What Do I Need to Do to Get a Missouri HVAC Certification?
In Missouri, there is no state-wide certification for HVAC technicians, but every local licensing board has its own requirements. Therefore, you should check with the organization responsible in your area or the city you would like to work in.
The type of license you need also depends on the kind of work you would like to do. Regular HVAC contractors may have to take an exam, but they don't necessarily need a GED or high school diploma. On the other hand, journeyman contractors or those hoping to become EPA contractors must complete their high school education and sit additional exams.
A regular HVAC contractor is someone who installs heating, ventilation, and air conditioning equipment, helps individuals and businesses maintain their existing systems, and repairs or replaces broken parts. To be able to work this job, you must be at least 18 years old and have worked with HVAC systems for two years. You can gain this experience by becoming an apprentice under a certified contractor.
Additionally, applicants for these types of jobs have to have a valid driver's license, since they will need to drive themselves and their equipment from one job to the next. In most cases, employers require you to have passed an HVAC contractor certification exam before they take you on.
HVAC Journeyman Contractors
Once you've been a contractor for a while, you might want to increase your responsibilities by overseeing apprentices. Journeyman contractors do the same job as regular contractors, but they are also able to supervise others. To work as a journeyman, you must be 18 years old, have completed a high school diploma or GED, and have at least two years' experience working with HVAC systems. You also have to pass the HVAC journeyman examination.
EPA HVAC Contractors
An EPA contractor is authorized to handle refrigerants, so they install, maintain, and dispose of HVAC and refrigeration systems. Since there is an additional risk level involved in this kind of work, contractors must have their GED or high school diploma, have at least two years' experience working with HVAC systems, and complete the EPA Type I and Type II examinations.
Is It Worth Getting Your HVAC License?
Most HVAC contractors agree that getting licensed was a good idea. Employers in this sector usually treat their employees well, the hours are reasonable, and the wages can be high, especially once you complete additional certifications and become a senior contractor. What's more, the training doesn't cost much, and it doesn't take very long. Many people can begin working within a year of starting their course.
Because heating, ventilation, and air conditioning units are present in most private homes and almost every educational institution, public space, and office, it's likely that this job has a bright future. Whether you decide to join an existing business or you set up your own HVAC firm, it won't be difficult for you to find customers in Missouri.
What Are the Best Training Programs in the Local Area?
If you're interested in becoming an HVAC technician, you should first contact your local licensing board to find out what the requirements are. Then, you can apply to a trade school or community college that offers the relevant certification.
Some of the best options in the local area are MTI HVAC School and Metropolitan Community College, but there are various other institutions that offer high-quality programs. When deciding on a school, always follow your licensing board's guidelines and go with their preferred choice.
What Classes Will I Have?
To successfully complete your certification, you will have to take a variety of classes. Your course might be complete within six months, but some of the most comprehensive programs last for two years. You will study subjects such as the fundamentals of refrigeration and air conditioning, electrical systems, mechanical codes, and residential and commercial heating and cooling.
Additionally, your course is likely to include classes on best practices, which help you provide customers with high-quality service. You will also study English composition, since you will need to communicate with other contractors and customers on a regular basis. Finally, many programs require college algebra and a course on green design and energy management.
Do I Need to Take an Exam?
Most people who would like to work as HVAC contractors have to take at least one exam. If you'd like to become a specialist or a journeyman, you might have to take several. To prepare, you should study for at least six weeks and go over all your course materials several times. There are also online mock tests you can complete. Don't forget to review service, installation, and maintenance videos, since they will almost certainly come up.
The pass rate of the standard examination is around 70%, so you shouldn't have too much trouble if you apply yourself. However, you might want to team up with a study group or ask a certified HVAC technician for help. By working with others, you can hold yourself accountable. Once you've passed your exam, you should stay up to date with new developments in HVAC. Depending on your area, you might have to have your license renewed regularly.
Getting an HVAC certification doesn't have to be time-consuming or expensive, but almost all applicants need to take an exam before they can become a heating, ventilation, and air conditioning contractor. After you decide that this is a viable career path for you, you should look for quoting, organizing, and invoicing software.
Call us today at ServiceBox to find out more about how to set up a successful and lucrative HVAC business.