Welcome to the World of HVAC-R

Just curious? Eager to jump in? Looking to get ahead? Whatever your reason, we would like to help you learn what you need or want to know. We have seen a need to help a variety of individuals with various kinds of knowledge surrounding what is perhaps the most complex of all building trades.

I recently took a burgeoning HVAC-R apprentice, still in trade high-school, on a trip to one of my larger locals supply houses. I used the opportunity to talk to him about just how broad a field HVAC-R really is. This supply house has an aisle or two for electrical supplies like breakers, boxes, switches, and wire. They also have several aisles dedicated to sanitary plumbing like waste vent PVC, copper, and pex for potable water, and fixtures. “The plumber is going to visit here, the electrician will go to an electric supply house, but most of what he needs in small quantities is here” I said to the young man. “The HVAC-R tech has to be competent with everything in this store and about twice as much you don’t see here” I added.

Indeed, I can’t think of another trade that required to be as knowledgeable and diversely trained as an HVAC-R professional. Just scratching the surface you need at least basic understanding of sheet metal, metal bonding techniques, airflow science, fluid mechanics, thermodynamics, refrigeration cycles, psychrometry, complete grasp of both power and control electricity, networking, and computer modeling and direct digital controls(DDC). You can deep dive into each of these topics (and we will in the institute) but you cans start to see how this is getting complicated, and fast.

At the Institute for Heating and Cooling, we are endeavoring to help anyone with a desire to learn about this amazing field. Take a look at our course catalog and membership options and see if this might be the right for you. If it’s not, let us know why so that we may be able to expand our offerings in the future.

Jeffrey Brideau

I'm a graduate of the University of Massachusetts at Lowell with a BS in Mechanical Engineering. While there I had some fun exploits at NASA in the Reduced Gravity Student Research Opportunities Program (we got to play in a weightless environment!). I had a few engineering jobs while at school doing programming for automation and the design of fluid metering and pumping equipment. My first full-time gig was as a test engineer for a semiconductor equipment company that made ion implanters (particle accelerators used to make computer chips). These machines had every nature of science and mechanics on-board from cryogenic refrigeration, to robots, to fiberoptic networks. I made my way up the food chain there before hanging a shingle over my own door at Intelligent Heat and Power, LLC. I've spent the last decade plus making a mark on the HVAC-R industry.

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