In HVAC Technician Training? Discover 5 Types Of Systems You’ll Work With

April 30, 2024

HVAC technician working on an air conditioning system after completing his HVAC technician training

HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning) systems are integral to maintaining comfort in homes, offices, and other buildings. If you’re currently in HVAC technician training or considering this career path, it’s necessary to understand the various systems you’ll encounter in the field. 

Remember, each type of HVAC system offers unique opportunities for technicians. Becoming proficient in these systems ensures you can handle various situations and meet your future clients’ needs. This blog post highlights five common types of HVAC systems you should be familiar with as a budding technician.

1. Be Familiar With Split Systems During and After Your HVAC Technician Training 

Split systems are the most prevalent type of HVAC system in residential settings. Just as we highlighted in our HVAC technician courses at NATS, they are called “split” because they consist of components distributed both inside and outside the home. 

The typical setup includes an outdoor unit containing the compressor and condenser coils and an indoor unit that houses the evaporator coils and air handler. This system is often paired with a furnace or air handler that circulates air throughout the building. As an HVAC technician, you must master both components’ installation, maintenance, and repair.

2. Hybrid Systems

Hybrid systems function similarly to split systems with a twist — they incorporate a heat pump that can provide heating and cooling. This system uses a furnace and a heat pump, which helps save on energy costs. 

The heat pump operates on electricity and can heat and cool your home. Still, during colder weather, the system switches to furnace mode, usually powered by gas, making it more energy-efficient. Training in hybrid systems will involve understanding how to switch between the two energy sources seamlessly and efficiently.

3. Ductless Mini-Split Systems

Ductless mini-splits are becoming increasingly popular due to their efficiency and the ability to control temperatures in individual rooms. These systems do not require ductwork; they have an outdoor compressor, condenser, and one or more indoor air-handling units.

These units are connected by a conduit, which houses the power cable, refrigerant tubing, and a condensate drain. Installing and maintaining ductless systems during your HVAC technician training is crucial as more homes and businesses seek flexible and economical heating and cooling solutions.

A ductless mini-split system to be explored in HVAC technician training
Learn to install and maintain systems during your HVAC technician training.

4. Packaged Heating & Air Conditioning System

Packaged systems are typically found in buildings requiring more space for a split system’s separate components. In a packaged system, the compressor, condenser, and evaporator are all housed in a single unit, which is usually located on the roof or a concrete slab near the building’s foundation. 

These units often include electric heating coils or a natural gas furnace, eliminating the need for a separate indoor furnace. Training will involve understanding how to safely install and maintain these larger units, often in challenging environments.

Packaged heating and air conditioning systems to be explored in HVAC technician training
Packaged heating and air conditioning systems are tremendously popular, as you’ll discover in HVAC technician training.

5. Geothermal Heat Pump Systems

Geothermal heat pump systems are considered one of the most cost-effective and sustainable options. These systems utilize the earth’s stable temperature to provide heating, cooling, and even hot water. 

The system consists of an indoor handling unit and a series of pipes buried in the ground, known as a ground loop. Geothermal systems are highly efficient because they transfer heat between your home and the earth with a heat pump. 

As these systems gain popularity for their energy efficiency and low operational costs, expertise in installing and maintaining them can be particularly valuable.

Interested in an HVAC technician diploma?

Contact NATS for more information.

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