A Look at the Many Career Paths Within the HVAC Business

| January 24, 2014 | 0 Comments


The HVAC industry is ripe with possibilities in terms of job diversity. Opening your own business providing home HVAC repair, while still a popular choice, is not the only option you have with a degree or training in HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning). From assembly personnel and energy auditors to design engineers and controls technicians, there are many career paths that exist within the HVAC industry.

HVAC at a Glance

With a faster than average job outlook of 21 percent by the year 2022, the HVAC industry is steadily growing in all segments, making this a desirable occupation with earnings of $43,640 per year on average. The HVAC industry thrives even when the economy is down, with plenty of room for advancement and fair pay and with little to no fear of lay-offs. With new and complex systems being manufactured every year, it’s essential that technicians in this field have knowledge of computers and electronics as well as troubleshooting skills. Other positions in the HVAC industry include installer, dispatcher, project manager, salesperson, contractor, building superintendent, cost estimator, system test and balance specialist, and fleet manager. Most states require HVAC technicians to be licensed, but no college degree is required.

Diverse Career Paths

With more and more paths diverging off the main HVAC road, there are more and more opportunities for advancement, employment in specialty niches, and connections to other careers like engineering. The industry is moving beyond traditional positions within HVAC firms, with new ones coming down the pike as the years roll on and the need becomes apparent for qualified energy auditors, green-technology specialists and equipment performance-testing specialists. These jobs are found at distributors, surveying companies, manufacturers, energy management firms, and engineering firms. This industry is perfectly positioned to accommodate a range of expertise, knowledge, and skills, as it takes many professionals to develop, build, create, package, service, market, and sell products related to the HVAC industry.

Green-Technology Specialists

These professionals ensure the highest level of quality air through air cleaning technology backed by organizations like the EPA. This could include implementation of environmental treatment systems for a variety of applications.

Assembly Personnel

Assembly personnel are responsible for putting together the components to make a working unit, often working in an assembly line factory setting. They typically handle blower assembly, actuators, sensors, filters, and heater cores.

Research and Development Experts

Research and development professionals must test the products made by assembly techs to ensure they function and can withstand the rigors of the industry. They put the equipment through various tests within the lab, such as wind tunnels, heating labs, ventilation tests, and geothermal climate chambers.

Engineering and Design

Growing technology trends have created the need for strong mechanical and electronics skills due to the knowledge required for wireless communications equipment, networking, building automation, and software development. Backgrounds in engineering and design can prove valuable in the creation of HVAC blueprints, mechanical drawings and schematics, flowcharts and diagrams that utilize state-of-the-art software, and computer systems.

Controls Technician

Controls technicians install and calibrate HVAC equipment to ensure adequate environmental conditions by performing diagnostic tests to find the problem and come up with a solution. They must be skilled in reading control logic diagrams as well as wiring schematics when adjusting pneumatic and other control systems, such as temperature, pressure, and humidity.

Energy Auditing

Energy auditors perform audits of how energy efficient buildings and private homes are, using infrared cameras, fans, and electronics to identify leaks and suggest solutions to save on energy costs.

With so many options at the fingertips of HVAC professionals, this career choice is a diverse one that is only expected to keep growing.

Michael Durden writes on education, professional training, career advice, university life & other associated areas.

Image credit goes to mstatewebservices.

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