By Ron Walker
I have worked in the HVAC industry for over twenty years while living in Washington, Montana, and now Florida. In my experience, most HVAC technicians are poorly trained and are making the same mistakes over and over again out in the field. It’s not totally their fault, it’s the training they have received.
Here’s a typical scenario that occurs – After graduating from a 2 year HVAC course, you apply for a job, and get hired on as an HVAC Technician. If you’re lucky, you get a week or two to “ride along” with the lead technician. During this “orientation,” you usually end up observing the tech’s work, filling out necessary paperwork and carrying tools. Your hands-on training time was really just about learning the ropes and filling out paperwork. When it’s time for you to be on your own, you may get reprimanded because you “can’t fix much of anything.” Even though you attended a two-year program, you have forgotten much of what you learned and need to brush up on the “need to know” information. (Unfortunately, many techs do not want to share what they know for fear of being surpassed.)
Another scenario quite possible is that you start out new in the filed as a “helper” with no previous training. After several months, you work your way up to a “technician” position – your training has come from your fellow technicians who may have been fabulous or may have had some bad habits and incorrect information. This is all you know, so you continue to repeat their bad habits.
Unfortunately, I saw both of these situations occur on a regular basis. Sometimes you are lucky, like I was, and you have a great technician teach you the right way, but it doesn’t happen often.If you didn’t learn the science and theory of HVAC and have a good understanding of it when you did your training, you will be at a great disadvantage when you get out in the field. That foundation of knowledge can make or break you as a technician.
As a service manager, I spent years training my techs to be better so they would really understand the important concepts of refrigeration, troubleshooting, and electrical. As they progressed, they became better technicians and better people. It was very rewarding to all of us. Along the way, I developed and collected training materials that, if you stacked them up, are about 4 feet high and span many bookshelves!
I developed this training program in order to share my knowledge and help you learn HVAC the right way and from the start!
In our HVAC Technician Course, you will have reading assignments, written assignments, videos, supplementary information not included in your textbook, and HVAC simulated exercises to help you learn. When I say “learn”, I mean really understand the science and theory of our trade. If you work hard and really apply yourself, with some added experience, you will be able to fix any HVAC system.
My goal is to improve the HVAC industry by teaching men and women like you how to become the absolute best technicians you can be. I love to teach and help others. I will teach you what you need to know to be a great service tech and help you when you need help. All you have to do is ask. This is truly what I love to do!
Ron Walker – Course Developer