Troubleshooting seminar continues tour of success

Honeywell's The Source gas ignition training will be held this year in 37 North American locations.
This fall, Honeywell will once again offer The Source, a residential gas ignition training program that shares with contractors the latest developments in gas ignition and helps them develop better troubleshooting skills.

Now in its ninth season, The Source is a nationwide effort, with classes set to take place in 37 cities across the country starting at the end of August.

Honeywell credits The Source’s long run and great amount of exposure to a unique curriculum and hands-on experience.

Retired training manager and current training consultant Jim Cole developed the program. “It started out with the objective to improve control and troubleshooting skills of techs,” Cole said.

The first seminar took place in Minneapolis, MN, but instructors soon found out that only a small number of people could afford to make the trip. With this in mind, Cole decided to take his class on the road. Along with several other instructors, he decided to outfit a 26-ft single unit truck with 18 boilers and heaters, as well as two-dozen tabletop lab trainers and an array of audio-visual equipment.

Cole explains that the classes are 50% theory and 50% hands-on. The one-day class begins in the morning with lecture, and includes audio-visual equipment and PowerPoint presentations to help students focus on theory.

Classes average 45 students with a maximum of 60 students. Instructors make use of wireless microphones to better include students in the lecture.

“We want to have a dialogue, not a monologue,” said Bill Ribble, 35-year Honeywell employee and current instructor for The Source.

Hands-on work

The second part of the seminar enables contractors to put what they have learned from the lecture to use. Contractors begin to work on tabletop lab trainers to familiarize themselves with specific tools and equipment.

Next, students are invited to test their troubleshooting skills by working on a number of problems with boilers and heaters. The Source provides enough equipment to allow two students to each piece.

Besides offering one of the only touring training seminars with hands-on equipment, Cole attributes the success of The Source to its experienced instructors.

“We’re all retired Honeywell guys,” Cole said about the instructors. “We have senior salespeople with tech background, some engineers, and some who invented products for Honeywell.”

“What makes the program work is that the teachers are all seniors. They grew up with hvac,” Ribble said.

Ribble also points out that the instructors begin each course at ground zero to ensure that everyone receives the same training.

Tuition for The Source is $180. This includes lunch, training notes, and reference materials.

To register or to find a complete list of dates and locations for The Source, visit For further information, call 800-345-6770 ext. 7184.


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