Technicians attending this year’s AHR Expo in Atlanta, GA, will have the opportunity to not only have a look at the latest hvac equipment on the market, they will also have the chance to get certified. North American Technician Excellence (NATE) and HVAC Excellence will be on hand for the event to test technicians in several areas of certification.


NATE offered its first testing session at last year’s event in Dallas, TX. Due to the turnout for the test, NATE has decided to offer its certification program for technicians in Atlanta.

The testing will begin at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 30, at the Georgia World Congress Center.

Technicians have several options to register for the exam. Advanced registration can be scheduled by calling NATE at 877-420-6283.

Technicians can also register through one of NATE’s sponsoring organizations, such as the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA), the Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors — National Association (PHCC-NA), or the Refrigeration Service Engineers Society (RSES), to name a few. These associations and many others will be promoting the testing to their members.

On-site registration will also be available starting at 8:45 a.m. the day of the testing.

Five separate specialty certifications will be offered, covering air conditioning, air distribution, gas heating, heat pumps, and oil heating.

Sessions will take four hours to complete, which will give technicians time to complete the core exam and a specialty exam; both are required for certification.

Carl Smith, marketing manger for NATE, says that the testing organization’s presence at the exposition gives technicians an opportunity they may not usually have.

“We know that some techs are really busy and haven’t had the chance to take the test,” Smith said.

Smith also says that NATE will continue to offer its services at hvac events. For example, one of the next NATE testing sessions will be offered February 26, 2001, at ACCA’s convention in Las Vegas. Smith says that convention exposure benefits technicians by making the testing readily available and also helps to expose NATE to more individuals in the industry.

According to NATE president Rex Boynton, last year’s testing in Dallas was a huge success.

“We administered more than 20 tests at last year’s AHR Expo and distributed thousands of pieces of literature detailing our year-round tests. We look forward to testing even more technicians at this year’s event,” Boynton said.


HVAC Excellence has been a presence at the AHR Expo for many years, but this is the first time that testing certification will be offered at the event.

According to Bill Allred, executive director of HVAC Excellence, offering the testing in Atlanta is “a gift and a thank you to the instructors and proctors who have made HVAC Excellence a success.”

Allred says that many schools that support the program HVAC Excellence offers will be bringing in their students by bus to take part in the testing. With this in mind, Allred expects a tremendous turnout.

The advanced technician competency certification program is free of charge to attendees of the expo on Jan. 29 and 30. Testing begins at 1 p.m., and walk-in registration will be offered.

All applicants must present an EPA certification card or a valid student ID from an hvacr school or training program in order to take the test.

The exams to be offered will include: Electrical Certification (which is a prerequisite to all other exams), Air Conditioning Certification (a prerequisite to all other cooling and refrigeration exams), as well as certification in gas heat, electrical heat, heat pumps, and commercial refrigeration.

All exams will include theory, service scenarios, and troubleshooting questions.

For more information, contact HVAC Excellence at 800-394-5268.

Publication date: 01/15/2001