Plumbing & Heating Program
Plumbing and Heating program is a five month course designed to prepare
students for jobs and apprenticeships in Alaska's workforce. Plumbing
and Heating technicians install, maintain, and repair high efficiency
heating, and ventilation systems. Students at AVTEC learn to
troubleshoot and repair electrical controls and residential wiring.
Their knowledge and skills are in demand throughout Alaska building and
maintaining systems for homes, offices and public structures.
AVTEC’s Plumbing and Heating program is credentialed through the Residential Construction Academy (RCA) program. The RCA certifies that the Heating and Plumbing program at AVTEC has exceeded industry standards in its instruction, curriculum, student, faculty qualifications, and facilities set forth by industry in areas of Residential Plumbing and Heating.
The blend of classroom instruction, lab, and live work practice, helps students to learn the necessary skills to become a Plumbing and Heating technician. The course is fast-paced and challenging. The student should have some mechanical aptitude, good mathematics and reading skills, and an ability to use their time productively. Students train on a variety of plumbing and heating systems including heat pumps, air distribution systems, control devices, control valves, electrical controls and motors.
Approximately 50% of the training is hands-on and 50% is classroom instruction. Training includes some outdoor activities, so students need appropriate clothing for cold and wet working conditions.
To provide students with the foundation knowledge and skills required for entry level employment in the Plumbing and Heating trades including methods for installation, maintenance, service, repair, and diagnostics of plumbing and heating equipment and systems.
Length of Course
679 clock hours, 97 training days
January and August
8:30am to 3:30pm, Monday through Friday
Reading and math skills at or above the 8th grade level. For specific program entry guidelines and testing requirements in reading and mathematics, contact the Admissions Office at (800) 478-5389.
TABE tests scores for this program must be:
Reading - 555
Students train on a variety of plumbing and heating systems. Heat control devices, control valves, electrical controls and motors, and electrical trainers are also used in training.
Physical requirements of the occupation are the ability to lift and carry 50 lbs., and stoop, crawl and walk continuously. It also requires being able to work from a ladder and on rooftops. The occupation may also require working outdoors where physical hazards may exist.
Accreditations and Credentials
AVTEC's Plumbing and Heating program is also accredited through the National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER) and the Residential Construction Academy.
Occupational levels of Plumbing & Heating: Upon successful completion of the training program, the following certificate levels are assigned based on the student’s demonstrated proficiency of the program’s competencies. Plumbing & Heating Technician, Plumbing & Heating Repairer, and Plumbing & Heating Assistant Repairer.
During the program, students receive training and testing for the following industry certifications:
Residential Construction Academy Exams
Students also complete the RCA exams which places them on a national registry that employers may access to verify skill levels.
To achieve a Plumbing and Heating certificate, students must complete the following requirements.
Program Content Detail
Participate in school safety orientation, complete achievement tests,
obtain First Aid & CPR card, complete basic applied mathematics, participate in
resume writing and job search training, and participate in interview and
communications training. Complete OSHA 30 hour certification.
Identify and properly use common plumbing tools; install piping materials and fittings, valves, faucets and meters; correctly size, install and maintain hot and cold potable water systems; size, install and repair drain, waste, and vent systems; and read and sketch plumbing and heating prints and isometric drawings. Install, maintain and repair commercial and residential plumbing fixtures and appliances. Identify and describe cross-connections, select control measure to eliminate backflow hazard. Install, maintain and repair residential water well systems.
Understand basic electricity theory and use of test instruments; build and test motor control circuits; perform electrical tests; analyze basic series, parallel and combination resistive AC and DC circuits; sketch wiring diagram symbols; maintain and replace solenoids, pressure switches, thermostats and relays; identify, select, install and maintain common electrical control devices; demonstrate circuit construction workmanship, techniques and practices; identify, install, and maintain common motors.
Understand thermodynamics and heat transfer calculations; install and maintain gas burning equipment; demonstrate correct piping practices and sizing; demonstrate venting practices and sizing. Identify, install, and maintain oil heat components and electrical heating equipment. Identify, install and service hydronic heating boilers. Install, test and maintain air humidifying and filtration systems and air distribution systems. Understand Ground-source heat pump operation and installation.