hvac technician

What does a HVAC Tech do?

HVAC (Heating, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration) technicians repair, maintain, and install heating, air-conditioning and refrigeration systems. They are responsible for heating, cooling, and air quality in residential homes and businesses. This job is often done outdoors in hot or cold climates and you may need to work in tight spaces.

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How to Become a HVAC Tech

hvac technician

A heating, air conditioning, and refrigeration mechanic/installer, often referred to as HVACR. An HVAC technician is expected to complete an apprenticeship program of 3-5 years which would require you to be at least 18 years old, have a high school diploma or equivalent, pass a basic math test, pass a substance abuse screening, and have a valid drivers license.

You can take courses from trade schools or community colleges with courses in heating, air conditioning, and refrigeration. These schools usually last anywhere from 6 months to 2 years to become certified or receive an associate’s degree. Some states or localities require a license. Those with computer skills, electronics, and troubleshooting experience have the most advantage for employment.

Job Description of a HVAC Tech

A heating, air conditioning, and refrigeration mechanic/installer works on units that provide air quality and temperature control in homes, hospitals, and businesses. They use design specifications or blueprints to repair or install units and test the systems for proper working order.

HVAC techs replace or repair parts or units and advise clients how to improve a system to become energy efficient. A HVACR may choose to specialize in a particular area of equipment, like solar panels or other types of systems or may wish to focus on maintenance and installation. They must be current on government regulation when working with air conditioning or refrigeration units and need to be aware of the correct way to dispose and handle pressurized gases and fluids.

Article Citations

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Heating, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration Mechanics and Installers.

National Center for O*NET Development. 49-9021.01. O*NET OnLine.