If you’re wanting to find a new, high-paying career, look no further than heating, ventilation and air conditioning. HVAC is one of the fastest-growing careers available, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, which predicts jobs in this industry will expand by 13 percent by 2028.
There’s several reasons why these positions are increasing so rapidly. One is homeowners using government refunds to get more energy-efficient comfort systems. Then there’s the discontinuation of R-22 Freon® refrigerants, which impacts aging equipment. Finally, there’s the red-hot real estate market and a house shortage that’s driven a boost in new construction residences.
One of the number one needed jobs is working as a HVAC technician. Discover 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 an individual who fixes, installs and maintains heating and cooling equipment. Most serve both homeowners and business owners. And, most important, you’ll be skilled with:
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 fulfilling. As a technician you’ll need to be able to:
- Work in difficult settings, such as crowded or dirty spaces.
- Work in hot or cold areas because equipment is usually outdoors.
- Work evenings, weekends and overtime during peak days.
One of the biggest misconceptions about HVAC is that it’s a blue-collar job. It requires a distinct skill set, extensive training and ongoing qualifications.
It’s a fantastic career option if you want to:
- Not be saddled with heavy amounts of educational debt.
- Avoid being stuck at a desk or in an office.
- Have job security knowing your position can’t be outsourced.
- Work as your own boss and own 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 instruction. Other more specialized (and higher paying) HVAC careers usually require additional instruction or certifications.
You can be certified by taking classes at a community college or trade school. How long it takes to become an HVAC technician relies on the program, which is often six months to two years. Your employer could also expect NATE certification. Known as North American Technician Excellence, this industry-leading certification expands your technical knowledge to help you better serve customers.
Career Explorer noted that technicians who can work with tablets, electronics and troubleshooting will be in great demand as equipment updates.
Another advantage of working in HVAC is little to no student debt.
According to Midwest Technical Institute, attending a technical or trade school usually costs around $15,000. A community college often runs 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 your employer. If you perform 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 set schedule during normal business hours.
As a technician, you’ll visit different locations for repair, maintenance or installation work. Some jobs may need more time than others, so the number of calls you can take care of might vary.
As we mentioned previously, you should be comfortable working outdoors in extreme weather, in addition to in dirty or cramped spots. 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
As HVAC is a fast-growing field, your salary will reflect 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 locationand its cost of living.
In addition to owning your own business, there are several other additional 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 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 going through explosive construction growth. Here’s why:
- Florida: Hurricanes, school and healthcare locations.
- California: Wildfires, transportation, energy and utility upgrades.
- Texas: Hurricanes, energy, utility and other infrastructure upgrades.
- New York: Residential and infrastructure upgrades.
- Illinois: Companies flocking 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 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 improvement is anticipated to feed growth in these states, according to hvacclasses.org.
Build Your HVAC Career with Durable Service
HVAC technicians are needed across the USA and in Holdrege. To find out more about our openings, see our careers page or reach us at 308-995-8177 today!