Those who would like working as a mechanic can consider training as an HVAC technician.
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The Bureau of Labor Statistics foresaw growth of 21% in demand for this profession between 2012 and 2022, meaning this is a secure trade to get into.
Even the salary is promising, as in Idaho the average one is $44,027 per year while top HVAC workers earn around $49,889 per year.
Across the United States, an HVAC specialist makes around $46,648 per year, with the top salaries reaching $52,858 per year.
|Location||Avg. Annual Salary|
Getting Your License
To work in this field you must obtain a certification from the Idaho Division of Building Safety.
What’s more, is that you can get one of the 6 types of licenses available based on your experience and skills.
There are 2 conditions one has to meet for this license:
- be employed by a licensed HVAC contractor and work While supervised by a licensed HVAC journeyman for 4 years
- complete a training program in relation to mechanical engineering and the principles of thermodynamics
The registration as an apprentice in this field is valid 5 years and it isn’t synonyms with having a license or certification, and it also doesn’t indicate the level of competency of the holder.
The registration for the certification costs $50.
HVAC Specialty Apprentice
To qualify as a Specialty Apprentice you must meet the same requirements as above, with the sole difference that both the HAVC contractor and journeyman must be specialized.
This registration lasts for 2 years, and it also not a certification nor does it show the level of competency of its holder.
For the license, you have to pay $20.
Check out the schools below if you’re interested in finding a training course.
|College of Southern Idaho||315 Falls Ave. Twin Falls, Idaho 83301|
|College of Western Idaho||Nampa Campus Academic Building 5500 E. Opportunity Dr. Nampa, ID 83687|
|Eastern Idaho Technical College||1600 S 25th E, Idaho Falls, ID 83404|
|Lewis-Clark State College||500 8th Avenue, Lewiston, ID 83501|
|North Idaho College||1000 West Garden Avenue Coeur d'Alene, Idaho 83814|
To qualify, you must meet the following requirements:
- Being employed for at least 4 years; OR
- Having worked under supervision for 4 years; OR
- Having completed a 4-year apprenticeship
Certifications issued by other states or recognized jurisdictions can also be used instead of the experience.
If you come from a non-recognized jurisdiction, then you must prove 4 years of experience in the field along with 4 years of apprenticeship.
8 years or 16,000 hours, of experience can also be used as the basis for this license.
To apply for this certification you must pay a fee of $35.
HVAC Specialty Journeyman
This license is available only for these 4 specialties:
- Fuel Gas Piping
- Waste Oil Heating
- LP Limited Heating
You need at least 1 year of work experience when applying for this license.
Those applying for the LP Limited Heating need 2 years of work experience.
Regardless of which certification you want to get, the previous work experience must be within the scope of the license.
60 hours or 120 for the LP Limited Heating, of classroom education are also required.
The fee for this license is still $35.
To qualify for the HVAC Contractor exam you have to meet these requirements:
- Minimum 2 years of experience as an HVAC Journeyman in Idaho (other jurisdictions are also accepted)
- submit the Compliance Bond of $2,000 in the name of the company
The application fee is again $35.
HVAC Specialty Contractor
The requirements for this certification are the same as above, only that the experience must be as a specialty journeyman.
The journeyman license can be used as proof for the gained experience.
For those who come out of state, must submit the Employer’s Verification Form(s) that was (or were) notarized.
The fee to apply for this certification is again $35.
The Idaho Division of Building Society’s website has all the application forms.
If your application gets accepted, the Division will mail you when you have to take the exam.
Both journeyman exams last for 4 hours have 120 questions and the passing score is minimum 70%
These are the subjects covered by the exam:
- Scope and Administration
- General Regulations
- Exhaust Systems
- Duct Systems
- Chimneys and Vents
- Specific Appliances, Fireplaces, and Solid Fuel-Burning Equipment
- Boilers, Water Heaters, and Pressure Vessels
- Hydronic Piping
- Fuel Oil Piping Storage
- Solar Systems
- International Fuel Gas Code (IFGC)
- Gas Piping Installations
- Gaseous Hydrogen Systems
- Sizing and Drawings
- Idaho HVAC Statutes and Rules
Both contractor license exams are open-book, have 110 questions and last for 4 hours long.
The minimum score to pass is 70%.
These are the books to prepare from and allowed as reference:
- International Fuel Gas Code, 2012
- International Mechanical Code, 2012
- Idaho Contractors Business and Law Reference Manual
- Idaho HVAC Statutes and Rules
Those working with regulated refrigerants must pass the Environmental Protection Agency 608 Technician Certification exam.
This is a certification needed across the nation, according to Section 608 of the Federal Clean Air Act.
Working as an HVAC technician is a great career opportunity not only in Idaho but all over the USA.
The process of becoming one is pretty easy, though a license is needed, and it will take some time to advance from an apprentice to a journeyman or contractor.
Read the full guide: How to Become an HVAC Technician