[gravata]What challenges do professionals face to stay up to date?[/gravata] Visiting refrigeration trade shows, attending lectures and participating in discussion forums are some resources that keep the contractor up to date with the news. But, besides knowing the new tools available in the market, it’s still necessary to have dominion over Internet tools which, sometimes, represent an obstacle for the contractor who has worked more time in the profession. Thirteen years working as a self-employed contractor, Osmar Lima da Silva, 56, of Belo Horizonte (MG), recognizes the need to stay informed about new tools but the last course he did was last year. “The market is very demanding, the tendency is that those who stay up to date do well”, he says. “I have colleagues who are already out of the market because they couldn’t keep up,” informs Osmar who guarantees he has managed to adapt to the Internet, although he prefers to correspond by letter. He admits that in the last two years, many new things have emerged, but there are things that all contractors need to know, for example, like taking care with the use of the refrigerant fluid R134a. “Oil can’t be exposed for more than 15 minutes, once the equipment is opened, you have to use it”, he says with experience. Experience versus willingness A post-graduation course in Refrigeration and Climate Control Applied to Industrial Food is offered by SENAI, in Toledo, Paraná. Great willingness is necessary to follow the market, it’s not enough to have years of experience; constant updating is the key to be competitive and stay ahead of the competition. Therefore, the contractor Fábio Antônio Egea Tiem, 30, went looking for another course to do this year; A post-graduation course in Refrigeration and Climate Control Applied to Industrial Food – offered by SENAI in Toledo (PR). “Sometimes the contractor has a lot of practical knowledge, but the theoretical development is also important”, he says. According to the contractor Fábio Tiem, the exchange of experiences with other professionals in the courses is as valuable as the knowledge gained from the professors themselves. During six years working in the area, in addition to the refrigeration technical course, he has also taken an electro-technical course to obtain more knowledge and provide better customer service. “Sometimes you go just to do maintenance on a refrigerated counter, but end up fixing an electrical panel as well. You have to offer something more than the customer needs”. Through the refrigeration courses you’re more likely to stay on top of news. “You get to know the benefits of having an air bleed valve and about the dehydration improvement of the ammonia system”, he emphasizes. Fabio tells that he still sees many professionals using alcohol mixed with water in the dehydration process. “The use of this popular practice causes oxidation, corrosion and deterioration of the system. This is misinformation and lack of being updated”, he concludes. More information about the post-graduation course click here.