So you want to learn HVAC. One of the things that most Americans rely on during extreme weather is the HVAC. Almost every home, school, office building, and restaurant has a HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) system to regulate indoor temperature. You can take away different luxuries from people but not the AC.
The need for heating and cooling will never go away. With the rising cost of energy, Americans are always looking for efficient ways of heating and cooling. This means that the demand for HVAC professionals will only continue growing.
Importance of HVAC Systems to Homeowners
In today’s fast-paced lifestyle, health and comfort often go hand in hand. Hampton Roads homeowners and renters want comfortable homes with bearable indoor air where they can relax and recharge their bodies, other benefits of HVAC systems include:
- Protecting people from chilling and sweltering
- Improving indoor air quality
- Increasing comfort
- Enhancing lifestyle
- Saving energy
Importance of HVAC Systems to Workplaces
- Employees work longer
- Increases concentration
- It’s better for customers
Components of a HVAC System and How They Work
The hot and humid weather in Hampton Roads places a lot of demand on HVAC units. To become a HVAC professional, you need to understand how these systems work. Some of the essential components of HVAC systems include:
Furnace: This large appliance requires substantial space and is normally located in the cellar, attic, basement or a big closet. This component works by burning gas oil or other fuels, or drawing electricity to heat the air passing through, and then distribute it into different rooms in the building through the HVAC.
Thermostat: This is the most visible part of a HVAC system. It is often set on an easily accessible wall and it can be pre-programmed or set manually to the desired level of temperature. When the temperature becomes too hot or too cold, the thermostat triggers the evaporator coil-condenser or the heat exchanger to circulate cool or warm air.
Heat exchanger: Every furnace has a heat exchanger which is mainly made of steel sheet. The purpose of this component is to transfer heat when the furnace is automatically activated by the thermostat to transfer warmth into the air. This is a very important component in the HVAC system and should always be kept clean.
Evaporator coil: This A-shaped component performs the opposite task of a heat exchanger. It cools the temperature when the thermostat is set to do so. The evaporator coil is located in a metal enclosure and works similarly to a car radiator by producing cool air that is distributed throughout the ducts.
Condensing unit: This component is installed outside and contains refrigerant gas. The heat exchanger cools the refrigerant to a liquid which is then pumped by the condensing unit to the evaporator coil and then changed into a gas again.
Refrigerant lines: These are narrow lines of copper or aluminum that transport evaporated refrigerant gas to the condensing unit where it is changed into a liquid and then transported back to the evaporator coil.
Ducts: These are long conduits made of aluminum, flexible plastic, steel, fiberglass, polyurethane, or fabric that transport warm or cold air from the HVAC system to different parts of a building.
Vents: These are rectangle outlets that transfer cool or warm air from the ductwork into different parts of a building.
Benefits of Learning HVAC in a Formal Setting
If you have decided to pursue a career in the heating and cooling field, you can choose between formal education and a lengthy apprenticeship program which can last from 3 to 5 years. Apart from taking a shorter time, formal HVAC training has the following benefits:
Certification: We live in a world where hundreds of people are applying for the same job positions, and it is important that you stand out. Employers know the importance of certification as it acts as proof that you have the needed skills and capabilities.
Networking opportunities: You have heard the saying, “it’s not about what you know, but who you know.” Although it’s essential to have a solid knowledge base, networking could help you get your dream job.
Hands-on experience: HVAC trade school should give you hands-on experience that will help you get a real feel for your future career.
5 Important Skills to Succeed in HVAC Class
- Time management
- Customer service skills
- Mechanical skills
- Physical strength
- Troubleshooting skills
Are you ready to get started? A HVAC career could make you an invaluable tradesperson in a job market that has a high demand. If you want to earn an Associate of Occupational Science Degree in HVAC Technology, consider ATI for the education you need. If you have any questions, connect with ATI today.