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February 10, 2023 Issue
NATE Partners with PNNL to Incorporate Decarbonization Topics Supported by the U.S. Department of Energy in NATE Certification Exam
Exam North American Technician Excellence (NATE) is proud to partner with the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) to update the Heat Pump specialty NATE certification to include decarbonization curriculum supported by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). NATE worked with PNNL to update the Heat Pump specialty certification to incorporate the decarbonization curriculum topics into the job task analysis for the certification. The updated job task analysis now includes new guidance on smart diagnostic tools, upgrading fossil fuel heating systems to electric heat pumps, and cold climate heat pumps.
NATE is now working with its Technical Committee to update the Heat Pump specialty exam questions to match the updated job task analysis. The NATE Technical Committee is made up of experts from across the HVACR industry and guides NATE’s exam updates and new exam development. NATE expects to release the updated exam in early 2023. “In order to certify the best technicians in the industry, it is vital that we understand and recognize how industry trends, evolving best practices, and new technical knowledge are affecting our technicians’ work. Due to rapidly changing technologies in the HVACR industry, we must continually evaluate our certification standards to remain at the top of the field,” explained NATE COO John Lanier. “The Pacific Northwest National Laboratory is a leader in sustainable energy technology and innovation. By partnering with PNNL to incorporate decarbonization topics, NATE is ensuring that we are staying ahead of the curve on important environmental changes in our industry.”
Two Ways to Become NATE Certified
NATE now has two certification pathways for HVACR technicians: the Certified HVAC Professional (CHP-5) and the Traditional Pathway. NATE’s goal with the CHP-5 is to offer technicians different pathways to NATE certification so they can choose the exam pathway that best fits their level of experience and learning style. With the CHP-5, technicians can earn their NATE certification through a series of five 30-question exams, each on a different subject domain: HVAC Fundamentals, Electrical and Controls, Comfort and Airflow, Installation, and Service. Technicians can take the exams in any order they choose and can take up to six months between each exam to study and prepare. The NATE Traditional Pathway consists of the 50-question Core Exam and a 100-question Specialty exam. Technicians can choose between 13 specialty exams with an emphasis on installation or service.
Contractors: Sign up as a NATE Testing Organization
Eligible contractors can save time and money by ordering exams directly from NATE to test their technicians. As a NATE Testing Organization, you can set your own exam times to best fit your company’s schedule. To register, you must complete a free NATE Testing Organization application. The application is available online at www.NATEX.org. To become a Testing Organization, you must employ at least five technicians, have an individual who can register and act as proctor for the exams, have the ability to conduct at least one test session per year, and have space such as a training or meeting room to conduct exams.
For more information, reach out to NATE at askNATE@natex.org.
November 11, 2022 Issue
NATE Works with Opinion Research Company to Conduct Technician and Contractor Survey
This past year, NATE worked with Decision Analyst, an independent opinion research company, to conduct an anonymous survey of technicians and contractors to better understand technician certification needs. The survey is part of NATE’s ongoing efforts to understand how NATE training and testing aligns with the career development path of technicians today. Among the contractors and technicians surveyed, NATE certification was valued the most among HVACR certifications (59% among contractors and 86% among technicians) and the survey found that four out of five contractors prefer for their technicians to be NATE-certified. Contractors explained that they see their NATE-certified technicians as better prepared, more confident, and more satisfied with their job than non-certified technicians. The survey also looked at the impact of technician training and certification on employee retention. The survey showed that four out of five NATE-certified technicians have received some form of assistance from their employers — and 84% of the companies surveyed that employed NATE-certified technicians provided some sort of assistance to their technicians during the certification process. NATE plans to use the survey to inform its work over the coming months and help contractors provide better training and resources for their technicians.
For more information, contact NATE’s marketing manager, Daisy Weill, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
May 13, 2022 Issue
NATE Exams Approved by Virginia Board of Education
The Virginia Board of Education recently announced that three NATE certification exams will be a part of the state’s approved Industry Certifications for the 2022-23 school year. Now Virginia post-secondary students can earn their NATE certification as part of their career and technical education graduation requirements. The three approved exams are the Air Conditioning Service, Gas Heating Service Heat Pump Service specialty exams. Visit the NATE website for more information on these specialty exams and NATE certification.
New Courses Live on NATE Training Academy
In February, NATE partnered with Interplay Learning to create NATE Training Academy, a new online training platform. The comprehensive online courses are all available on-demand and can be taken at any time. All courses are interactive and immersive –and include field-like 3D and VR simulations, videos, and knowledge checks.
NATE Training Academy currently offers courses to prepare technicians for the Certified HVAC Professional (CHP-5) certification exams. The platform launched with courses that covered two of the CHP-5 exams: HVAC Fundamental and Service. On April 21, NATE Training Academy launched courses for the Installation CHP-5 exam. Courses on the two remaining CHP-5 exams will be released in the coming months, and all CHP-5 courses will be available by summer 2022.
