New York is known for its high paying jobs, and the HVAC industry is no exception. The hot summers and chilly winters mean there is a huge demand for trained HVAC technicians.
You can work as a service technician at a company or run your own HVAC business. In this guide, you’ll learn everything you need to get your New York HVAC license.
New York does not have any state licensing requirements for HVAC technicians.
There are several types of New York HVAC licenses to advance your career.
The EPA license is required by the federal government for technicians handling units that contain refrigerant chemicals. Technicians who have the EPA Section 608 license make an average of $73,423 per year.
The NATE certificate is an optional New York HVAC license. The NATE organization certifies a technician’s HVAC experience. The job can include basic residential installs and repairs and commercial and industrial projects. NATE technicians make about $15,000 more per year than unlicensed technicians.
Some counties or cities may have requirements for licenses. For example, Buffalo requires all technicians to apply for an HVAC license, while New York City requires technicians to get a Home Improvement Contractor license. Pay ranges form $15 - $41 per hour.
A New York HVAC license offers the following benefits:
Work in major cities with more job opportunities.
Command a higher salary from employers.
Learn how to handle refrigerants.
Offer proof of HVAC knowledge.
Solidify your career in a reliable industry.
Reassure your clients with your professional credentials.
EPA Section 608 license costs $25 to $50 per exam. The NATE certificate fees vary from $50 to $100.
Another cost to consider is liability and workers' compensation insurance. In cities where technicians are required to get their contractor's license, you should expect to pay a few hundred dollars for the required insurance.
There are no statewide education or age requirements for HVAC technicians. New York has several schools where you can get additional training, if desired. The Refrigeration Institute, Harlem School of Technology, and Erie Community College offer students the opportunity to learn about HVAC systems for about $4,000 a year.
To get your EPA section 608 certification, you need to find one of the many EPA-approved testing facilities. You can find both online and in-person programs that offer optional training. Once you pass the exam, you are licensed for life and do not need to take the test again.
If you want a NATE certification, you are required to pass the exams. The NATE organization suggests gaining one to five years of experience before taking the exam. Generally, the core test requires knowledge of HVAC safety, tools, equipment, construction, and temperature measurements. Specialty exams test your ability to install, fabricate, assemble, service, repair, and maintain HVAC systems. All NATE certificates have to be renewed every two years. You can do this by taking a 16-hour course or retaking the exam.
For most local licenses, you can start by visiting the city's website and looking at their resources for local contractors. Then, you usually will submit an application providing proof of your experience, financial stability, education, and understanding of various laws.
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