The NATE Certification Program


NATE or North American Technician Excellence, founded in 1997, is the largest independent non-profit certification body for HVAC technicians. The entire HVACR industry governs, operates, owns, develops and supports the NATE certification organization, headquartered in Arlington, VA. NATE certified technicians have attested to their skills and knowledge of modern increasingly sophisticated HVAC systems by passing a nationally respected and recognized test.

What is NATE Certification?

Concerns that people involved in installing and servicing HVAC systems lacked proper knowledge and experience led to the development of NATE certification more than 15 years ago. Prior to the establishment of this certification program, contractors and customers were very unhappy with low quality of service, recurring callbacks and added costs, while manufacturers were suffering unnecessary and expensive returns of products that were not defective. Therefore, a team of industry leaders came together to discuss and find solutions to these concerns.

NATE certification tests symbolize real world working knowledge of heating and cooling systems. Designed by a team of industry experts nationwide, the NATE exams exemplify heating and cooling subjects pertinent to contractors, manufacturers, educators and utilities alike. All the tests are knowledge-based, multiple-choice, rigorous, and validate a technician’s skills and knowledge.

Candidates must earn service and/or installation certification in one or more of these specialty topics:

  1. Air Conditioning
  2. Heat Pumps
  3. Air Distribution
  4. Oil Heating
  5. Gas Heating
  6. Hydronics Oil
  7. Hydronics Gas
  8. Commercial Refrigeration
  9. Light Commercial Refrigeration
  10. Senior HVAC Efficiency Analyst
  11. Ground Source Heat Pump Loop Installer

What Does NATE Certified Mean?

NATE certified means that a technician has the experience, skills and knowledge to handle the installation, repair and maintenance of any type, make, or model of heating, ventilation and air conditioning system. The benefits of NATE certification are extensive and impact many groups of people including employers, technicians, manufacturers, utilities, educators, consumers, and the entire industry.

NATE technicians are preferred among employers and customers, generate more income for themselves or their employers, and require fewer callbacks. Consumers prefer certified technicians because they are looking for well-trained, knowledgeable, highly experienced professionals who will offer the most reliable comfort solutions.

If you need to make sure that you are getting the best out of your heating, ventilation and air conditioning system, call an NATE certified service technician and schedule a maintenance inspection.