HVAC Schools Near Me in Leitchfield KY 42754

How to Find the Right HVAC School near Leitchfield Kentucky

Leitchfield KY HVAC tech servicing AC compressorOnce you have come to a decision on a career as a heating and air conditioning specialist, the next step is to look for an HVAC technical school near Leitchfield KY. But with so many to pick from, how do you pick the right one to receive the training that you need? Some prospective students will make their decision based entirely on the price of tuition or how near the school is to their residence. While these are important factors to consider, they are not the only ones to take into account. Some of the other factors that you need to research are the graduation completion rates of the HVAC schools, their reputations, and if they are accredited by professional trade organizations. These and other benchmarks will be discussed in more detail later in this article. But before we discuss how to pick an HVAC vocational school, let’s look at what a heating and cooling specialist does to become a licensed skilled tradesman.

How to Become an HVAC Contractor in Leitchfield KY

Leitchfield KY HVAC tech servicing industrial furnacesHVAC is an acronym that is widely used in the industry that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC contractors provide services for the installation, repair and maintenance of air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, water heaters and heating systems. As skilled tradesmen, they are generally mandated to be licensed, however every state and local municipality has its own prerequisites. Earning professional certification is not mandatory, but a voluntary way for Leitchfield KY HVAC technicians to prove that they are exceptionally proficient and experienced in their area of specialization. There are several respected certifications within the field that are available. Below are some of the significant ones.

  • North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally recognized certification for HVAC techs. The certification is attained by passing a competency examination and may be earned in one or more specialties.
  • HVAC Excellence. This certification makes available both a professional and a master specialist credential. Two years of professional experience together with passing a comprehensive exam are required for the professional level certification. Master specialists must have 3 years of experience in addition to a passing score on the professional level examination. Similar to NATE, certifications are provided in several specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is required for specialists 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 could be required in your location, and you may also intend to acquire certification, it’s important that you pick an HVAC trade school that will train you for both. And since you will most likely be handling refrigerants, make certain that the program you choose readies you for passing the EPA Section 608 exams.

HVAC Degree and Certificate Courses

Leitchfield KY HVAC contractor installing residential water heaterThere are a number of alternatives 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, typically completed in just 6 months, though some programs are longer. A certificate will train you for the majority of HVAC positions, particularly if you are licensed and have certification applicable to the position. The degree programs can provide a competitive advantage in the job market and will deliver more extensive training than the certificate programs. Following is a brief summary of each option offered near Leitchfield KY.

  • Certificate. Usually requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are very popular among entry level commercial or residential HVAC professionals. They furnish a strong foundation of skills for job opportunities within the industry.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program supplies a more extensive knowledge of heating and cooling systems than the certificate program. Generally requiring 2 years to complete, a number of degrees feature 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 standard four 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 appropriate credential program will be based on what your long term career aspirations are, along with the time and money that you have to invest. One option is to start with a certificate or even an Associate Degree program, and after getting some experience in the trade in Leitchfield KY, subsequently returning to acquire 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 Leitchfield KYChoosing an HVAC program online is one option to getting your training and earning a certificate or degree. Nearly all schools will call for some attendance on campus to participate in practical training. A number also provide internship or work-study programs in addition to or in place of practical lab work. But since the rest of the classes can be participated in via the internet, this option may be a more practical solution for some Leitchfield KY students that are short on time. And some online degree programs are more economical than other on campus options. Even driving expenses from Leitchfield and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more budget-friendly. And a large number of online programs are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your career or family obligations 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 schedule.

Questions to Ask HVAC Certification Courses near Leitchfield KY

Once you have picked the type of degree or certificate that you desire to acquire, either on campus or online, you can begin to narrow down your selection of schools. As you are certainly aware, there are many HVAC trade schools in the Leitchfield KY area and across the USA to choose from. That’s why it is essential to have a checklist of important qualifiers when making school evaluations. As earlier stated in our opening paragraph, tuition and location will probably be the first 2 aspects you will take into consideration. Following are several additional ones that you need to explore before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  A large number of HVAC technical programs in the Leitchfield KY area have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They may attain Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to a specific program, for example HVAC technology. Make certain that the program and school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, for example the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping guarantee that you acquire a superior education, it can assist in obtaining financial assistance or student loans, which are in many cases not available for non-accredited schools. Additionally, many states require that the HVAC training course be accredited for it to be approved for licensing.

