If you’re thinking about a new, high-paying career, look no further than heating, ventilation and air conditioning. HVAC is one of the quickest-growing careers you can find, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, which estimates careers in this field will expand by 13 percent by 2028.
There are several reasons why these jobs are growing so fast. One is homeowners taking advantage of government incentives to purchase more energy-efficient comfort systems. Then there’s the ban on R-22 Freon® refrigerants, which influences old equipment. Finally, there’s the red-hot home market and a house shortage that’s driven an increase in new construction houses.
One of the top needed jobs is working as an HVAC technician. Discover about what they do, how to become one and about how much you can expect to receive.
What Is an HVAC Technician?
A HVAC technician is someone who services, installs and maintains heating and cooling systems. Most serve both homeowners and business owners. And, most important, you’ll be skilled with:
Some are HVAC-R technicians, which means they also can take care of refrigeration.
Is HVAC a Hard Career?
While HVAC can be physically demanding, it can also be highly satisfying. As a technician you should be able to:
- Work in difficult settings, such as tight or dirty spaces.
- Work in hot or cold areas as equipment is often outdoors.
- Work evenings, weekends and overtime during peak days.
One of the biggest misconceptions about HVAC is that it’s a blue-collar position. It requires a certain skill set, extensive education and ongoing qualifications.
It’s an excellent career choice if you want to:
- Not be saddled with a lot of student debt.
- Avoid sitting at a desk or in an office.
- Have job security being sure your position can’t be outsourced.
- Be your own boss and own your own prosperous business.
How to Become an HVAC Technician
To become an HVAC technician, you’ll need a high school diploma or GED, plus comprehensive instruction. Other more specialized (and higher paying) HVAC careers typically need extra education or qualifications.
You can get your certification by taking classes at a community college or trade school. How long it takes to become an HVAC technician is linked to the program, which is often six months to two years. Your employer might also want NATE certification. Known as North American Technician Excellence, this industry-leading certification increases your technical know-how to help you better serve customers.
Career Explorer noted that technicians familiar with tablets, electronics and troubleshooting will be in big demand as equipment becomes more technologically advanced.
Another perk of working in HVAC is little to no student debt.
According to Midwest Technical Institute, attending a technical or trade school typically runs around $15,000. A community college usually runs around $5,000 annually. In contrast, the average student debt for a bachelor’s degree is $25,921.
A Day in the Life of an HVAC Technician
Your work schedule could vary depending on your employer. If you do repairs, you might work early, late or be on call. If you work in construction/home building or management, you might have more of a regular schedule during typical business hours.
As a technician, you’ll visit different locations for repair, maintenance or installation work. Some jobs might take longer than others, so the number of calls you can take care of may vary.
As we went over previously, you should be accustomed to working outdoors in extreme weather, as well as in dirty or cramped spaces. If you work in a customer-facing role, solid customer service skills are always positive.
Average Salary for HVAC Technicians and Other HVAC Careers
Because HVAC is a fast-growing career, your salary will show it. The national average salary for an HVAC technician is $49,242, according to ZipRecruiter. Top earners make between $56,600 and $68,000. However, salaries might be different based on your locationand its cost of living.
Other than having your own business, there are a wide range of other career opportunities. These include:
HVAC manager, $72,515 average salary
HVAC service manager, $71,176 average salary
Where HVAC Technicians Are in High Demand
HVAC technicians are needed across the country, but even more so in Florida, California, Texas, New York and Illinois. According to hvacclasses.org, these states employ the highest number of HVAC workers and are dealing with explosive construction growth. Here’s why:
- Florida: Hurricanes, education and healthcare facilities.
- California: Wildfires, transportation, energy and utility upgrades.
- Texas: Hurricanes, energy, utility and other infrastructure projects.
- New York: Residential and infrastructure projects.
- Illinois: Companies relocating to the Chicago area.
Where HVAC Technicians Will Be in High Demand in the Future
Projections Central, who develops long-term occupational projections, forecasts these states to have the greatest demand for technicians by 2028:
- Utah, 31.1%
- Colorado, 29.7%
- Nevada, 27.9%
- Arizona, 21.4%
- Iowa, Oregon and Montana, 18.5%
- Arkansas, 16.3%
- Florida, 16.2%
- South Carolina, 16%
- Texas, 15.9%
- Idaho, 15.7%
- Washington, 15.6%
- North Carolina, 15.5%
- Tennessee, 15.2%
- Wyoming, 14.3%
- Nebraska, 13.9%
- Indiana, 13.8%
- North Dakota, 13.8%
Here’s where the greatest number of new openings during that time frame are forecasted to be:
- Florida, 5,420
- Texas, 5,530
- California, 4,100
- North Carolina, 2,510
- New York, 2,290
- Colorado, 2,000
- Ohio, 1,550
- Pennsylvania, 1,510
- Virginia, 1,500
- Tennessee, 1,360
- Washington, 1,290
- Georgia, 1,270
- New Jersey, 1,170
- Utah, 1,170
- South Carolina, 1,1060
- Indiana, 940
- Maryland, 820
- Missouri and Arizona, 810
- Michigan, 780
Weather and economic growth is expected to contribute to expansion in these states, according to hvacclasses.org.
Build Your HVAC Career with Air Service Co.
HVAC technicians are required across the USA and in Muldrow. To find out more about our openings, view our careers page or call us at 918-212-8943 right away!