If you're looking for a new career with room to grow, heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) is a field to seriously consider. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), jobs in the HVAC trades are expected to grow at a much faster than average rate between 2016 and 2026. If you want a career in the HVAC field, take a look at what you should consider first.
Do You Have Time to Devote to Training?
HVAC technicians are skilled trades-people. While some career paths require a few classes or brief periods of on-the-job training, HVAC training is a much more in-depth educational process. You'll need to devote time to classroom instruction as well as hands-on training.
Along with training before you become a technician, you'll need to participate in continuing education throughout your career. Professional development classes, workshops, and activities give an existing HVAC technician new skills and help them to fine tune the ones they already have. Continuing education also provides technicians with the chance to learn about new technology and new techniques.
Even though the training that an HVAC career takes may seem time consuming, it helps to ensure that you're the best professional possible.
Do You Have a Driver's License?
While driving isn't a primary part of the job, many HVAC technicians need to drive a company van or truck from one job to the next — especially if you work in the residential repair sector. Start your career off with a valid driver’s license to make the difference between getting hired right away and having to wait for a job that doesn't require the use of a car, van, or truck.
If you don't have a driver's license, consider whether you're willing to get one. Along with this consideration, ask yourself how much time you have to get your license. Coordinating your driver's licensing time table with your HVAC education allows you to sync the two up and prepare for every aspect of your career.
Do You Have Clearances/Background Checks?
Not every HVAC job will require a criminal or federal background check. But working in some residential settings, schools, hospitals, or other similar environments may require a background check. Jobs in these areas may require you to work around children or other populations seen as sensitive. This makes having a criminal clearance a bonus and, in some cases, a necessity.
You can apply for background checks/clearances before completing your training program. Each state's application process differs. In most states, a government agency (such as the state welfare or human services department) handles this type of check.
Do You Enjoy Working With People?
An HVAC job may not initially seem like a career that requires constant interpersonal communication. But along with making repairs and installing new equipment, you may also need to interact with customers or your co-workers often. If you don't feel comfortable with or around other people, this is a skill to work on before completing an HVAC educational program.
Do You Enjoy Working Independently?
It may seem like working with people and working independently are opposites — they're not. As an HVAC technician, you need to talk to and communicate with other people. But the actual work (evaluating equipment, installing equipment, and making repairs) is often a solo effort. This requires a sense of independence in operation. If you enjoy working without a boss or manager constantly looking over your shoulder, this is a job for you.
Are you ready to start your journey in the growing HVAC field? Contact us at DeHart Technical School for more information and career options.