The RV Technical Institute launched last year with a brand-new curriculum featuring hands-on training and instruction from top RV industry experts. This program, designed to be the only industry-wide credential, provides RV service technicians with the experience and expertise needed by manufacturers, dealerships and repair shops nationwide. The goal? Improve skills such as testing RV systems, diagnosing, repairing, replacing RV component parts, and increase proficiency and efficiency for our RV customers.

With the onset of the new program there have been plenty of questions from existing technicians and dealers. Below you’ll find a list of the most frequently asked questions and the answers you’re looking for.

IS THIS NEW CURRICULUM AND CERTIFICATION CAREER PATH SUPPORTED BY THE INDUSTRY?
The RV Industry Association and the RV Dealers Association contributed a combined $10 million dollars to create the curriculum, credentialing and career path for RV service technicians, along with an institute to deliver the new and improved curriculum. It is the only industry-wide supported path to certification.

WHAT DOES THE NEW TECHNICIAN CAREER PATH LOOK LIKE AND HOW DO I ACHIEVE EACH LEVEL?
The new technician career path is divided into four levels of proficiency. A technician will be awarded a Level 1, 2, 3 or Level 4 master technician credential based on successfully demonstrating the required knowledge and skills at each level. Each level builds on the foundation of the previous level and allows the technician to become a generalist or a specialist. The program will cover theory, application and troubleshooting.

  • LEVEL 1: A pre-delivery inspector (PDI) technician with a proven skill set to prepare an RV for customer delivery by verifying the operation of all components. To achieve this level, you must successfully pass Level 1 written and skill-based (practical) exams.
  • LEVEL 2: A technician that has theoretical knowledge of all the systems and components within an RV and a proven skill set to be able to perform basic diagnostics, troubleshooting, and repairs on those systems and components. To achieve this level, you must successfully pass Level 1 and 2 written and skill-based (practical) exams.
  • LEVEL 3: A technician that has completed the supplier trainings on specific types of components and increased their skill set to be able to perform advanced diagnostics, troubleshooting, and repairs on those systems and components. To achieve this level, you must successfully pass Level 1 and 2 written and skill-based (practical) exams as well as attend and pass 24-hours of approved hands-on vendor trainings within five years covering the minimum topics listed for each specialty.
  • LEVEL 4: The Master Technician has completed all five designated specialties through vendor trainings and is proficient in troubleshooting and repair of all the major systems and components within an RV.

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR MY CURRENT CERTIFICATION?
The RVDA/RV Industry Association Technician Certification Program has transitioned to the RV Technical Institute and current registered, certified or master certified technicians will have the following designations under the new RV Technical Institute’s program:

  • Registered technicians will be re-designated as a LEVEL 1 Certified Technician
  • Certified Technicians will be re-designated as a LEVEL 2 Certified Technician
  • Certified Technicians Level 2 with proof of required supplier trainings completed within the past five years will be granted the corresponding RV Technical Institute LEVEL 3 specialty and re-designated as a LEVEL 3 Certified Technician and/or a LEVEL 4 Master Certified Technician, as appropriate.
  • Master Certified technicians will be re-designated as a LEVEL 4 Master Certified Technician

Current registered, certified or master certified technicians can expect to receive their new RV Technical Institute credentials at no charge during the 2020 transitional year. All expiration dates remain the same for your current certification.

HOW LONG DOES EACH CERTIFICATION LAST AND WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO RE-CERTIFY?

  • LEVEL 1: Good for life with no re-certification or continuing education requirements. A yearly information and employment verification check-in are needed to stay active.
  • LEVEL 2: Good for five years. Over this period, the technician must acquire 24 hours of continuing education credits (CEUs) of approved hands-on or online training. No training older than five years will be counted and a yearly information and employment verification check-in are needed to stay active.
  • LEVEL 3: Good for five years. Over this period, the technician must acquire 24 hours of continuing education credits (CEUs) of approved hands-on or online training. Eight of the 24 hours of CEUs must be directly related to the specialty held. No training older than five years will be counted and no trainings can repeat. A yearly information and employment verification check-in are needed to stay active.
  • LEVEL 4: Good for five years. Over this period, the technician must acquire 24 hours of continuing education credits (CEUs) of approved hands-on or online training. These training can include participation in RV Technical Institute or other industry-approved activities such as curriculum development, train-the-trainer programs and leadership training No training older than five years will be counted and a yearly information and employment verification check-in are needed to stay active.

MY CERTIFICATION HAS EXPIRED, AM I GRANDFATHERED INTO THE NEW PROGRAM?
Only current, valid certifications will be transferred into the new program. The RV Technical Institute’s re-certification procedures are in development and will be announced when they are available.

WHERE CAN I GET TRAINED AND FIND A SCHEDULE OF CLASSES?
All RV Technical Institute classes are held at either at its headquarters facility in Elkhart, Ind., or provided through one of our Authorized Licensed Partners. Level one classes will be held on March 9, April 6, May 18 and June 1. Sign up here!

HOW LONG IS EACH CLASS AND WHAT ARE THE COSTS?

  • Level 1 is one week, plus a two-hour practical test time to be assigned the following week. The class is FREE for 2020 if you currently work in the RV industry, $1,000 if you are not.
  • Level 2 is seven courses, and each course is about a week- long with practical testing included. The class is $500/week or $2,500 for all seven weeks if you currently work in the RV industry, $1,000/week or $5,000 for all seven weeks if you are not in the RV industry.

HOW DO I BECOME AN AUTHORIZED LICENSED PARTNER?
The RV Technical Institute’s Authorized Licensed Partner program is a network of regional training partners approved to deliver RV Technical Institute’s standardized training on a local or regional basis. Licensed Partners have access to the Institute’s full curriculum, training materials, and soon to be launched learning management system (LMS) and testing, as well as training from the Institute’s staff on how to track student progress and deliver the curriculum. To become an RV Technical Institute Authorized Licensed Partner, you must:

  • Use the LMS to track and register students, receive curriculum updates and deliver the curriculum to students
  • Ensure course instructors are Level 2 Certified RV Technicians who have completed the week-long RV Technical Institute’s Train the Trainer Course
  • Attend the Annual RV Technical Institute’s Trainer Conference in Elkhart, Ind., ($300 fee/instructor)
  • Ensure proctoring of exams are not done by dealer employees
  • Meet minimum national average student completion and pass rates
  • Submit to program audits

Dealers interested in becoming an Authorized Licensed Partner should contact us at 1-800-664-0154 or [email protected].

WHEN IS THE TRAIN THE TRAINER CLASS AND HOW DO I SIGN UP?
Train the Trainer Classes are available to Authorized Licensed Partners and will be held in Elkhart on April 13 and June 29. Contact us at 1-800-664-0154 or [email protected] to sign up.

Have additional questions not answered here? Please feel free to email the RV Technical Institute at [email protected].