If you’re considering a new, successful career, look no further than heating, ventilation and air conditioning. HVAC is one of the most rapidly growing careers available, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, which expects jobs in this field will expand by 13 percent by 2028.
There’s a couple of reasons why these positions are growing so fast. One is homeowners using government rebates to get more energy-efficient comfort systems. Then there’s the discontinuation of R-22 Freon® refrigerants, which influences old equipment. Lastly, there’s the red-hot home market and a house shortage that’s driven a boost in new construction houses.
One of the number one needed positions is working as a HVAC technician. Find out about what they do, how to become one and about how much you can expect to earn.
What Is an HVAC Technician?
A HVAC technician is a person who repairs, installs and maintains heating and cooling units. Most work with both residential and commercial customers. And, most important, you’ll be skilled in:
Some are HVAC-R pros, which means they also work with refrigeration.
Is HVAC a Hard Career?
While HVAC can be physically difficult, it can also be extremely satisfying. As a technician you’ll be required to be able to:
- Work in extreme settings, such as crowded or dirty spaces.
- Work in hot or cold areas because equipment is often outdoors.
- Work evenings, weekends and overtime during peak times.
One of the most typical misconceptions about HVAC is that it’s a blue-collar career. You need a specific skill set, in-depth education and ongoing qualifications.
It’s a good career possibility if you want to:
- Not be saddled with a lot of student debt.
- Avoid working at a desk or in an office.
- Have job security being sure your position can’t be outsourced.
- Become your own boss and have your own prosperous business.
How to Become an HVAC Technician
To become an HVAC technician, you will require a high school diploma or GED, as well as comprehensive education. Other more specialized (and higher paying) HVAC positions typically require additional instruction or qualifications.
You can get your certification by attending classes at a community college or trade school. How long it takes to become an HVAC technician is linked to the program, which is typically six months to two years. Your employer may also require NATE certification. Known as North American Technician Excellence, this highly regarded endorsement improves your technical knowledge to help you better serve customers.
Career Explorer says that technicians familiar with tablets, electronics and troubleshooting will be in great demand as equipment evolves.
Another advantage of working in HVAC is little to no instructional 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 may vary depending on your situation. If you do repairs, you could work early, late or be on call. If you work in construction/home building or management, you may have more of a fixed schedule during usual business hours.
As a technician, you’ll respond to different locations for repair, maintenance or installation service. Some tasks could take longer than others, so the number of calls you can go on might vary.
As we talked about previously, you should be used to working outdoors in extreme weather, as well as in dirty or cramped spaces. If you work in a customer-facing role, good customer service skills are always positive.
Average Salary for HVAC Technicians and Other HVAC Careers
Since HVAC is a fast-growing field, 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 may be different based on your areaand its cost of living.
Aside from having your own business, there are a few other extra career opportunities. These involve:
- 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 nation, but even more so in Florida, California, Texas, New York and Illinois. According to hvacclasses.org, these states employ the greatest number of HVAC workers and are dealing with high construction growth. Here’s why:
- Florida: Hurricanes, educational and healthcare buildings.
- California: Wildfires, transportation, energy and utility updates.
- Texas: Hurricanes, energy, utility and other infrastructure updates.
- New York: Residential and infrastructure upgrades.
- Illinois: Companies relocating to the Chicago area.
Where HVAC Technicians Will Be in High Demand in the Future
Projections Central, who makes 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 anticipated 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 development is expected to feed growth in these states, according to hvacclasses.org.
Grow Your HVAC Career with Evenaire Heating & Air Conditioning
HVAC technicians remain in demand across the USA and in Pflugerville. To learn more more about our openings, visit our careers page or contact us at 512-355-1482 today!