Accredited HVAC Schools in Aurora, CO
Accreditation involves an evaluation of the quality of an educational institution’s program by an independent agency. The evaluation typically includes both the curriculum and the instructors. When choosing a school, it is essential to determine if it is accredited and by whom.
Two industry organizations evaluate and certify HVAC programs. The Partnership for Air-Conditioning, Heating, Refrigeration Accreditation (PAHRA) has awarded accreditation to Front Range Community College in Fort Collins, and HVAC Excellence has accredited Pikes Peak Community College in Colorado Springs.
Please note that all programs below are accredited by one of the two above entities or another reputable regional organization recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.
Pickens Technical College
The college offers a certificate in HVAC/R technology that prepares students for entry-level positions as residential technicians. Coursework is taught using state-of-the-art computer simulation programs, hands-on training in the lab, and classroom lectures.
The curriculum covers basic electricity, introduction to service tech training, fundamentals of gas heating, residential load/duct design, servicing forced air systems, basic refrigeration, refrigerant recovery training, troubleshooting & customer service, as well as an independent study project.
Students complete 35 credits to earn their certificate and are qualified to sit for industry-based certifications such as the EPA Certificate Universal and the 10 hour OSHA Certificate.
- Location: Aurora, CO
- Accreditation: Commission of the Council on Occupational Education
- Estimated Time to Completion: One year
- Estimated Tuition: $220 to $230 per credit
Front Range Community College
Front Range offers an HVAC/R degree program and four certificate programs. The HVAC/R fundamentals certificate is 15 credits and includes four classes: an introduction to air conditioning & refrigeration, basic refrigeration, basic electricity, and electrical components.
The residential HVAC certificate builds on the fundamentals program with 20 additional credits in advanced HVAC, international residential codes, air conditioning, hot water heating systems, troubleshooting, customer service, and communication skills. The light commercial HVAC program consists of 37 credits and the commercial refrigeration consists of 28.
The HVAC/R degree program includes all of the coursework required for the certificate programs. In addition, students must complete an internship or capstone project; and general education coursework in English, mathematics, science, and an elective. They complete 60 credits to earn their degree.
- Location: Fort Collins, CO
- Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission; PAHRA
- Estimated Time to Completion: AAS degree (four semesters); residential HVAC (three semesters); light commercial (three semesters); commercial refrigeration (two semesters); HVAC/R fundamentals (one semester)
- Estimated Tuition: Resident ($153.35 per credit); non-resident (629.25 per credit)
Emily Griffith Technical College
Emily Griffith Tech is a vocational college that offers an HVAC/R undergraduate certificate program. Students attend classroom lectures and follow up with hands-on training in an innovative lab. Students learn skills in fabrication and piping, including brazing, soldering, PVC piping, and threading.
Coursework is scheduled during the day as well as during the evenings. The 46.5-credit curriculum covers safety training for the trades, basic refrigeration, electrical components, electricity for HVAC/R, fundamentals of gas heating, advanced air conditioning, hot water heating systems, refrigerant recovery training, HVAC/R systems troubleshooting, and more.
Upon successful completion, students will be able to take up roles such as HVAC service technicians, building engineers, maintenance technicians, commercial refrigeration technicians, and temperature control technicians.
- Location: Denver, CO
- Accreditation: Commission of the Council on Occupational Education (COE)
- Expected Time to Completion: 10 months
- Estimated Tuition: $7,939
Lincoln College of Technology
Lincoln Tech offers an HVAC/R diploma program with day, afternoon, and evening classes. The program includes coursework on green technology and energy auditing that is designed to improve the marketability of technicians. Students learn through hands-on training in fully equipped labs and classroom lectures.
The program comprises 47 credits. The curriculum features instruction in electricity, introduction to climate control systems, HVAC and HVAC/R basics, air conditioning design and layout, commercial refrigeration control, commercial refrigeration design, warm air heating, and energy efficiency.
Graduates are qualified to take industry exams, such as EPA Section 608 certification, and seek entry-level positions as technicians.
- Location: Denver, CO
- Accreditation: Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC)
- Estimated Time to Completion: 40 weeks
- Estimated Tuition: $23,220
Red Rocks Community College
The Red Rocks Community College offers an associate of an applied science degree program and several certificate programs for aspiring HVAC technicians. Curriculum for both certificate and degree programs are updated as needed to incorporate evolving energy efficiency requirements. All programs prepare graduates for employment.
The college offers the following certificate programs:
- Refrigeration Level I – AHRR Certificate (11 credits)
- HVAC Fundamentals – AHRF Certificate (15 credits)
- HVAC Control Technician – CTHM Certificate (18 credits)
- Refrigeration Level II – CTHO Certificate (23 credits)
- Forced-Air Heating – AHRFH Certificate (30 credits)
- Hydronic Heating – AHRHH Certificate (30 credits)
- Refrigeration – AHRR Certificate (31 credits)
- Air Conditioning – AHRA Certificate (37 credits)
The curriculum for each certificate varies, but all are designed to teach the basics relevant to the particular skills in the program title. For example, the refrigeration level II certificate requires prior completion of the refrigeration level I program.
The associate of an applied science degree program consists of 62 credits including courses such as fundamentals of gas heating, air conditioning systems, piping skills for HVAC, heating controls, servicing forced air systems, basic sheet metal, electricity for HVAC/R, and mechanical codes, among others.
On successful completion of the program, graduates can take up roles such as air balancing technicians, facility maintenance, air-conditioning technicians, heating technicians, service representatives, and refrigeration servicing technicians.
- Location: Lakewood, CO
- Accreditation: The Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
- Expected Time to Completion: Up to two years, depending on the selected program
- Estimated Tuition: Resident ($153.35 per credit); non-resident ($629.25 per credit)
Pikes Peak Community College
Pikes Peak Community College offers an associate of applied science degree in HVAC/R technology and the following three certificate programs:
- Direct Digital Controls Certificate (15 credits)
- Industry Upgrade Certificate (18 credits)
- Residential HVAC Certificate (35 credits)
The direct digital controls certificate prepares students for entry-level employment in the area of environmental controls as they pertain to the HVAC systems. It includes courses in the survey of electronics and building automation (installer, service, and advanced operations).
The industry upgrade certificate is ideal for those who are currently employed in the HVAC/R field wanting to upgrade their skills. Coursework includes direct digital controls, heating for commercial, advanced air conditioning, residential heat pump service, advanced refrigeration, and an internship.
The residential HVAC certificate qualifies students to seek entry-level positions as apprentices or helpers. The curriculum includes electricity for HVAC/R, basic refrigeration, fundamentals of gas heating, piping skills for HVAC, refrigerant recovery training, HVAC/R controls, load calculation & duct design, mechanical code, and customer service.
The HVAC/R degree program includes all courses mentioned above with the addition of commercial heating, advanced HVAC/R, hot water heating systems, heat pumps, an internship or sheet metal fabrication, computer applications or computer literacy, communication, technical writing, math, and workplace psychology. Students complete 68 credits to earn their AAS degree.
- Location: Colorado Springs, CO
- Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC); HVAC Excellence
- Expected Time to Completion: AAS degree (two years); certificates (one to three academic terms)
- Estimated Tuition: Resident rate without COF ($247.35 per credit); Resident Rate with COF ($153.35 per credit); non-resident Rate ($629.25 per credit)