When you’re looking to hire an HVAC company you want to know that their technicians are trained on the latest technology, are fully knowledgeable about their craft, and are familiar with best practices within the industry. Otherwise, how can you trust that they’ll get the job done correctly?
When you go to a doctor, you look for their medical degree on the wall. This indicates they’ve passed a rigorous training and examination process that proves they’re qualified to give medical advice.
That’s what NATE (North American Technician Excellence) certification is to HVAC. While it’s voluntary, and not mandatory like getting a medical license is, technicians that want to demonstrate their command of the field are encouraged to get certified.
Technicians are awarded a NATE certification after they’ve passed a detailed examination that demonstrates the scope of their knowledge. NATE certification is necessary because it lets the consumer know they’re dealing with a knowledgeable, skilled HVAC technician.
It’s possible that a technician can be skilled and not have a NATE certification, but then consumers must take them at their word. Certification provides tangible proof.
How Does Nate Certification Work?
The certification exam tests both general and specialized knowledge. Technicians can opt to test for one of ten different specializations:
- Air conditioning
- Air distribution
- Commercial refrigeration
- Gas heating
- Heat pumps
- HVAC efficiency analysis
- Hydronics gas
- Hydronics oil
- Light commercial refrigeration
- Oil heating
Techs can only test for one specialization at a time, but they can opt to take the exam multiple times to achieve various specialization certifications. The more specializations a tech completes, the more of an expert they are.
The test is broken into two sections, a written part, and a practical part. Technicians must receive a passing grade in both to be certified. Techs are also required to keep up with current trends within the industry to keep their certification.
How Important is Certification?
It’s critical. NATE certification sets the benchmark for excellence in HVAC maintenance, service, installation, and repair. Technicians that manage to pass the rigorous tests demonstrate a high degree of competence within their field, a firm grasp of HVAC fundamentals, and the advanced concepts and methods within their specialization.
Achieving certification also demonstrates that the technician takes themselves seriously as a tradesman. They’ve spent the time training and have invested in themselves, and followed through successfully. This indicates a strong work ethic and other desirable character qualities that you want in someone that will be working in your home.
When you hire a NATE certified HVAC technician, you can be confident you’re getting a qualified worker that will do the job properly the first time. You should take NATE certification seriously and make sure any technicians you hire have passed the test.
We Take NATE Certification Seriously, Too
At Summit Heating & A/C all of our technicians are NATE certified or in the process of becoming so within the first six months of their date of hire. We recognize the value in hiring and developing highly skilled workers to be the very best at what they do. NATE certification helps assure that when we send a team to work in your home, you will be completely pleased with the results.
If you need work done on your AC system this spring, call on any one of our NATE-certified experts today.