Heating & Cooling (HVAC)

Choosing a career in the heating and cooling (HVAC) trade means working in a job that positively impacts your community. The overall health of the community depends on the skilled trades because these professions maintain a clean water supply, safeguard indoor air quality, and keep the lights on.

The job opportunities available in the trades, specifically in the HVAC trade, are vast. Did you know that HVAC technicians work in places like wind farms, research labs, and even on cars? Basically, wherever you need heat and air conditioning, you’ll find an HVAC professional.

Wherever you want to be in the world, the skilled trades can take you there!

Why HVAC? Jobs Apprenticeships How to Become
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Unlike other career paths that require years of schooling and come with large student loans, in the field of HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) you will be trained on the job – and get paid at the same time. HVAC technicians start their careers in an apprenticeship, learning with a combination of on-the-job training and classroom instruction.


A career in HVAC has great earning potential. The latest numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2021 show that the average salary of an HVAC technician is $48,630/year.


The demand for skilled tradespeople continues to grow. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment in heating, air conditioning, and refrigeration is projected to grow 5% from 2021-2031.


Science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) are the essential building blocks of careers that cross industries and impact our daily lives in different ways. STEM is the foundation of technical careers that propel our future workforce forward to stability, career growth and success. STEM is the skilled trade of HVAC.


New technologies in heating and cooling homes are making old systems obsolete. Consumers are now more informed about the importance of maintaining their heating and cooling systems, and by choosing a career in HVAC means you’ll be at the forefront of advances in these technologies and assisting homeowners. You can be proud of the fact that you’re not only improving the lives of homeowners through the HVAC trade, but you’ll also be helping save the planet.

Job growth within the HVAC field is one of the greatest factors in deciding to move forward with a career as an HVAC technician. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that the HVAC field will experience growth of 14% during the years from 2014-2024. This percentage of job growth is massive, taking the 292,000 HVAC jobs back in 2014 and adding as many as 39,600 in just 10 years. With this kind of growth HVAC techs will be in demand, which will grant you more job security and a growing salary.

Why is the job growth so great for HVAC specialists? With new technologies available in today’s marketplace older HVAC equipment is far less efficient than today’s models, costing consumers more money to run, offering less comfort and also taking a larger toll on the environment. In an effort to ‘go green’ while saving money and providing better comfort levels for their homes and workplaces, consumers are making the change to newer HVAC systems. Consumers are also more educated on how keeping their HVAC equipment maintained will benefit them in the long run. With projections of system installations and maintenance on the rise, HVAC techs will be busier than ever.

HVAC technicians have a great earning potential. The BLS.gov shows that the average HVAC technician makes $46,000/year, with the top 10% of the industry earning approximately $67,000. Overtime pay is also a great benefit during extreme temperatures, giving you the chance to work more and earn extra money. With that said, Wiki.Answers.com reports that the HVAC industry is projecting a pay increase of up to 40%in the next few years. They also note that if you work as an HVAC technician for a larger company you will likely make more than $80,000 annually.

When considering becoming an HVAC technician you are considering a career path that grants you the opportunity to find a job today. The demand for skilled tradespeople continues to grow across the USA.

‘Right now, American manufacturing is struggling to fill 200,000 vacant positions. There are 450,000 openings in trades, transportation and utilities. The Skills Gap is real, and it’s getting wider. In Alabama, a third of all skilled tradesmen are over 55. They’re retiring fast, and no one is there to replace them.’  

– Mike Rowe

Choosing a career as an HVAC technician presents you with an exciting professional path that promises job security and excellent earnings potential. Along with these great perks, becoming an HVAC tech provides hard working, committed technicians with the rewards of advancement potential within their field. From the starting position of a field technician you can climb the HVAC career ladder to gain more responsibility, begin to manage jobs and individuals, and ultimately make more money. HVAC technicians can advance from service technicians to installers, operation managers and distribution managers based on their hard work and commitment to their field.

HVAC tech


A career in HVAC offers great pay, benefits, job security and professional satisfaction. Explore The Trades is your complete resource for everything you need to get started and advance your career. Connect with the right people, the right information and get the right answers to get your career in gear!

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What is an Apprenticeship?
Understanding The Role of an HVAC Technician

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A hard working HVAC technician inspects the filter in an air cooling system.

Sustainability in the HVAC Trade

Heating, ventilation, and air are incredibly important when it comes to sustainability. The quality of air inside a home can play a huge role in ensuring the health of those who live there. Along with public health and the increased demand for renewable energy, the HVAC industry has continued to develop and adapt equipment to lessen its environmental impact.

See the examples below to learn how the HVAC trade is providing more energy-efficient options.

  • Geothermal Heat Pumps: Geothermal heat pumps transfer heat from a cool space to a warm space from solar energy stored in the ground. Because they transfer heat instead of generating heat, these pumps can more efficiently change the temperature in a home.
  • Mini-Split Heat Pumps: This equipment uses one indoor unit and one outdoor unit, allowing for specific rooms to be heated or cooled and less energy to be used.
  • Solar Air Conditioning: Instead of relying on electricity for power, these units use solar panels for power.
  • Quiet Duct Wrap: Quiet duct wrap is made from recycled denim recovered from landfills and prevents irritants or other organic compounds from reducing air quality.

See sustainability at work in the electrical and plumbing trades!

From School to the Skilled Trades : HVAC

Have you ever wondered which high school classes prepare you for a career in the trades?

We’ve created a brand-new series of downloads that illustrate the connections between high school and the skilled trades.

Learn more about classes that prepare you for the HVAC trade! Download “From School to the Skilled Trades.”

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