As technology continues to grow in every sector, so it continues to do so in the HVACR industry. HVACR, which stands for heating, ventilation, air conditioning, and refrigeration, is an industry that relies on trained technicians to effectively function, which is why educators and other professionals must always be looking for better ways to train the incoming generation’s technicians.
Staying ahead of the curve is tough, especially considering the advent of computer technology. While the fundamentals and the basics of HVAC systems have not changed, the introduction of new technologies has made the learning curve for technicians and providers much steeper than it used to be. Formerly speaking the manufacturer controlled almost all of the equipment the same way. These days, however, high-end equipment continues to throw curve balls at HVAC instructors: thermostat wires are out, data highways are in, educators say, and the difference between pieces of equipment made by different manufacturers continues to grow.
Making sure that trained technicians – or technicians-to-be – know their stuff is becoming more difficult, professionals and educators have identified a few ways to maintain their edge. While it may sound trite, keeping it simple is one way to eliminate problems before they begin. As the systems and controls for HVACR systems become more complex, educators are realizing how crucial it is to rely on the fundamentals during the training process. Newcomers may be eager to move past the intro stuff and work on higher-tech projects, but without a foundation in the basics, many students will not have that information to fall back on.
The ways that new technicians learn have been changing, too. Although the majority of classes are still in person, the growth of online classes has changed the way that many instructors design and implement their curriculum. Still, one thing is certain: fundamentals are essential. This is because while our methods of heating will continue changing, the physics of thermodynamics and electrical theory will always be the same. The complexities of our changing HVAC products notwithstanding, heat will continue to flow to cold, superheat and subcooling remain foundational concepts, and technicians should have an understanding of psychrometrics. Other fundamentals, like electronics and a basic understanding of math, have been touted by experts as being the keys to understanding complex issues. While having an eye toward innovation and the hottest new developments is important, they say, new technicians would be best served to remind themselves that having a solid grounding in the basics is the surest way to success in the field of heating, ventilation, air conditioning, and refrigeration.