Testing, Adjusting and Balancing

NEBB’s Testing, Adjusting and Balancing Program for air and hydronic systems provides for certification of firms and qualification of individuals that meet criteria established by NEBB.

Purpose of Certification Program

The purpose of NEBB certification is to offer tangible proof of competent firms and certified professionals qualified in the proper methods and procedures for the various categories of NEBB certification.


The following objectives were created for this purpose:Les objectifs suivants furent crées dans ce but:

  • To establish industry standards, procedures and specifications for environmental systems TAB
  • To set minimum educational standards and other requirements for the qualification of certified professionaly personnel employed by firms who perform this work
  • To establish educational programs for training certified professionaly personnel in the proper methods and procedures for environmental systems TAB
  • To certify as qualified for the performance and supervision of environmental systems TAB, those firms who meet the requirements for certification as established by NEBB, who agree to comply with the objectives of NEBB, and who employ certified professionaly personnel who have met the NEBB requirements of qualification
  • To serve as a clearinghouse for educational and technical materials pertinent to TAB work

TAB Certification Requirements

In order to become NEBB-certified in TAB, a firm must:

  • Have operated for a minimum period of 12 months continuously with full time employees as an installing piping contractor; installing sheet metal contractor; installing mechanical contractor; or contractor engaged in TAB work
  • Enjoy a reputation for integrity and responsible performance. Six letters of endorsement, five from consulting engineers, architects or building owners and the sixth may be from a contracting firm. All should reflect work that the applicant firm has completed
  • Be affiliated and in good standing with a local NEBB Chapter
  • Possess the various TAB instruments which are required; the local NEBB Chapter must visually confirm compliance
  • Confirm in writing that it will conform to the NEBB guidelines for the calibration and maintenance of the TAB instruments required
  • Possess the current NEBB Procedural Standards for Testing, Adjusting and Balancing of Environmental Systems
  • Designate in writing one or more certified professionals who will represent the firm and be responsible for the supervision of TAB work. The certified professional must meet the following minimum qualifications:
    • TAB Qualification for TAB Certified Professionals

    • Be employed by a certified firm or candidate firm on a full time basis
    • Demonstrate knowledge of Testing Adjusting and Balancing of air and hydronic systems, by passing appropriate written and practical NEBB examinations
    • Hold a management position in the firm, be able to represent the firm on TAB matters, and have a reputation of integrity with consultants and awarding authorities
    • Meet all of the conditions in any one of the following categories (note that all requirements cannot be conducted concurrently):
    • Category A Category B Category C Category D
      Hold a Bachelor of Science Degree in Engineering Hold an Associates Degree in Engineering Technology Have at least four years of experience in selected discipline Have a minimum of four years of HVAC related experience (which could include accredited apprenticeship)
      Have at least two years of certified professionaly experience in selected discipline (TAB, S&V, or BSC) Have at least four years of certified professionaly experience in selected discipline (TAB, S&V or BSC) Have at least four years of certified professionaly experience in selected discipline (TAB, S&V or BSC) Have at least six years of experience in selected discipline with at least four of those years in a certified professionaly position.

TAB Recertification Requirements

Every two years, the local NEBB Chapter must verify continued compliance with NEBB certification requirements for each certified firm, as follows:

  • The firm must own the instruments required for TAB certification which had been accepted or their replacements
  • The firm must submit records to verify their conformance with NEBB guidelines for calibration and maintenance of required TAB instruments
  • The firm must confirm in writing that they employ the designated certified professional(s) full time who previously met the NEBB requirements for TAB qualification
  • The firm must verify in writing that the designated certified professional(s) has attended at least one six (6) hour approved TAB seminar or refresher course given annually or a total of 12 hours for 2 years by NEBB Chapters or National NEBB, or seminars given by ASHRAE, or by other NEBB approved organizations or institutions

TAB Written and Practical Examinations

Persons must meet the criteria for TAB Certified Professional to be eligible to take the NEBB examinations. Marginal cases may be referred to NEBB by the local Chapter Technical Committee, including supporting documentation, for determination of eligibility.

