If you’re considering a new, successful career, look no further than heating, ventilation and air conditioning. HVAC is one of the fastest-growing careers you can find, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, which predicts careers in this field will grow by 13 percent by 2028.

There are several reasons why these positions are growing so rapidly. One is homeowners tapping into government refunds to purchase more energy-efficient comfort systems. Then there’s the ban on R-22 Freon® refrigerants, which impacts old equipment. Lastly, there’s the red-hot housing market and a house shortage that’s driven a bump in new construction houses.

One of the number one needed positions is working as an HVAC technician. Learn more about what they do, how to become one and about how much you can expect to earn.

What Is a Professional HVAC Technician?

An HVAC technician is an individual who fixes, installs and maintains heating and cooling units. Most work with both homeowners and business owners. And, most important, you’ll be skilled in:

Some are HVAC-R technicians, which means they also can do refrigeration.

Is a Career in HVAC Difficult?

While HVAC can be physically difficult, it can also be highly satisfying. As a technician you should be able to:

  • Work in difficult settings, such as crowded or dirty spaces.
  • Work in hot or cold areas as 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 career. It requires a specific skill set, extensive training and ongoing endorsements.

It’s a good career option if you want to:

  • Not be saddled with heavy amounts of higher education debt.
  • Avoid working at a desk or in an office.
  • Have job security knowing your position can’t be outsourced.
  • Be your own boss and run your own successful business.

How to Become a Professional HVAC Technician

To become an HVAC technician, you will require a high school diploma or GED, in addition to comprehensive instruction. Other more specialized (and higher paying) HVAC positions typically must have extra education or qualifications.

You can become certified 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 often six months to two years. Your employer may also require NATE certification. This stands for North American Technician Excellence, this top certification increases your technical expertise to help you better serve customers.

Career Explorer reports that technicians who can work with tablets, electronics and troubleshooting will be in large 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 usually costs 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.

The Average Career of an HVAC Technician

Your work schedule may vary depending on your employer. If you do repairs, you may work early, late or be on call. If you work in construction/home building or management, you may have more of a regular schedule during usual business hours.

As a technician, you’ll go to different locations for repair, maintenance or installation jobs. Some jobs might require more time than others, so the number of calls you can take care of might vary.

As we talked about previously, you should be comfortable working outdoors in extreme weather, in addition to dirty or cramped spots. If you work in a customer-facing role, good customer service skills are always positive.

Typical Salary Rates for {Professional Technicians|Technicians|Full-Time Technicians and Similar HVAC Jobs

Since HVAC is a rapidly expanding field, your salary will reflect it. The national average salary for an HVAC technician is $49,242, according to ZipRecruiter. Top earners get between $56,600 and $68,000. However, salaries may be different based on your state and its cost of living.

In addition to having 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 the Demand for HVAC Technicians Is Highest

HVAC technicians are needed 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, educational and healthcare locations.
  • California: Wildfires, transportation, energy and utility projects.
  • Texas: Hurricanes, energy, utility and other infrastructure upgrades.
  • 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 develops long-term occupational projections, anticipates these states to have the greatest demand for technicians by 2028:

  1. Utah, 31.1%
  2. Colorado, 29.7%
  3. Nevada, 27.9%
  4. Arizona, 21.4%
  5. Iowa, Oregon and Montana, 18.5%
  6. Arkansas, 16.3%
  7. Florida, 16.2%
  8. South Carolina, 16%
  9. Texas, 15.9%
  10. Idaho, 15.7%
  11. Washington, 15.6%
  12. North Carolina, 15.5%
  13. Tennessee, 15.2%
  14. Wyoming, 14.3%
  15. Nebraska, 13.9%
  16. Indiana, 13.8%
  17. North Dakota, 13.8%

Here’s where the greatest number of new positions during that time frame are forecasted to be:

  1. Florida, 5,420
  2. Texas, 5,530
  3. California, 4,100
  4. North Carolina, 2,510
  5. New York, 2,290
  6. Colorado, 2,000
  7. Ohio, 1,550
  8. Pennsylvania, 1,510
  9. Virginia, 1,500
  10. Tennessee, 1,360
  11. Washington, 1,290
  12. Georgia, 1,270
  13. New Jersey, 1,170
  14. Utah, 1,170
  15. South Carolina, 1,1060
  16. Indiana, 940
  17. Maryland, 820
  18. Missouri and Arizona, 810
  19. Michigan, 780

Weather and economic growth is expected to feed growth in these states, according to hvacclasses.org.

Kickstart a Career in HVAC with Northwest Services

HVAC technicians remain in demand across the nation and in Swanton. To learn more more about our openings, see our careers page or reach us at 419-548-5017 right away!