Academic Catalog


Foothill College Course Outline of Record

Foothill College Course Outline of Record
Heading Value
Units: 4.5
Hours: 30 lecture, 72 laboratory per quarter (102 total per quarter)
Prerequisite: Per California Code of Regulations, this course is limited to students admitted to the Refrigeration & Air Conditioning Mechanical Service Apprenticeship Program.
Degree & Credit Status: Degree-Applicable Credit Course
Foothill GE: Non-GE
Transferable: None
Grade Type: Letter Grade (Request for Pass/No Pass)
Repeatability: Not Repeatable

Student Learning Outcomes

  • A student will be able to apply fluid balance laws.
  • A student will be able to demonstrate pumps and pump laws.


Fourth-year course of the Refrigeration & Air Conditioning Apprenticeship program. This course provides students with a working knowledge of Start, Test and Balance for Piping Systems, Pumps, Chillers, Boilers, and Condensers. Students will learn how to audit mechanical equipment to ensure proper energy efficiency techniques are applied.

Course Objectives

The student will be able to:
A. Explain fluid flow
B. Recognize, classify and explain piping systems and sizing
C. Recognize pumps and explain pumps laws
D. Explain applications and components
E. Benchmark building mechanical equipment

Course Content

A. Fluid Flow
1. Fluid properties
2. Fluid dynamics
B. Piping Systems
1. 1 Pipe systems, direct return
2. 2 Pipe systems, reverse return
3. 3 Pipe systems, primary secondary
4. 4 Pipe systems, series loop
5. Pipe sizing ITT size chart
C. Pumps and Pump Laws
1. Pumping systems
2. Control valves
D. Applications & Components
1. Chillers/Boilers
2. Condensers open, closed water and air
3. Heat pumps
4. Towers
5. Other components
E. Mechanical Equipment
1. Building mechanical equipment from drawings
2. Benchmarking mechanical equipment

Lab Content

Students will work individually and in teams in the lab, which includes:
A. Calibration and Balancing of 1-Piping to a 4-Piping System
B. Controlled Study: Heat Transfer Equipment & Steam Service
C. Refrigeration & Cooling Related to Hydronics
D. Measuring efficiency of mechanical equipment

Special Facilities and/or Equipment

A. Laboratory with calibration and balancing tools
B. Personal protective equipment

Method(s) of Evaluation

A. Written examination
B. Hands-on demonstration
C. Chapter Quizzes
D. Group and Classroom participation
E. Punctuality

Method(s) of Instruction

A. Lecture
B. Discussion
C. Laboratory
D. Demonstration

Representative Text(s) and Other Materials

United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices. Start Test and Balance. Washington, D.C.: International Pipe Trades Joint Training Committee, Inc., 2014.

United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices. Energy Auditing Practices. Washington, D.C.: International Pipe Trades Joint Training Committee, Inc., 2012.

Texts older than 5 years that may be utilized in this course are industry-standard texts.


Types and/or Examples of Required Reading, Writing, and Outside of Class Assignments

A. Readings from the course textbooks

1. Steam systems and how they relate to Hydronics

2. The application of Condensate and Return

3. Boiler and chiller safety callouts

B. Writing assignment involves class assignments to prepare diagrams of 1-piping, 2-piping, 3-piping and 4-piping systems



Air Conditioning, Refrigeration, Heating