High Completion Rates.  Ask the HVAC schools you are looking at what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage of students who enroll in and finish the program. A low completion rate could signify that students were disappointed with the program and dropped out. It could also indicate that the instructors were not qualified to train the students. It’s similarly essential that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader list of alumni, which can result in more contacts for the school to employ 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 trade, but also that it has the network of Leitchfield KY HVAC employers to assist graduates acquire apprenticeships or jobs.

Apprenticeship Programs.  Most HVAC trade programs are taught in conjunction 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 trade unions. Check if the schools you are reviewing have working partnerships with local Leitchfield KY HVAC specialists. An apprenticeship not only provides a valuable experience by providing hands-on training, but it also furnishes employment opportunities and helps to establish relationships in the local HVAC professional community.

Modern Facilities.  Make sure that the campus facilities and the equipment that you will be instructed on are up-to-date and what you will be using in the field. If you are presently in an internship or an apprenticeship, consult with the HVAC tech you are working under concerning what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Leitchfield KY HVAC company if they can provide some tips. Additionally bear in mind that unless you are willing to move, the school needs to be within commuting distance of your Leitchfield KY home. Take note that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to moving costs there might be higher tuition fees compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s desirable that you receive as much individualized training as possible, which can be difficult in larger classes. Ask if you can monitor a few of the classes so that you can observe how large they are and witness first hand the interaction between students and instructors. Speak with some of the students and get their opinions relating to class sizes and instruction. Last, talk to a few of the teachers and find out what their level of experience is and what certifications or degrees they have earned.

Flexible Scheduling.  Confirm that the class schedules for the programs you are assessing are flexible enough to fulfill your needs. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Leitchfield KY, confirm that the programs you are reviewing provide those options. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, be sure that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Also, check out what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, sickness or family issues.

Attending HVAC School near Leitchfield KY?

Leitchfield, Kentucky

Leitchfield is in the eastern end of the Western Coal Fields in Kentucky and exhibits some karst topography. It is located along the Western Kentucky Parkway at the junction of Kentucky Route 259. U.S. Route 62 intersects Kentucky Route 259 at the middle of town. Leitchfield is situated between Rough River Lake to the north and Nolin River Lake to the south.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 10.9 square miles (28.2 km2), of which 10.8 square miles (28.1 km2) is land and 0.04 square miles (0.1 km2), or 0.38%, is water.[4]

Leitchfield's radio stations are 104.9 WKHG-FM, a.k.a. K105, a Top 40 station, and 870 WMTL-AM, which plays country music and also 103.9fm the moose is a country channel that plays popular sports talk show Kentucky Sports Radio hosted by Matt Jones. Both stations are owned by Heritage Media of Kentucky. Also, WKHG carries the radio sports broadcasts for Grayson County High School, the University of Kentucky, and the Tennessee Titans.

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Select the Right HVAC Certification Training near Leitchfield KY

Picking the right HVAC training course is an important beginning toward a gratifying career in the heating & cooling trade. As we have discussed in this post, you should pick a trade school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the HVAC community. Other things to search for are plenty of hands-on training and modern facilities. You need to visit each of the schools in person that you are most interested in to tour the campus and speak with both the faculty and current students. Try to get a feel for the quality of the instruction and the interaction between them. Additionally, inquire about scheduling options and if night or weekend classes are available if needed. And don’t forget to inquire about financial assistance and student loan options too. If you ask the right questions as we have detailed in our checklist for evaluating schools, you’ll be able to narrow down your choices so that you can make an informed decision. With the appropriate training, hard work and dedication, you can eventually become a licensed HVAC specialist in Leitchfield KY.

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