If you’re thinking about a new, successful career, look no further than heating, ventilation and air conditioning. HVAC is one of the most rapidly growing careers offered, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, which expects positions in this field will expand by 13 percent by 2028.
There’s a few reasons why these jobs are growing so rapidly. One is homeowners taking advantage of government rebates to purchase more energy-efficient comfort systems. Then there’s the end of R-22 Freon® refrigerants, which affects older equipment. In conclusion, there’s the red-hot housing market and a house shortage that’s driven a boost in new construction houses.
One of the top in-demand careers is working as a HVAC technician. Find out about what they do, how to become one and about how much you can expect to make.
What Is an HVAC Technician?
A HVAC technician is a person who services, installs and maintains heating and cooling systems. Most assist both homes and businesses. And, most important, you’ll be skilled with:
Some are HVAC-R pros, which means they also can take care of refrigeration.
Is HVAC a Hard Career?
While HVAC can be physically difficult, it can also be very rewarding. As a technician you’ll need to be able to:
- Work in extreme settings, including crowded or dirty spaces.
- Work in hot or cold areas since equipment is typically outdoors.
- Work evenings, weekends and overtime during peak days.
One of the most typical misconceptions about HVAC is that it’s a blue-collar career. You have to have a distinct skill set, in-depth instruction and ongoing qualifications.
It’s an excellent career choice if you want to:
- Not be saddled with excessive higher education debt.
- Avoid sitting at a desk or in an office.
- Have job security realizing your position can’t be outsourced.
- Become your own boss and run your own successful business.
How to Become an HVAC Technician
To become an HVAC technician, you will require a high school diploma or GED, in addition to in-depth training. Other more specialized (and higher paying) HVAC positions usually require added schooling or qualifications.
You can be certified by attending classes at a community college or trade school. How long it takes to become an HVAC technician depends on the program, which is usually six months to two years. Your employer could also expect NATE certification. Known as North American Technician Excellence, this top certification increases your technical expertise to help you better serve customers.
Career Explorer reports that technicians familiar with tablets, electronics and troubleshooting will be in big demand as equipment updates.
Another benefit of working in HVAC is little to no educational debt.
According to Midwest Technical Institute, attending a technical or trade school typically is around $15,000. A community college typically runs around $5,000 annually. In comparison, 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 work in 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 fixed schedule during typical business hours.
As a technician, you’ll go to different locations for repair, maintenance or installation jobs. Some work may need more time than others, so the number of calls you can take care of may vary.
As we mentioned previously, you should be accustomed to working outdoors in extreme weather, plus in dirty or cramped areas. If you work in a customer-facing role, solid customer service skills are always a plus.
Average Salary for HVAC Technicians and Other HVAC Careers
Because HVAC is a quickly growing career, your salary will reflect 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 could fluctuate based on your stateand its cost of living.
Other than having your own business, there are several other extra 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 in demand 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 experiencing major construction growth. Here’s why:
- Florida: Hurricanes, educational and healthcare locations.
- California: Wildfires, transportation, energy and utility upgrades.
- Texas: Hurricanes, energy, utility and other infrastructure updates.
- New York: Residential and infrastructure updates.
- Illinois: Companies moving to the Chicago area.
Where HVAC Technicians Will Be in High Demand in the Future
Projections Central, who creates long-term occupational projections, expects these states to have the biggest 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 biggest number of new jobs 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 improvement is expected to contribute to growth in these states, according to hvacclasses.org.
Engineer Your HVAC Career with Air Alliance Team
HVAC technicians are needed across the USA and in Ballwin and St. Charles. To discover more about our openings, view our careers page or contact us at 636-206-4250 today!