How to Become a Certified Air Filter Specialist
How to Become a Certified Air Filter Specialist

In response to the need for quality assurance, increased education and recognition of professional achievement within the industry, NAFA developed the NAFA Certified Air Filter Specialist (CAFS) program — the first education and certification program designed specifically for air filtration professionals.

The CAFS program distinguishes those professionals who have demonstrated a thorough, up-to-date understanding of air filtration technology and high level of professionalism. In order to become certified, air filtration professionals must pass an extensive examination on the principles, methods and applications of air filtration. Candidates for certification are also subject to compliance with the NAFA Code of Ethics. Certification is renewable on an annual basis pending successful completion of continued education requirements in order to demonstrate current and continued expertise.

When purchasing products or services from a Certified Air Filter Specialist, customers are assured that their particular requirements and needs will be addressed by a knowledgeable professional.

The CAFS Exam is strictly pass/fail based on the total number of correct answers. No other details will be released; correct or incorrect answers will not be shared. Samples test questions are not available.

FAQ About The CAFS Exam

What do I need to study in order to pass the Certified Air Filter Specialist exam?

The 100 question (70 multiple choice, 30 true/false) CAFS Exam is based on the NAFA Guide to Air Filtration. In fact, every question comes straight out of the book! If you study the manual thoroughly you should have no problem passing the exam. We also recommend that you have at least one year of field experience in the air filter industry. NAFA does offer a series of recordings to help you study, however, if you have not read and understood the NAFA Guide to Air Filtration, you will probably not pass the exam.

What is the Cost to take the exam?

For members, the cost to take the exam is $200; to renew certification each year, the cost is $40.00. For nonmembers of NAFA, the cost to take the exam is $500; to renew certification each year, the cost is $300.

What are the renewal requirements?

To maintain CAFS Certification, you must complete eight (8) continuing education credits annually from the categories listed below. No more than four (4) total credits will be accepted from any one category. These activities must have been completed between October 1 and September 30. Nonmembers of NAFA must have attended an event sponsored by NAFA or ASHRAE, EPA, BOMA, AMIAQC, AFE, NAPE, AFS, AABC, RSES, ACCA, CETA, NSPE, IAQA, AIA, NEBB, ASHE or SMACNA and submit a certificate of attendance from such event

4 Credits:

  • Attended NAFA Technical Seminar and / or NAFA Annual Convention
  • Attended seminar on HVAC, IAQ, or filtration given by a related association or organization (such as ASHRAE, EPA, BOMA, AMIAQC, AFE, NAPE, AFS, AABC, RSES, ACCA, CETA, NSPE, IAQA, AIA, NEBB, ASHE or SMACNA
  • Served on a NAFA Committee and attended at least two committee meetings within the year
  • Attended ASHRAE/AHR National Winter Meeting
  • Attended ASHRAE/AHR National Summer Meeting
  • Attended training seminar related to HVAC, IAQ, or filtration given by a supplier/manufacturer of HVAC, IAQ, or filtration related products

2 Credits:

  • Attended and passed a college level course on HVAC, IAQ, or filtration
  • Wrote a technical article for publication in Air Media or other approved publication related to HVAC air filtration
  • Gave a technical presentation at the NAFA Technical Seminar, Annual Convention, other event related to HVAC or air filtration industry or otherwise presented technical filtration information for educational purposes
  • Presented an in-house seminar or attended an in-house seminar presented by a CAFS

When / Where can I take the exam next?

The next CAFS Exam will be administered during the next Annual Convention or AHR Expo and Technical Seminar.

What about the tutorial?

In order to help you prepare for the exam, NAFA has developed a series of webinar recordings that covers the 16 chapters in the NAFA Guide to Air Filtration. We strongly encourage you to view them prior to taking the exam (you must first register for the exam to receive links to the recordings). This series of webinars replaces the “Track One” previously offered at Technical Seminars.

Are there any other options to take the CAFS exam?

If you choose, you can travel to the NAFA offices in Madison, WI or Virginia Beach, VA to take the exam. You must first contact NAFA Staff and prearrange a meeting time, there may be an added fee for testing facilities. If you have a larger group (5 or more) taking the exam, you may also be able to have someone from the NAFA offices travel to your location to administer the exam. You must first contact NAFA Staff to prearrange this option. You must agree to pay travel and lodging expenses, plus an additional $500 proctor fee.