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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    28

    Should I leave a $21 hour job?

    I am thinking about crossing over to controls - I prefer electrical over compressor change outs but know that I may have to take a cut in pay while training. Is this smart? Who has crossed over from conventional HVAC to controls and can tell me if they made a good choice. Is the type of work better?

    Thanks

    hotandcoldair

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Baton Rouge, Louisiana
    Posts
    3,811
    You have to like it, you have to want to learn it, you have to spend alot of your personal time, you have to love it, you have to want it, you have to wake up in the middle of the night and read goofy forums with wierdos with names like ChrisW, Crabmaster, Orion, Osiyo, Dapper, Amigo, Kontrolfreak, klrogers, Matrix, that work on systems that you don't work on or don't have proper access to and want to learn or in the case of Tridium have more experience and have helped you learn FASTER cause your the only one that knows it where you work and you have no one to look to.

    Be prepared to stay late and get there early, on your own time to move up through the ranks, know how to use a computer, read any manual you can get your hands on, buy controllers off Ebay so you have something to monkey with.

    Be prepared to go home with your head hurting worst than your back every did, laying awake at night running and rerunning logic through your head to make sure the mechanical is side is protected and is working at the fullest efficiency.

    Now, if you have said yes to all that we can start getting deeper into what your asked(if you answered no to any, we already have those guys and they don't cut it with the ones of us that do what needs to be done)

    Its not about the pay I work with guys that love changing and rebuilding compressors, that wasn't my idea of fun, but each person was different. About 8 or 10 years into my career as a HVAC mechanic we picked up a Trane Tracker system and someone had to work on it, I always liked computers, I was pretty smart, and it was something different. After getting the manuals on the system on my own, buying the cables, I went out there and plugged in and fixed the system that day and I was hooked(jobsite had a modem, I actually dialed up the site on the weekend and renamed every unit according to where it served and took a floor plan and transcribed to the floorplan for free, just to have the chance to learn. After that day I worked to do controls full time, it took me 5 to 7 years but I finally made it and I have never looked back-and I was a good hvac mechanic.

    You have to do what you do because you like it, not because of the things you mentioned(of course location and money ain't half bad).

    BTW heres a PS, if your lucky enough to work with one of the aforementioned guys or someone like them and they tell you to do something a certain way, your job is not to ask why can't we do it this way, your job is to do it the way they tell you, it will help you in the long run. No one wants something they worked so hard for ruined or changed or not listened to because you come in and think your way is better.

    Good luck and I hope this answers your question.
    Quote Originally Posted by MatrixTransform View Post
    very soon it is you that will be pwned

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    28
    joey791 -

    thanks, going to your sight right now to add it to my favorites list, next step ebay to buy some used controllers...

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    28
    You said "know how to use a computer" - you must mean more than posting to threads. What sort of computer knowledge do I need to brush up on?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    361
    Quote Originally Posted by hotandcoldair View Post
    You said "know how to use a computer" - you must mean more than posting to threads. What sort of computer knowledge do I need to brush up on?
    Learn basic computer networking for a start. I've seriously had people apply that can't even set a static IP in a PC. I can teach a monkey how to do most controls, but when you're on the fly, you don't always have the time to teach basic stuff that can be learned from Google.

    Joey gave you a pretty excellent rundown on what to expect. The one thing he stated though that you will really need to consider is are you willing to sacrifice the time away from your family for your job? Sometimes in the controls world, you can't just walk away at 5:00 if you're working on a building. There are going to be more long days than easy days.

    If you're in the SLC area send me a PM or an email. I used to know some people in the area that do a lot of controls that might be able to point you in a direction of companies that may be looking for help. But like I said, with 9 kids, I would weigh very heavy on your decision of how much time you will want to dedicate to learning. Very few companies are going to send you off to training to get into the control field until they see you making a serious commitment. And it may take a couple years of working on your own time to learn and absorb knowledge. Controls isn't something you normally just pick up one day and start running with it if you want to be successful and make money at it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    28
    hotandcoldair@gmail.com

    My kids are older now - five are adults so I can handle the time committment. Until recently I worked another job at night.

    I definately get the sense that there is going to be a lot of commitment on my part first. That is why I am really interested in hearing from people who have made the switch. I am not afraid of the effort, I just dont want to get there and feel like I have made a mistake.

    Before I got into HVAC I was a car tech and I always got the really hard electrical nightmares and drivability cars. I love figuring out problems and I love tech so it seems like this is a good avenue to pursue.

