear a long-sleeved shirt and long pants so as not to leave any skin vulnerable. Additionally, ensure that your clothing is free of synthetic fibers, as they’re more flammable. After graduating from HVAC school, it’s also important to wear the right boots, as proper footwear is necessary to protect your feet from the heavy machinery you’ll be working with. You’ll also need safety goggles to protect your eyes from debris, and earplugs to prevent hearing damage due to the power tools used in HVAC work. Lastly, a thick pair of gloves will keep your fingers safe from any injuries that could result from handling sharp wires or pipes.

Wearing protective gear will reduce your risk of harm on the job

Use the Right Tools

When you use the right tools, your safety will be enhanced throughout your career. There are a few critical tools that enable you to perform any job in adherence with industry standards—reducing the risk of malfunctions that might otherwise pose a threat to your safety.  As a graduate of HVAC college, you should always have the following tools in your bag:

  • Clamp metre
  • Anemometre
  • Wrench
  • Vacuum gauge
  • Refrigerant leak detector
  • Wire stripper

While it’s important to have these tools on hand, it’s important to examine the quality of your tools before beginning any repair or installation. By ensuring that your tools are in good working order, you’ll be able to avoid making any dangerous mistakes on the job. 

Using the right tools will enhance your safety during your career as an HVAC technician

Follow these Practices When Handling Chemicals

Throughout your career as an HVAC technician, you’ll be working with and transporting many different chemicals. In addition to wearing the right safety gear, it’s also important to know how to handle chemicals on the job to reduce your risk of injury. When using gas cylinders, make sure to inspect them before filling them up, and check to make sure there are no signs of leaks or damage. You should also not have gas cylinders in your van in hot weather, as this can increase the risk of explosion. When working with any detergents, refrigerants, solvents, or other cleaning liquids, make sure to wear goggles and a protective mask over your face to avoid  exposing yourself to chemicals.

With these safety rules in mind, you’ll be ready for a long career as an HVAC technician.

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3 Tips for Maintaining Propane Heating Systems After HVAC School

April 14, 2021

While propane isn’t the most commonly used source of energy for a home, its use has been growing in popularity in recent years. Propane is used to fuel both home-heating furnaces and water heaters. It is also beneficial due to the lower amount of greenhouse gas emissions it produces, as well as its potential as a less costly source of energy. In a propane heating system, propane is stored in a designated tank. This is fitted to a home’s gas line and then transferred to the furnace, which delivers heat to the rest of the home. 

Propane is a convenient source of heat for a home, but it’s important to know how to maintain a propane heating system once it’s installed to ensure that it remains safe and effective. If you’re interested in a career as an HVAC technician, read on to discover three tips for maintaining a propane heating system. 

When properly maintained, propane can be a great source of energy for a home’s heating

1. HVAC College Graduates Should Pay Attention to a Propane Heating System’s Pilot Light

Most propane heating systems operate through the use of a pilot light, which is a small flame that burns continuously. After HVAC school, it’s important to be familiar with how a propane heating system’s pilot light works in order to properly maintain these systems. In a propane heating system, the pilot light is located at the burner of the heating appliance that the propane fuel is being used for. The pilot light is also responsible for igniting the propane fuel to provide heat. 

When maintaining a propane system, check the colour of the pilot light. A pilot light’s flame should be blue in colour. But if it appears to be orange or yellow, the pilot tube may need to be cleaned. Additionally, if the pilot light frequently extinguishes, this could signal a larger problem with the propane heating system. In this case, all connections and tubes should be examined to ensure that there isn’t a leak.

2. A Propane Heating System Needs Regular Service

One of the most important things to know about propane heating systems is that they may require more regular maintenance than other heating systems. A propane tank can be regularly serviced by checking the tank’s fuel gauge. When this gauge indicates that there’s less than 20% of fuel remaining, it’s time for a refill. Additionally, it’s important to examine the tank itself regularly by checking the tightness of the connecting pipes and ensuring that there are sufficient levels of pressure. Make sure that the area around the tank is clear of any forms of clutter. If there are flammable materials in close proximity of the tank, remove them in order to reduce the risk of fire.

