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 careers in this field will increase by 13 percent by 2028.
There are several reasons why these jobs are growing so quickly. One is homeowners taking advantage of government incentives to upgrade to more energy-efficient comfort systems. Then there’s the ban on R-22 Freon® refrigerants, which influences old equipment. Lastly, there’s the red-hot housing market and a property shortage that’s driven an increase in new construction homes.
One of the most 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 fixes, installs and maintains heating and cooling equipment. Most assist both homeowners and business owners. And, most important, you’ll be skilled in:
Some are HVAC-R techs, 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 satisfying. As a technician you’ll need to be able to:
- Work in uncomfortable settings, like small or dirty spaces.
- Work in hot or cold areas since equipment is often outdoors.
- Work evenings, weekends and overtime during peak times.
One of the most common misconceptions about HVAC is that it’s a blue-collar job. You need a certain skill set, specialized education and ongoing qualifications.
It’s a fantastic career option if you want to:
- Not have heavy amounts of higher education debt.
- Avoid working at a desk or in an office.
- Have job security realizing your position can’t be outsourced.
- Be your own boss and own 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 comprehensive education. Other more specialized (and higher paying) HVAC careers typically must have extra instruction or qualifications.
You can be certified by going to 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 might also want NATE certification. This refers to North American Technician Excellence, this top certification expands your technical knowledge to help you better serve customers.
Career Explorer reports that technicians who have expertise with tablets, electronics and troubleshooting will be in big demand as equipment evolves.
Another advantage of working in HVAC is little to no student debt.
According to Midwest Technical Institute, attending a technical or trade school typically is around $15,000. A community college typically costs around $5,000 annually. By 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 where you work. If you work in repairs, you might work early, late or be on call. If you work in construction/home building or management, you could have more of a fixed schedule during normal business hours.
As a technician, you’ll respond to different locations for repair, maintenance or installation service. Some jobs might take longer than others, so the number of calls you can take care of may vary.
As we talked about previously, you should be comfortable working outdoors in extreme weather, plus dirty or cramped spots. If you work in a customer-facing role, strong customer service skills are always a plus.
Average Salary for HVAC Technicians and Other HVAC Careers
As HVAC is a quickly growing industry, your salary will show it. The national average salary for an HVAC technician is $49,242, according to ZipRecruiter. Top earners receive between $56,600 and $68,000. However, salaries could differ based on your areaand its cost of living.
Aside from running your own business, there are several 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 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 greatest number of HVAC workers and are going through high construction growth. Here’s why:
- Florida: Hurricanes, education and healthcare facilities.
- California: Wildfires, transportation, energy and utility updates.
- Texas: Hurricanes, energy, utility and other infrastructure updates.
- New York: Residential and infrastructure updates.
- Illinois: Companies relocating 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 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 fuel expansion in these states, according to hvacclasses.org.
Grow Your HVAC Career with Rapids Sheet Metal Works Inc
HVAC technicians remain in demand across the nation and in Wisconsin Rapids. To discover more about our openings, go to our careers page or call us at 715-301-0256 right away!