An HVAC license proves that you have obtained proper training to handle the complex nature of work this field entails. This license showcases your level of understanding of appliances and your experience in a specific area e.g., handling low or high air pressure appliances.

What Does an HVAC Licensed Technician Do?

There are different categories of jobs in the HVAC industry. For instance, HVAC technicians work at residential or construction sites and fix heat pumps or install as well as repair air conditioners etc. To do the HVAC work by the book, you must have a certain level of skill and knowledge of the governing rules. This skill set and know-how can be gained by obtaining a formal HVAC certification combined with hands on field experience.

How to Become an HVAC Licensed Technician in Pennsylvania?

Several institutions in Pennsylvania offer different certifications in HVAC. For example, HVAC Technician Training Programs are offered at the Pennsylvania College of Technology and the Harrisburg Area Community College. These colleges are offering HVAC certifications that integrate coursework as well as apprenticeships to help students get hands on experience while they study. The curriculum of an HVAC certification typically includes courses like, the State, Federal & Local Laws, Basic Electricity for HVAC and HVAC Practices & Systems Design etc.

Requirements to Become an HVAC Licensed Technician in Pennsylvania

After completing a formal HVAC Technician Training Certification, graduates acquire an HVAC license. The state of Pennsylvania has not issued any mandate regarding obtaining an HVAC license. However, majority of the HVAC technicians take the exam and get licensed to improve their job prospects.

Those who wish to apply for an HVAC license should follow this procedure:

  1. Obtain an HVAC certification.
  2. Apply for and take the International Code Council (ICC) exam.
  3. Submit $150 as the application fee for the exam.
  4. Obtain at least 70% marks to pass the exam.
  5. Get licensed as an HVAC technician.

Types of HVAC License in Pennsylvania

There are 3 particular types of HVAC licenses that HVAC technicians can obtain in Pennsylvania. They may choose the type of license they need based on their area of interest.

Home Improvement Contractor License


Studying for this license exam helps Home Improvement Contractors gain the skills needed to determine if a project meets the Pennsylvania Code Requirements or not. Having this license makes it easier for them to manage HVAC work sites and get local permits where needed. The requirements to apply for this license are mentioned below. The applicants must:

  • Be at least 18 years old.
  • Have at least 2 years of work experience in home improvements.
  • Have completed an HVAC Training Program or a 2-year/4-year college degree.
  • Have a valid Pennsylvania Identification Card or a driver’s license.

Grade B Refrigeration Engineers License

The HVAC technicians who want to specialize in installing, maintaining and repairing ice machines, refrigerated storage units and HVAC units etc. may obtain this license. The applicants who want to apply for a Grade B Refrigeration Engineer license must:

  • Be at least 18 years old.
  • Have obtained a high school diploma or GED.
  • Have at least 2,000 hours of field experience in refrigeration.
  • Have completed a minimum of 100 classroom hours of course training.

HVAC Contractors License

The HVAC Contractors who possess a license are certified to install, maintain and repair heating systems, air conditioning units as well as ventilation units for residential and commercial properties. People who wish to obtain the HVAC Contractor license must:

  • Be at least 18 years old.
  • Have obtained at least a high school diploma or GED.
  • Have at least 4 years of HVAC field experience.
  • Possess the general liability insurance.

Career Outlook of an HVAC Technician

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has predicted a rise of 13% employment growth for the Heating, Air Conditioning & Refrigeration Mechanics and Installers in the decade from 2018 to 2028. This employment growth rate is reported to be much faster than the average for other occupations.

How Much Does an HVAC Technician Make in Pennsylvania?

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics stated the annual mean income of Heating, Air Conditioning & Refrigeration Mechanics and Installers as follows:

2016 2017 2018
Annual Mean Salary (PA) $49,650 $51,360 $51,870
Annual Mean Salary (US) $48,320 $49,530 $50,160

Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics

The above income chart depicts a gradual, yet minor increase in the salary of Heating, Air Conditioning & Refrigeration Mechanics and Installers in the three years from 2016 to 2018. However, it was still higher than the national annual mean income for the same occupation group.