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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2019
    Posts
    22
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    Schooling or OTJ training

    So, I am trying to decide if I should enroll in HVAC school and spend 2 nights a week for the next 18 months trying to get a handle on this profession or just continue to learn through OTJ training and YouTube videos.
    While working through a previous employer, I got my 608 to do some light refrigeration maintenance. Mainly just swapping out failed compressors on small coolers and soda fountain equipment. About 4 months ago I decided to start working for a company doing new construction installation of HVAC equipment. I think Im catching on quickly but realize there is so lily has more to know and learn.
    I guess the question is, am I going to learn more in class over the next year and a half or on the job with some knowledgeable techs?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Broomall, PA
    Posts
    2,878
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    Union/school. The important thing is you learn the technically right way to do things and scientifically why. Then you can apply that with your work.
    Remember, if you're 'learning' from a hack out in the field, you'll only every be a hack. YouBoob is hit or miss.
    If I do a job in 30 minutes it's because I spent 30 years learning how to do that in 30 minutes. You owe me for the years, not the minutes.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Beatrice, NE
    Posts
    10,028
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    Yes, take the class and continue the OJT, they will teach much more faster than either alone.

    Be careful on the YouTube vids. There are some good ones and there are some that think they are good that are teaching it wrong. If you are learning how will you know?

    Also question everything a tech tells you. 1 year experience repeated 15 times is not the same as 15 years of experience.

    Lastly never quite learning. This industry never quits changing, so you can't quit learning. If you think of it as a puzzle, you will get the center pieces put together over time but you will never find the edge. You will also find the more you learn the less you know, meaning that you realize your depth of knowledge needs to keep increasing.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Southold, NY
    Posts
    25,585
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    Quote Originally Posted by Myhvacguy1 View Post
    So, I am trying to decide if I should enroll in HVAC school and spend 2 nights a week for the next 18 months trying to get a handle on this profession or just continue to learn through OTJ training and YouTube videos.
    While working through a previous employer, I got my 608 to do some light refrigeration maintenance. Mainly just swapping out failed compressors on small coolers and soda fountain equipment. About 4 months ago I decided to start working for a company doing new construction installation of HVAC equipment. I think Im catching on quickly but realize there is so lily has more to know and learn.
    I guess the question is, am I going to learn more in class over the next year and a half or on the job with some knowledgeable techs?
    http://www.ua.org/apprenticeship

    Get paid to learn
    Learn the right way

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    Dover, DE
    Posts
    11,665
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    Look at your local UA. You go to school and learn on the job.
    The guys going through our program earn college credits via the classes. And you don’t pay for school.
    I havent failed. Ive just found 10,000 ways that wont work. - Thomas Edison

    Its not whether you get knocked down, its whether you get up. - Vince Lombardi

    "In this house we obey the laws of thermodynamics" - Homer Simpson

    Local 486 Instructor & Service Technician

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Vancouver, B.C.
    Posts
    724
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    You learn different stuff in school than what you learn OTJ. You need to do both.

    I agree with the suggestions to join a union. You will often come out ahead if you take that path. In my area I dont see many non union companies that can match what a union has to offer ( when considering benefits, pay, security, and training).


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Quickly, I must hurry, for there go my people and I am their leader!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    St. Louis
    Posts
    1,269
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    Think you have to ask yourself do i want to know how these things work or how to fumble through. If you don't have the basics of refrigeration, electrical, soldering and how to work with tubing you will be at a loss. Can't imagine how many jobs I've been on that theory fix the problem. Oh by the way have not missed winter that I've not been back to school.

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