A New Way to Connect with NATE
There is a new way to contact the NATE customer service team. You can now text us at (703) 945-1914 to connect with a NATE customer service representative. The NATE customer service team is available 9 AM to 5 PM Monday through Friday. If you prefer phone or email communication, you can also call us toll-free at 877-420-6283 (NATE) or send us an email at askNATE@natex.org.
April 8, 2022 Issue
Eligible HVACR Contractors Encouraged to Become a NATE Recognized Training Provider
If you provide training for HVACR technicians, you can apply to become a NATE Recognized Training Provider (RTP) and register your courses with NATE. Manufacturers, wholesalers and distributors, contractors, association partners and trade association chapters and educational/training facilities are all eligible to become a NATE-Recognized Training Provider. By registering your courses with NATE, NATE-certified technicians can automatically receive continuing education hours (CEHs) towards their recertification.
The NATE website provides all the necessary tools and information need to submit courses, pay and renew courses, and to submit attendance records via the myNATE portal. Get started today with the free Recognized Training Provider application at www.natex.org.
Spring Recertification Reminder
Next week, NATE is mailing out reminder to technicians that need to complete their recertification this spring to maintain their NATE certification. NATE Technicians must earn 16 hours of training related to their certification specialty or in general areas such as safety, electricity, controls, codes and regulations every 2 years in order to maintain their certification. Technicians can track their credit hour progress through their myNATE account. For more information about the recertification policies, fees, and common FAQs, visit NATE’s recertification webpage. If you or your technicians have any questions about the recertification process, reach out to NATE at recertify@NATEX.org or call NATE customer
service at 877-420-6283.
NATE Training Academy and CHP-5 Certification
NATE has partnered with Interplay Learning to create NATE Training Academy, a new online training platform for HVACR technicians. NATE Training Academy provides technicians a way to study and prepare for the Certified HVAC Professional (CHP-5) exams. Course subjects cover each of the CHP-5 exam subject domains, HVAC Fundamentals, Electrical and Controls, Comfort and Airflow, Installation, and Service. The comprehensive online courses are all available on-demand and can be taken at any time. The interactive and immersive online courses include “field-like” 3D and VR simulations, videos, and knowledge checks.
NATE launched the Certified HVAC Professional (CHP-5) in the summer of 2020. With the CHP-5, technicians can earn their NATE certification through a series of five 30 question exams, each on a different subject domain: HVAC Fundamentals, Electrical and Controls, Comfort and Airflow, Installation, and Service. Technicians can take the exams in any order they choose and can take up to six months between each exam to study and prepare.
NATE’s goal with the CHP-5 is to help HVAC technicians feel more prepared while studying for their certification by grouping together exam subject areas. “We wanted to create a full development certification path that mirrors the on-the-job training that many technicians receive,” said John Lanier, NATE COO. “The platform gives technicians the opportunity to demonstrate their competency each step of the way” as they take each exam.
Technicians can take the CHP-5 in-person with any NATE Testing Organization, or complete the exam online using NATE’s new remote Live Online Proctoring. For more information, contact NATE’s Marketing Manager, Daisy Weill at email@example.com.
February 11, 2022 Issue
PHCC Announces 2021 National Apprentice Contest Winners
The Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors — National Association’s (PHCC) Educational Foundation recently announced the winners of the national plumbing and HVAC apprentice contests. The recipients include Karin Dahlin from Minneapolis Pipefitters local 539, who won first place in the HVAC apprentice contest. The contest was held October 21 and 22, 2021 on the tradeshow floor during the PHCC—National Association’s CONNECT 2021 event. A total of sixteen plumbing and seven HVAC apprentices from across the nation took part in the contests.
North American Technician Excellence is a proud sponsor of the PHCC apprentice contests. The contests are made possible by the generous support of several industry sponsors who provide monetary support and in-kind material and tool donations.
Study Guide for Low-GWP Refrigerant Certification Now Available
NATE is proud to introduce a new refrigerant certification exam. The exam is designed to validate a technician’s knowledge of the low-global warming potential (GWP) refrigerants becoming common in the HVACR industry due to new state and federal regulations.
While the new low-GWP refrigerants are more efficient, these products are also more advanced and complicated for HVACR technicians to work with. The NATE refrigerant exam is designed to ensure that HVAC engineers and technicians have the necessary skills and job knowledge to handle refrigerants of all types. The study guide is now available in the NATE Online Store.
NATE Training Academy Coming Soon
NATE has teamed up with Interplay Learning to create the NATE Training Academy, a new online training platform for HVACR technicians. NATE Training Academy is designed to provide technicians a way to train for NATE certification exams online at their own pace. The comprehensive online courses are all available on-demand and can be taken at any time. The interactive and immersive online courses include “field-like” 3D and VR simulations, videos, and knowledge checks.
Course subjects cover HVAC Fundamentals, Electrical and Controls, Comfort and Airflow, Installation, and Service. Courses for HVAC Fundamentals and Service will be available January 31, and all courses will be available by the end of May. For more information, contact NATE’s Marketing Manager, Daisy Weill at firstname.lastname@example.org.