HVAC Jobs Are in Need: What You'll Do as a Technician and How Much You'll Earn

July 21, 2021

If you’re thinking about a new, high-paying career, look no further than heating, ventilation and air conditioning. HVAC is one of the quickest-growing careers you can find, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, which expects careers in this trade will grow by 13 percent by 2028.

There’s a couple of reasons why these careers are growing so rapidly. One is homeowners using government refunds to install more energy-efficient comfort systems. Then there’s the ban on R-22 Freon® refrigerants, which impacts older equipment. In conclusion, there’s the red-hot real estate market and a home shortage that’s driven a boost in new construction homes.

One of the most needed positions is working as a HVAC technician. Learn more 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 systems. Most assist both homes and businesses. And, most important, you’ll be knowledgeable about:

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

Is HVAC a Hard Career?

While HVAC can be physically challenging, it can also be very satisfying. As a technician you’ll need to be able to:

  • Work in difficult settings, like tight or dirty spaces.
  • Work in hot or cold areas as equipment is often outdoors.
  • Work evenings, weekends and overtime during peak days.

One of the most common misconceptions about HVAC is that it’s a blue-collar job. It requires a certain skill set, extensive training and ongoing certification.

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

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

How to Become an HVAC Technician

To become an HVAC technician, you should have a high school diploma or GED, as well as specialized education. Other more specialized (and higher paying) HVAC jobs often require added education or certifications.

You can become certified by attending 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 may also expect NATE certification. This refers to North American Technician Excellence, this industry-leading endorsement improves your technical expertise to help you better serve customers.

Career Explorer noted that technicians familiar with tablets, electronics and troubleshooting will be in great demand as equipment becomes more technologically advanced.

Another advantage of working in HVAC is little to no educational debt.

According to Midwest Technical Institute, attending a technical or trade school typically runs around $15,000. A community college typically is 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 might vary depending on your employer. If you work in repairs, you might work early, late or be on call. If you work in construction/home building or management, you might 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 tasks could take longer than others, so the number of calls you can take care of may vary.

As we talked about earlier, you should be accustomed to working outdoors in extreme weather, as well as in dirty or cramped areas. 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 quickly growing field, your salary will show 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 could be different based on your stateand its cost of living.

Aside from having your own business, there are a few other other 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 highest number of HVAC workers and are going through major construction growth. Here’s why:

  • Florida: Hurricanes, education and healthcare locations.
  • California: Wildfires, transportation, energy and utility upgrades.
  • 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 develops long-term occupational projections, expects these states to have the highest 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 openings during that time frame are anticipated 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 development is anticipated to contribute to expansion in these states, according to hvacclasses.org.

Engineer Your HVAC Career with Jack's Heating, Cooling, Stoves & Fireplaces

HVAC technicians remain in demand across the country and in Alliance. To find out more about our openings, view our careers page or reach us at 308-321-4703 now!