Online HVAC courses are typically offered as part of distance learning HVAC technician certificate and diploma programs. These programs and courses provide students with basic heating, ventilation, air conditioning, and refrigeration skills. Students should look for programs that meet the educational recommendations of leading HVAC/R organizations, such as North American Technician Excellence (NATE) and Air-Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA). No prerequisites are usually required for entry.
Some of the most commonly offered online HVAC courses are listed below.
Students are introduced to the HVAC industry, units of measurement, pressure, air works, gas works and heat energy. Much of the class is spent learning the essentials of HVAC/R safety.
Lessons in HVAC/R electricity range from energy and atomic theory to basic and parallel circuits. Students will study alternating current, magnetism, transforms and capacitors. Other topics include how to use, diagnose and replace hermetic, capacitor and three-phase motors.
In this class, students will study the properties of air and learn how to measure air flow as well as the quantity of heat in the air. Heat and conduction loads, ventilation and infiltration loads, duct and complete heat loads are studied, along with solar gain.
In this class, students will study the full range of topics for refrigeration, including physics of refrigeration cycles, methods of metering and how cycles are measured. Condensers, compressors, piping systems and controlling capacity are also covered.
Students will learn about the benefits of oil and gas heating, as well as boilers and hydronics (using water to transfer heat). Specific topics include the construction of oil burners, methods of igniting gas, and how to troubleshoot theses specific types of heating systems.
Heat Pumps and Accessories
In this class, students will learn what makes a quality heat pump and what it does. The installation and components of a heat pump and its three modes -- cooling, defrosting and heating -- are studied, as well as basic troubleshooting. In addition, students will learn the categories, characteristics and components of HVAC systems.
Distance learning programs for HVAC usually are available at the certificate and diploma levels. Some distance learning programs of this kind are offered fully online, allowing students to train in the HVAC vocation at their own pace.