  • Written examinations for Air and Hydronics are normally conducted twice annually on examination dates set by the NEBB Board of Directors. Candidates of all Chapters are tested on the same date
  • The Air/Hydronics written examinations are in three parts — Fundamentals & Procedural Standards (2½ Hours); Air (2½ Hours); Hydronics (2½ Hours) To be eligible for qualification a TAB Certified Professional must pass all three sections
  • To be eligible for Qualification an applicant must pass all sections of the written exam, as well as a practical examination. Practical examinations are prepared and administered by the local Chapter Technical Committee, based on guidance provided by NEBB. All candidates applying for NEBB TAB Certified Professional qualification have three years from their initial test date to pass all sections of the written and practical exam. When this time period expires, the candidate must wait a period of at least two additional years before re-applying for qualification


A firm’s certification shall automatically be suspended when the firm no longer meets all of the NEBB certification requirements. The certification of a firm suspended may be reinstated by NEBB at such time as it again meets the requirements for certification. The period of suspension may be no longer than one year at which time the firm will lose its certification automatically.

A certified firm must notify the local NEBB Chapter in writing within ten days of the temporary or permanent loss of a designated qualified certified professional.

Loss of Certification

Certification may be terminated for failure of the firm to abide by the objectives and performance standards of NEBB. Termination of certification by NEBB requires vote of the Board of Directors of NEBB provided that by similar vote the Board shall first find that certification is prejudicial to the best interests of the Bureau and provided further that the certified firm in question shall have had opportunity upon written notice of at least fifteen (15) days to show cause why the certification should not be terminated.

Instruments for TAB Certification

Ownership Requirements

It is the responsibility of the NEBB-certified TAB Firm to provide appropriate instrumentation that meets the minimum requirements as called for in the 7th Edition NEBB Procedural Standards for Testing Adjusting Balancing of Environmental Systems TABLE 4-1 for use on a project. Instrumentation used on a NEBB project shall be in proper operating condition and shall be applied in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendations. TABLE 4-1 lists the minimum instrumentation that a NEBB-certified TAB Firm shall own and maintain.

A firm certified in one discipline is only required to own instruments appropriate for their category of certification as noted above. Specifically, A = instrumentation required for Air Certification. H = equals instrumentation required for Hydronic certification.

Click here for the Table 4.1 – Table of Required Instrumentation (requires Adobe Acrobat Reader)

Range and Accuracy

A NEBB-certified TAB Firm shall possess instruments of the firm’s choice for each function and range listed in Table 4-1. Each instrument shall have been specifically designed to meet the criteria (Minimum Accuracy, Range, and Resolution) of the function.

Instrumentation with multiple capabilities shall be accepted for more than one function when submitting documentation for a firm’s certification, providing that each separate function meets NEBB requirements.

Information and data regarding accuracy of all submitted instrumentation for the stated functions shall be available from the manufacturer.

The accuracy and range as reported by the instrument manufacturer shall be verified by a testing laboratory traceable to the National Institute of Standards and Technology or equivalent institute in countries other than the United States. Calibration requirements for each function are specified and shall be met. Some instruments such as U-tube manometers and inclined manometers may not require calibration. However, if a “mechanical/electrical” device is substituted or employed in place of these types of instruments, the indicated calibration requirements noted shall apply.

Firms with multiple sets of instrumentation shall comply with either of the following conditions as a minimum requirement for NEBB certification:

  1. Calibrate all instrumentation used by the firm on TAB projects in accordance with Table 4-1, or;
  2. Maintain a complete set of calibrated instrumentation used for comparison with regularly used instrumentation. Periodic checking of regularly used instrumentation against the calibrated set shall be performed.
  3. Acceptance criteria for the results of the comparisons are the responsibility of the NEBB Qualified TAB Certified Professional.

Certified Professionals must understand the importance of using accurate instrumentation in the field, and shall be prepared to have witnesses verify their work with the Firm’s calibrated set of instrumentation. Results of the data verification shall validate the accuracy of the instrumentation used to perform the work.

Appropriate Application of Instruments

Instruments shall be used in accordance with manufacturer’s recommendations. The most suitable instrument, or combination of instruments, should be employed for a particular measurement or reading. For example, a traverse may be accomplished with a Pitot tube and manometer (digital, analog, or incline); it is not acceptable to use a Pitot tube with another device that does not provide the same overall accuracy.

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