Heating & Air Conditioning Mechanic

Jose Posos

Duties/Responsibilities

  • Travel to worksites
  • Follow blueprints or other design specifications to install or repair HVACR systems
  • Connect systems to fuel and water supply lines, air ducts, and other components
  • Install electrical wiring and controls and test for proper operation
  • Inspect and maintain customers’ HVACR systems
  • Test individual components to determine necessary repairs
  • Repair or replace worn or defective parts

Average Hours/Working Schedule

The majority of HVACR technicians work full time, with occasional evening or weekend shifts. During peak heating and cooling seasons, they often work overtime or irregular hours. Although the majority of technicians work for construction contractors, those who are self-employed have the ability to set their own schedules.

Working location(s)

Heating, air conditioning, and refrigeration mechanics and installers mostly work in residential homes, schools, hospitals, office buildings, or factories. Their worksites may be very hot or cold because the heating and cooling system they must repair is broken. Working in cramped spaces is common.

Salary/Wage Potential

$42,530 per year
$20.45 per hour

Education Needed

A growing number of HVACR technicians receive postsecondary instruction from technical and trade schools or community colleges that offer programs in heating, air conditioning, and refrigeration. These programs generally last 6 months to 2 years and lead to a certificate; or in some cases, an associate’s degree.High school students interested in becoming HVACR technicians should take courses in shop, math, and physics. Some knowledge of plumbing or electrical work and a basic understanding of electronics can be helpful.

Skills Required (Personality Traits/ Transferable Skills)

Some HVACR technicians learn their trade on the job, although this is becoming much less common. Informally trained technicians usually begin by assisting experienced technicians with basic tasks, such as insulating refrigerant lines or cleaning furnaces. In time, they move on to more difficult tasks, including cutting and soldering pipes or checking electrical circuits.

Job Outlook/Growth

34% change 2010-2020

Advancement Opportunities or Related Jobs

  • start learning early
  • find out the skills required and learn