As a homeowner, you’ll likely suffer the nail-biting experience of selecting an hvac company to tend to one of the most expensive appliances in your home. And many of the companies you’ll peruse will tout ‘NATE certification’ online (or on their apparel). Sounds like a good thing, right? But do you really know what it means?
What is “NATE”?
NATE is the North American Technician Excellence (NATE), the nation’s largest non-profit certification organization for HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) technicians. Founded in 1997, it is nationally recognized and respected as the largest, most popular, and widely attained certification in the industry. NATE certification is not legally required to become an HVAC technician, but membership has its benefits…
NATE certification applies to individual technicians – NOT the air conditioning company. Technicians who earn NATE certification must pass a knowledge-based exam that identifies their real-world, working knowledge of HVAC systems. Developed and supported by industry professionals, the test and subsequent certifications were created to bring professionalism and high-quality standards to the industry, as well as make it easier for consumers to identify quality HVAC service professionals. This means in choosing a NATE certified technician, you’re ensuring the best installation or air conditioning service available, better system performance and efficiency, and enhanced system lifespan.
How is NATE Certification Achieved?
NATE certification is no easy task. Because of their rigorous nature, a minimum of one-year of work experience is recommended before attempting NATE certification tests. Tests include not only core knowledge ranging from basic construction, electrical, and scientific knowledge, but also include tool and safety essentials, as well as testing on how to achieve desired interior home comfort conditions. In addition to these core tests, technicians then choose to earn ‘Installation’ and/or ‘Service’ certification in an array of specialty areas ranging from air conditioning installation, distribution, and service to oil and gas heating installation and service. Some technicians (most of whom have at least five years’ experience) may also choose to earn ‘Senior Level Technician’ status, encompassing two specialty areas of certification, alongside a highly-challenging HVAC analyst efficiency exam.
NATE Certification Doesn’t Last Forever
Tests must be periodically retaken, and minimum continuing education requirements met every two years in order to maintain certification. This is to ensure certified technicians remain up-to-date on the latest in HVAC technology and industry knowledge, and ensure reliable HVAC service for consumers. If all technicians who represent a company are NATE certified, you can rest assured that the company highly values the proven knowledge and skill of its workforce, and you’ll be receiving the highest quality service available.
Not All Technicians May Be NATE Certified
HVAC companies can advertise NATE with just 50% of technicians bearing certifications – so be certain to stipulate your desire for a NATE certified pro for your equipment.
You have a lot invested in your HVAC system. Protect it with the help of the friendly, trustworthy, knowledgeable, and 100% NATE-certified staff of H & H Heating & Air Conditioning. Contact us for superior service today.