Mechanic School Is The First Step to A Lucrative HVAC Career
A career in HVAC, or heating, ventilation, and air conditioning, can be extremely rewarding and profitable. But in order to make it in HVAC, you need to go to mechanic school, and often go through apprenticeships and on-the-job training. It's important to know what the journey will be like and whether HVAC is right for you before committing to the field. So let's take a look at what a career in HVAC looks like and how you can go about getting into the industry.
Is HVAC The Right Fit For You?
Before you invest in mechanic school and apprenticeships, you should consider the pros and cons of being an HVAC technician. Like any career that's worth pursuing, it's not easy, but if you are up to the challenge than it can be immensely rewarding.
If you do decide to become an HVAC technician, what will your job prospects look like? Well, the HVAC industry is extremely healthy, and with the right training, you should have great job stability and flexibility – not to mention good pay. The job growth rate is significantly higher than average, meaning that now is the right time to get into HVAC. While systems always need to be repaired, the majority of growth comes from installing new systems, usually in construction. So, when the economy is strong and there are lots of new construction projects, the HVAC industry booms – but the need to maintain those systems means that you should have good job security no matter what.
The median HVAC mechanic and installer makes $22.64 per hour or $47,080 per year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That's one of the higher salaries coming out of mechanic school, meaning that if you need financial security then HVAC may well be the right choice for you. Of course, pay varies based on education and experience, so if you go to a high-quality mechanic school that prepares you for high-level apprenticeships you can expect to make even more.
While most HVAC technicians work for companies, the job also provides the opportunity to work independently. That means you'll need to be a bit of a self-starter to succeed, but you also will have a lot of control over your work. The reason for going independent is simple: HVAC systems cannot come to you so you have to go to them. That means that you will spend most of your time traveling to different sites and working on the systems, often without other technicians or a supervisor. You'll get to make the calls in the field and see the results of your efforts. Instead of spending all of your time in an office or garage, you get to spend it on the road without anyone breathing down your neck. Don't worry about getting lonely though – traveling to so many sites means that you're constantly meeting new people and developing key customer relations skills.
So, HVAC provides an opportunity for flexible, profitable work in an industry that is constantly growing. If you make it in this field then your work will be exciting, challenging, and immensely rewarding. But how do you go about becoming an HVAC technician?
The Path to Becoming an HVAC Technician
An HVAC technician gets such high pay and independence because the job is highly skilled. HVAC systems are extremely complex, and new technology is constantly being developed, meaning you need to adapt and learn new skills. Also, unlike in some other technical fields, you frequently need a certification to work in HVAC – especially if you also work with refrigerants. And the place to learn those skills and earn your certification is at a mechanic school.
HVAC school typically takes between six months and two years to complete. Obviously, the longer programs will prepare you to take on more complex, independent, and high-paying jobs. It's also important to choose the right school – it should be accredited by an independent agency and offer small class sizes with lots of opportunities for getting your hands dirty instead of just listening to lectures. Being an HVAC technician is a very hands-on job, so you want to make sure that mechanic school gives you practical skills instead of just theory. If the school has its own lab workspace and can connect you with internships and apprenticeships, then you will be well on your way to becoming an HVAC technician.
After you graduate from a mechanic school, your training isn't yet finished. A lot of skills can only be learned through on-the-job training, so new technicians typically enter apprenticeships that can last from three to five years. This may sound intimidating, but apprentices are still paid well, and once you complete your apprenticeship you will be extremely employable. These years will teach you the ins and outs of working as an HVAC technician, and firmly establish you in the industry. Just make sure you've attended mechanic school so you can secure a worthwhile apprenticeship.
Ready to Get Started?
Are you ready to start your journey to a profitable and rewarding career as an HVAC technician? Then it's time to apply to mechanic school and start learning the skills you'll need to succeed. But, there are so many mechanic schools out there, how on earth can you pick the right one? Well, MechanicSchool.com is here to help!