In the 1990s, many industry leaders in the heating and air conditioning field noticed a problem. Equipment manufacturers were producing more advanced machines, but clients were frequently dissatisfied with them. Companies were spending more resources on customer service, recurring callbacks and handling costly returns. Manufacturers and contractors realized the technicians working on these systems often didn’t have the necessary education or training to service them properly. To address this problem, the Air-Conditioning, Heating & Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) and the Gas Appliance Manufacturers Association (GAMA) formed North American Technician Excellence (NATE), a nonprofit certification program for technicians working in heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration (HVACR).