Online HVAC Classes and Career Education at Home

Students learning to install and maintain heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration (HVAC/HVACR) systems can take classes via distance learning; hybrid programs are the most typical. Both introductory and more advanced courses are available.

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Online Courses in HVAC

The core online coursework addresses a range of topics. Courses generally include the following:

  • Fundamentals of HVACR: This course will cover the necessary tools and skills needed to work on heating and venting, air conditioning and refrigeration systems. Equipment and safety practices are typically addressed.
  • Heat Pumps: Get information about heat pump installation, components and troubleshooting. Find out about different modes such as heating, cooling and defrosting.
  • Electrical Components and Motors: This online course will address theories and components of electrical motors, covering diagnostic processes, starting systems and safety practices.
  • HVAC System Design and Installation: This course teaches about the design of HVAC systems, such as duct design and unit placement.
  • Refrigeration Systems: Students in this course will learn about the operations and maintenance of air conditioning and refrigeration systems. Basic troubleshooting and the proper handling of refrigerants may be covered.
  • Lithium Bromide Absorption Systems: Featured online, this course shows students how lithium bromide acts as the absorbent in absorption refrigeration. This class will cover the maintenance and operation of these systems as well.

Program Information

Students commonly pursue either a certificate or an associate's degree in HVAC technology, and some programs do feature online coursework. However, this is a hands-on field, so in-person training or an internship with a local HVAC company may be required. Programs differ in their face-to-face classroom attendance requirements, and students should consult with school advisors or the department scheduling office. Coursework is typically supplemented with Web presentations and video segments, such as a demonstration of optimizing an air conditioning system.

Applicants should look for programs accredited by organizations such as the Partnership for Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Accreditation. Several states require HVAC technicians to be licensed and to pass examinations in their specialty, which may require a minimum term of service working in the field. All technicians who handle refrigerants need Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) certification.

The majority of online programs in HVAC technology involve an in-person component, whether through a certificate or associate's program. Topics of study include installation, heating pumps, refrigeration and electrical components.

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