HVAC technicians can help to ensure that a propane tank is adequately serviced

3. Take Measures to Prevent Leakage

While a propane leak is uncommon, graduates of HVAC technician courses should be proactive in preventing leakage. A propane leak can be extremely dangerous, as propane is flammable and can increase the risk of fire within a home. The chances of a leak in a propane system can be reduced by tightening and protecting the propane tank’s fittings. Where the gas line connects to the propane tank, ensure that the connection is properly sealed by using a wrench to tighten the connection. If a leak is suspected, the main gas valve should be turned off immediately in order to safely address the problem.

When properly maintained, propane systems can be an efficient source of heat for a client’s home. During your HVAC technician career, take the above steps to ensure that your client’s propane heating system is working safely and effectively.

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Here’s What to Expect on an HVAC Unit Replacement if You Have an HVAC Diploma

February 09, 2021

When you replace an old HVAC unit with a new one, there are certain things worth keeping in mind. For example, many people tend to only replace their HVAC unit on rare occasions. However, having those units replaced in regular intervals can ensure that their HVAC unit is keeping them safe, healthy, and sufficiently heated and cooled. Some homeowners may also want a new unit to help them save on energy. With the right tools and knowledge, you can complete an HVAC replacement job that accomplishes each of these things.

Although replacing an HVAC unit involves a number of steps to complete before, during, and after the installation, these are some of the more important phases to remember during this process. Read on to find out what you can expect with regards to replacing HVAC units.

Preliminary Measures for HVAC Technician Training Students to Remember

Before the replacement process can begin, there are certain tasks to take care of. For one, you’ll need to assess both the home and the old HVAC system, and complete the necessary calculations and measurements. Once this has finished, you can determine how big the new HVAC system needs to be. Measure the square footage of the home to better understand how big the new unit will need to be, and how many tons of heat it can remove. You and the client will also need to determine how they will pay for the installation. Depending on the payment plan, they may put a down payment on the replacement prior to the installation. 

Complete the necessary measurements before installing a new HVAC unit

Upon completing your cost estimate, replacing the HVAC unit can go ahead. Complete a ductwork inspection, if necessary, and disconnect the unit being replaced after powering it off. If any parts of the interior, such as furniture, are impeding your ability to get the job done, move them away from your working area. Since HVAC technician training students will learn about installing many different types of systems during their studies, it’s equally important that they learn what’s necessary for the pre-installation phase.

The Installation Process: Out With the Old, In With the New

Once these tasks have been completed, the installation of the HVAC unit replacement can begin. When installing, remember to use dust covers and wear protective gear to prevent any direct contact with debris. Even if only one component of the HVAC unit needs to be replaced, you should still replace the entire unit so that its capacity for efficiency is optimal. Be sure to also cut off power from the old HVAC unit, flush any remaining coolant, take apart the old equipment, and then remove those parts to make room for new ones. The HVAC unit replacement can often be done within the day of installation, but can sometimes go beyond that if complications arise.

If only one part needs to be replaced, it’s still worth replacing the entire system

Students in HVAC college should also familiarize themselves with the parts that will be involved in the replacement. These parts include the outside compressor, thermostats, evaporators, air handlers, condensate pumps, and/or supply lines for coolant. Once the installation process is done, remember to put the new unit through a series of tests to make sure it works correctly and can sufficiently cool the home. Inspect the system to catch any possible issues, then add a new coolant and keep testing the unit until all systems look good. Lastly, remember to discard and/or recycle any old HVAC equipment being replaced. Explain to clients how the new system works, and recommend a timeline for their next replacement.

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Why Hands-On Training From Pros Makes a Difference to Students of HVAC College

January 19, 2021

hvac collegeWorking within the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) industry is a rewarding career path. However, it takes more than classroom learning to gain the confidence you need to feel comfortable on the job. In order to become successful in this field, it’s important that you also get hands-on training and experience. 

Being an HVAC technician is all about knowing how to diagnose a situation and use the correct tools and equipment to perform the task at hand–whether that’s installing, maintaining, or repairing a system. When choosing an HVAC program, make sure that you’re choosing one that offers hands-on training to equip you with the experience necessary to handle all kinds of situations. 

Here’s more on why hands-on training is necessary for aspiring HVAC technicians.