    I am in Utah County just south of SLC - any help would be much appreciated.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    28
    You mentioned get some manuals, where and what? I have been trying to get some training but that seems almost impossible. Our company doesn't work in controls, and the training seems to be open only to customers of the local distributors. I think that I need to get some basic training under my belt so that I can get a job with a controls contractor. I need to find some online training, manuals, whatever, any suggestions?

    Checked out your site - I have nine kids. Seven boys and two girls, and I am a Boy Scout Leader - glutton for punishment I guess

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Baton Rouge, Louisiana
    Posts
    3,811
    Quote Originally Posted by hotandcoldair View Post
    You mentioned get some manuals, where and what? I have been trying to get some training but that seems almost impossible. Our company doesn't work in controls, and the training seems to be open only to customers of the local distributors. I think that I need to get some basic training under my belt so that I can get a job with a controls contractor. I need to find some online training, manuals, whatever, any suggestions?

    Checked out your site - I have nine kids. Seven boys and two girls, and I am a Boy Scout Leader - glutton for punishment I guess
    Awesome, always happy to have another dad with us, the internet is littered with mom's sites but there aren't any places for dads to go to unload and talk about dad stuff, thats why we started the site.
    BTW the guy I started it with is also a Marine, make sure to sign up at least, there are boards you can't see unless you are a member

    First you need the bible-

    https://customer.honeywell.com/resou...s/77-E1100.pdf

    Next are you looking for a job or have an offer, I understand where your at but what is your roadmap to where you want to go?
    Quote Originally Posted by MatrixTransform View Post
    very soon it is you that will be pwned

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    28
    Ok here is the plan:

    After determining that there were no companies falling over themselves to give me an opportunity, and that local distributors protected their training classes as if the nuclear launch codes would be revealed...I decided to try and gain as much knowledge as possible on my own in hopes that someone would either respect my initiative or take pity on my poor misguided attempts to break into controls and give me a job.

    After securing this fantasy job my boss would clearly see my high level of intelligence (in the Plan I am really smart) and would consider me a valuable asset and absolutely critical to the companies success and his personal advancement. He/she would then send me to much training and team me up with the best tech they had who by the way is friendly and loves to train newbies who may one day threaten his place at the top.

    That is pretty much the Plan. Ideas?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Kansas City, Kansas, United States
    Posts
    13,817
    omg
    lol
    lmfao
    rofl!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    in my plan i was really tall!!!!!!!!!!!!!



    Quote Originally Posted by hotandcoldair View Post
    Ok here is the plan:

    After determining that there were no companies falling over themselves to give me an opportunity, and that local distributors protected their training classes as if the nuclear launch codes would be revealed...I decided to try and gain as much knowledge as possible on my own in hopes that someone would either respect my initiative or take pity on my poor misguided attempts to break into controls and give me a job.

    After securing this fantasy job my boss would clearly see my high level of intelligence (in the Plan I am really smart) and would consider me a valuable asset and absolutely critical to the companies success and his personal advancement. He/she would then send me to much training and team me up with the best tech they had who by the way is friendly and loves to train newbies who may one day threaten his place at the top.

    That is pretty much the Plan. Ideas?
    I WILL SELL WORK,GENERATE BUSINESS, GO GET NEW CUSTOMERS!
    YOU SHUT THE HELL UP AND QUIT RUNNING YOUR MOUTH!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Wa
    Posts
    113
    I started in the HVAC trade after going to a trade school at age 19. At about 26 after many compressor changes, and repairs I started into controls. I always had a higher than average skill in the electrical side of the trade. So I started with install, then moved to small computer tasks VAV boxes stuff like that. I really had no computer skills, so I bought my first home computer and just started playing with it to learn. I can remember my wife coming into the room I was in ,and saying OMG!! what are you doing?? As I had the hard drive out of our new computer. Fast forward to age 37 I have been doing mostly controls for about three years now, I have faced people who didn't believe in me, ones that won't share knowledge, and that has only driven me to be better. The one thing that a company can never stop is what you learn. I have built trainer boards paid for by me, many hours of my own time building program just to get better. It really is alot of personal investment, but to me very rewarding. The best control guy to me is a mix of mechnical knowledge, computer skills, and a drive to be good at it . So good luck, and prepare for you brain to hurt!!!!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Kansas City, Kansas, United States
    Posts
    13,817
    maybe theres an opening on fantasy island???????
    I WILL SELL WORK,GENERATE BUSINESS, GO GET NEW CUSTOMERS!
    YOU SHUT THE HELL UP AND QUIT RUNNING YOUR MOUTH!

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    1,445
    Quote Originally Posted by supertek65 View Post
    maybe theres an opening on fantasy island???????
    Are they hiring?

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