How do I Choose the Best HVAC School?

Tess C. Taylor

When choosing the best HVAC school, there are several qualities to look for. The goal of attending an HVAC learning program is to obtain the necessary skills to be successful in performing HVAC work or running a business, therefore finding a school that provides the right learning opportunity is vital. It is not a good idea to choose an HVAC school based on cost alone, but rather on the reputation and quality of the coursework that will lead to a good career after completion.

HVAC schools prepare technicians for working on heating and air conditioning systems.
HVAC schools prepare technicians for working on heating and air conditioning systems.

Generally speaking, taking courses at an HVAC school is similar to learning any labor trade such as carpentry or electrical contracting work. The majority of all HVAC programs are based on hands-on learning with classroom support. Once a certain level of learning is experienced, a student of an HVAC school can expect to be prepared to take an HVAC certification exam in order to become licensed.

HVAC schools often offer courses in carpentry.
HVAC schools often offer courses in carpentry.

When choosing an HVAC school, it is important to determine if you will learn more by taking classes or by working as an apprentice for an HVAC firm. Taking classes at a school should elevate and accelerate your learning curve rather than hamper your learning process and the time it takes to become employed as a licensed HVAC technician. Consider what learning opportunities may exist with local companies or if learning can be accomplished with a combination of on the job training and classes.

The choice of a quality HVAC school may be as simple as finding out from local HVAC companies what the preferred program is for new hires. There may already be HVAC technicians that can offer insight into the kind of learning you need to be successful later on in a career that the schools cannot share. In addition, you will want to ask the potential HVAC schools you are considering what their graduation to hiring ratio is and if there are job placement services offered to students that complete the HVAC program.

Another consideration when choosing an HVAC school is whether or not the school offers a program that is approved by the local licensure board in your region. Taking an HVAC course may seem like a good idea, especially one that offers an accelerated learning plan, but it’s vitally important that you will be training on all the topics needed to be successful when taking the license exams.It is essential that you take coursework that prepares you for all necessary exams, so that you can be working as soon as possible.

Most education at HVAC schools is based on hands-on learning combined with classroom support.
Most education at HVAC schools is based on hands-on learning combined with classroom support.

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Discussion Comments


This is a very good question to asked for those looking for a HVAC school. They should really know how to balance things out on where's the best school or training center for them. So thanks for taking time to share it here. I'm kind of late in noticing this, since I just lately really got into HVAC.

Is there such a thing as online HVAC school? This seems like it would be some much more convenient, but if I went online I'm not sure I would learn everything I need to know.

How common is it for HVAC school to feature on the job training?

In my experience working in the trades and other technical industries, being on a job site and seeing experienced professionals work is the most valuable training you can get.

But a lot of schools keep kids stuck in a classroom working on example equipment that gives them no idea of how the real thing works.


How easy is it to get scholarships or other forms of financial aid to go to HVAC school? Does anyone know of an organization that offers grants or tuition assistance?

I really want to go back to school but I haven't been able to figure out how to afford it. Even if I take out loans I don't think it will work. I have some experience with HVAC but I really need to get certified if I am going to turn this into a career. Any suggestions?

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