Inside the 908th: HVAC/R Technicians
MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Alabama —
Those who live in a hot and humid climate know how important it is to try to stay cool. Here in Alabama, summer temperatures can exceed 90 degrees Fahrenheit before 10 a.m. One of the first things someone might express relief upon entering a building is that the air conditioning is on. This is where Airmen from the 908th Civil Engineer Squadron, who specialize in heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration, can really shine.
HVAC/R Technicians (Air Force Specialty Code 3E1X1) are civil engineers who apply the knowledge and principles of HVAC/R systems, controls, and components. This includes, but is not limited to: combustion systems, air and water balancing, electrical equipment, industrial air compressors, interpretation of drawings and schematics, industrial water treatment, environmental regulations for fuels, refrigerants and hazardous materials, military and commercial publications and environmental protection. regulations.
“We’re like a jack-of-all-trades,” said the master sergeant. Tyler Phillips, a 908 CES HVAC/R technician. “I think we’re multifunctional because we have to deal with traditional HVAC things like heating and cooling, but also because we do plumbing work because of the water supply and return lines, as well as electrical skills as the units are managed and controlled by electricity.
HVAC/R systems do more than provide cooler air, they also filter contaminants from the air.
According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, “In addition to ‘airborne dust’, airborne particles can include pollen, mold (fungal) spores, animal dander, insect proteins, pesticides, lead and infectious bacteria and viruses”.
So not only do HVAC/R technicians ensure more comfortable air, but they also provide an overall cleaner working environment.
“The most rewarding part of this job is when we’re able to get people fresh air,” Phillips said. “Not having air conditioning can be miserable, especially in our Alabama heat or in a deployed environment. As for directly supporting our mission here…I feel like we can be part of a successful global mission when we are able to restore cooling to critical communication systems and flight line landing systems.
To access this specialty, a secondary school diploma with courses in mathematics, general sciences, physics, workshop mechanics, electricity and computer science is desirable. As well as normal color vision and possession of a valid driver’s license to operate government motor vehicles.
If you are interested in a part-time career with full-time benefits as a Reserve Citizen Airman with the 908th Airlift Wing, please contact our recruiting staff at 334-953-6737.