5 Most Important Skills Needed to Be an HVAC Technician

portrait of Whitney Sandoval
by Whitney Sandoval
Published on August 26, 2021

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According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), HVAC technicians earned a median annual salary of $50,590 as of May 2020. For those who enjoy problem-solving and helping others, entering this field can be a relatively lucrative career choice. Between 2019 and 2029, the BLS projects 4% job growth for these professionals, which is on par with the national average across fields.

HVAC technicians install, maintain, and repair refrigeration, cooling, heating, and ventilation systems. Some HVAC technicians focus on a particular specialty, such as solar energy or air quality. Others may specialize in installation, maintenance, or repair.

HVAC technicians may work in people's homes or manage systems for large businesses. Additionally, technicians can work for small, locally owned businesses and large corporations. Some HVAC technicians also educate future professionals in this field.

Working conditions for HVAC technicians can vary. Because HVAC equipment can be located indoors or outdoors, you may have to work in small spaces inside, such as attics and crawl spaces, or in harsh weather conditions outside.

HVAC technicians may also experience varied schedules. Although many HVAC technicians work full time, several companies offer after-hours emergency services that may require their employees to work late.

Lester Mclaughlin, Vice President of Operations at Blue National HVAC, acknowledged that HVAC techs sometimes have to work unconventional hours.

"Unfortunately, a big part of the job is being on call. If somebody's furnace breaks at 3 a.m. during a winter snowstorm, it's a matter of life and death, especially if it's an elderly person."

Read on to learn about the skills needed to be an HVAC technician, and find answers to common questions about HVAC careers.

What Skills Are Needed to Be an HVAC Technician?

Becoming an HVAC technician requires an understanding of various systems of technology and machinery. These careers also require several soft skills.

"HVAC technicians need good people skills and high emotional intelligence in order to succeed at their job."

– Lester Mclaughlin

Frequently Asked Questions About Being an HVAC Technician

true How dangerous is HVAC work?

HVAC work involves some serious safety concerns. HVAC workers can be exposed to electrical hazards, dangerous chemicals, and toxins in the air. HVAC workers must follow procedures and wear proper personal protective equipment in case of accidents.

true Do HVAC technicians have to meet continuing education requirements?

Because technology is continually improving and changing, HVAC technicians may need to meet continuing education requirements. Specific requirements for maintaining licensure vary by state, and not all states require HVAC technicians to hold a license.

true Should HVAC technicians be comfortable working in tight spaces?

Since HVAC equipment is often located in attics and basements, technicians should be comfortable working in confined spaces. Some projects may require you to work in crawl spaces. If a repair is lengthy, you may need to spend a long time in a small space.

In an age of climbing tuition costs and unpaid internships, can provide an accelerated, comparatively affordable alternative to a college education. Skilled trades offer rewarding career options for those looking... Completing HVAC technician training can enable you to secure a lucrative and in-demand career. According to the (BLS), as of May 2020, HVAC technicians made a median annual salary of... Learn about the skills needed to be an electrician and how developing these electrician skills can help you excel professionally.

BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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