What is an HVAC Technician?
An HVAC technician is a heating, ventilation and air conditioning technician. They are skilled workers that are trained to repair, maintain, and install these systems in homes, offices and schools. Some HVAC technicians are only required to complete a fundamentals course but others may require further education. This is especially true if you are planning to work on solar panels, green technology, or radiant heating systems.
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HVAC Service Technician
As an HVAC service technician, you will be required to perform both skilled and unskilled tasks. You could be recruited to fix and maintain air filters, blower fans, bearings and more. In addition to this, you may be required to complete the paperwork that comes with each job, including duration, hours spent, etc.
How to Get an HVAC License?
The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) requires all HVAC technicians to be licensed. To get an HVAC license, you could go down a few routes. You could enroll in a training program and get a certificate in your area of specialization. This will take anywhere from 6 months to two years. There are many vocational and technical schools as well as community colleges that offer online HVAC training for aspiring technicians.
You could also opt for an apprenticeship. Apprenticeship programs offer both classroom-style learning and actual work experience. These programs tend to last around 3 to 5 years. Alternatively, you could get a high school diploma and start applying for jobs.
Online HVAC Training
If you are planning to be a working HVAC technician alongside your training, then online courses are the best option for you. Several community colleges and vocational training schools offer online courses in HVAC fundamentals and more. During your training, you may have to learn about installations, repairs, laws regarding environmental protection and more. For practical sessions, you might have to visit a training facility.
After meeting the requirements necessary to become an HVAC technician, you can work at schools, offices, and homes, etc. or you could work in alternative industries. Having been trained as an HVAC technician allows you to work in other occupations. These HVAC technician jobs include:
- General Maintenance and Repair Workers
- Plumbers, Pipe Fitters and Steam Fitters
- Sheet Metal Workers
- Solar Photovoltaic Installers
- Stationary Engineers and Boiler Operators
- Wind Turbine Technicians
Average HVAC Salary
According to the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median wage for heating, air conditioning, and refrigeration mechanics and installers was $47,610 per year and $22.89 per hour. The lowest 10 percent of HVAC technicians made less than $29,460 and the highest 10 percent of workers made more than $76,230 as of May 2018. The number of jobs available in this occupation in 2016 was 332,900 and is expected to increase by 15 percent resulting in 48,800 new jobs between 2016 and 2026.