Hands-On HVAC Technician Courses Promote Problem-Solving Skills

A good HVAC technician should be able to apply the knowledge they learn in the classroom to real-world situations, and be able to actively solve the problem at hand. The only way to get better at problem-solving on the job is to gain experience at an HVAC college–offering students the opportunity to participate in hands-on training. At North American Trade Schools (NATS), students receive hands-on training in the lab in addition to the information they learn in the classroom. They can expect to work with testing devices and various types of equipment. This helps them to gain first-hand experience with common problems encountered on the job.

hvac school
With hands-on training, graduates can quickly apply what they’ve learned on the job

Greater Retention of Information

Learning by doing has been proven to be a fool-proof way to remember information. When engaging in hands-on learning, students enrolled in HVAC technician training have the opportunity to familiarize themselves with common materials and equipment of the trade, and get to practice using these tools. Because they’re learning by doing with hands-on training, students are more likely to retain what they’ve experienced, and can easily access and apply that knowledge to situations on the job.

Students Will Gain Familiarity with Safety Protocols

Within this field, there are always risks and safety hazards that may be encountered. Working within the real-world environment offered through hands-on training gives students in HVAC technician courses the chance to practice following safety protocols, and allows them to better understand the risks that go along with the job.

hvac technician courses
Hands-on training helps students learn important safety aspects of the job

Get Training From Industry Experts

As an HVAC technician student, much of what you learn will depend on the advice and experience of others. It’s important to get hands-on training from experienced teachers in order to learn as much as possible about the field. At NATS, the instructors supervising your training are industry experts. Input from these seasoned professionals proved invaluable to NATS welding graduate Emily Harrison, who said her “favourite thing about the campus was the knowledge of the teachers and how much practical work you were able to do. It was very helpful.” 

Receiving hands-on training from experienced instructors will ensure that all your questions are answered, making you that much more ready to tackle on-the-job challenges.

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The Biggest Benefits of Having an HVAC Career

December 16, 2020

HVAC Career

If you value doing a variety of work and are good with hands-on tasks, then chances are that a career in heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) could be a great fit for you. HVAC technicians are quick problem-solvers, possessing a solid understanding of mechanical systems and how best to install and repair them. They are relied on whenever the heating dies off or the air conditioner breaks down—and practically every modern building uses either, if not all, of these systems. 

Becoming an HVAC technician has many benefits, including the rewarding feeling of a job well done. Here are some reasons why becoming an HVAC technician might be a good idea for you!

Technicians Benefit of Short Training and Fast Results 

Starting your HVAC training is key for your success as an HVAC professional. And, unlike lengthy university programs that can take four years to complete, pre-apprenticeship training can be completed in significantly less time. 

Pre-apprenticeship training also includes plenty of hands-on work, rather than just sitting through long class lectures. As Jason Boyer, HVAC student at NATS, puts it, “I chose North American Trade Schools because it’s a hands-on school.” He adds, “They have the experience, they have the know-how, and you take what you can from them and apply it to your trade.” 

HVAC technician training
HVAC technicians need lots of hands-on experience to succeed in their profession

HVAC Careers Include a Variety of Work and Opportunities to Advance 

Every day on the job offers the chance to do something new—working in both indoor and outdoor settings while meeting all kinds of different people. This means you’ll have plenty of opportunities to stay active on the job. Each task will contain different challenges for you to overcome, turning every service call into an opportunity for a change of pace. It’s anything but your typical 9-5 office job!

HVAC is a diverse field, offering a variety of work for its professionals. Technicians work with a variety of heating and air conditioning systems, having been trained to install and maintain gas and propane heating systems and ventilation as well as air cooling equipment in residential and light commercial environments. As a result, technicians have room to advance their careers after years of training and earning specialized certifications.

HVAC Is a Highly Valued Service That Comes with Many Rewards

Contrary to what some might think, HVAC work is not seasonal—no matter the time of year, people often need help with their HVAC systems. Due to the nature of the work, technicians need a solid level of mechanical skill and technical ability. HVAC technicians are effective problem-solvers. They have to analyze entire HVAC systems to root out key causes of failure before knowing how to make the necessary repairs. Because the work they do is hands-on, they also get the satisfaction of seeing the concrete results of their actions after a job well done.

HVAC school
HVAC technicians provide valuable services that lead to personal and customer satisfaction


An HVAC career is service-oriented, leaving plenty of room for customer satisfaction. Technicians are often met with gratitude as they work to provide valuable service, keeping temperatures well-regulated in all kinds of environments—ultimately providing comfort and security for their clients. 

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