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GAOI Accreditation and Training

Promoting excellence in the geothermal industry is JOB ONE for the Geothermal Alliance of Illinois. This goal is the driving force behind two GAOI initiatives…. GAOI accreditation and on-line training.

The GAOI’s accreditation program is available to member-companies and their employees. The test is given annually at the Illinois Geothermal Conference (and may be provided through special requests at other times by contacting GAOI Executive Director John Freitag).

There are currently three tests being provided to GAOI member-companies and their employees.

For dealer-contractors and mechanical contractors…

For geothermal contractors, there are the Installer and Service Technician examinations. The Installer test is the shorter exam of the two, and all the questions on this test are also included on the Service Technician exam, which goes into greater detail about troubleshooting issues. Contractors are also encouraged to take the Loop Installer exam, even if they don’t install geothermal loop fields. It’s important for contractors to understand loop basics.

The exams aren’t easy – but installers and service techs with experience and solid manufacturer training shouldn’t have any difficulty passing the tests. The questions cover areas that are very important for geothermal professionals – refrigeration basics, water flow, sizing, etc.

In order to pass the tests, participants need to score 80 percent or more on each exam. Those participants who pass the Service Technician exam will also receive their Installer certificate as well. Participating test-takers can take either test, or both.

GAOI member-contractors can be recognized with these GAOI company accreditations when 75 percent of their staff members who install and/or service geothermal equipment have passed the tests. These companies will be recognized on the GAOI web site as having the “GAOI accreditation” and these member-companies can also use this accreditation for their own marketing/promotion efforts.

For loop installation/drilling contractors…

For loop installers there is the Loop Installation examination. The Loop Installation test can be taken by loop installation personnel, as well as any geothermal contractors interested in holding this designation, and/or those contractors that install loops (horizontal or vertical).

GAOI member-contractors can be recognized with this GAOI company accreditation when at least one representative of the firm has passed the exam. Companies that qualify will be recognized on the GAOI web site as having the “GAOI accreditation” and these member-companies can also use this accreditation for their own marketing/promotion efforts.

GAOI on line training…

The GAOI has a series of on line training programs that can be accessed by GAOI members. There are Service Technician, Installation Technician, Loop Installation and System Designer modules.

For additional information on these accreditation and on-line training programs, please contact John Freitag, GAOI Executive Director, at 217-241-7973, or jfreitag@aiec.coop.