Heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems are essential to keeping the temperature inside your residential home or commercial building comfortably cool or warm. To install, repair and maintain these machines, you need the help of a professional air conditioning contractor or technician.
Air conditioning contractors are trained to work with furnaces, AC units, and heating systems. However, this is not a skill they acquire overnight. After high school, certified AC contractors must attend trade school. Here, they learn brand specific technologies, how to install a window compressor, split HVAC units, and even how to replace the pumps in these different machines. After finishing their trade school program, technicians must then look for an apprenticeship with an experienced trade-person. In the apprenticeship, technicians learn how to apply the skills they learned in school in a practical way. Depending on the type of master contractor they are working with, they can learn everything from working with a complex refrigeration system found in transport trucks or restaurants, to making minor repairs to a portable air conditioning unit.
When the apprenticeship is done, the HVAC technician is ready to move on to working full time for another company. However, this person is still not certified. After gaining enough experience, the technician may take an EPA licensing test, showing he or she knows how to work with central HVAC systems, mobile air conditioning units, heating furnaces, and more. Finally, after all of this, a technician can move on to take on his or her own apprentices, supervised a HVAC team, or even just continue working at his or her previous job.