An HVAC mechanic performs installation and maintenance on heating & air conditioning systems along with refrigeration units. All these units come in various sizes and capacities and are installed in different locations on the job-site. The HVAC mechanic analyzes these systems to make sure the units are running smoothly, efficiently and safely. HVAC mechanics are required and expected to be able to read and understand system blueprints and schematics as well as being able to prepare sketches and perform any additional duties assigned.

To qualify as an HVAC mechanic, a high school education or GED is required as well as an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) certification for handling and using refrigerants. HVAC mechanics must have interpersonal skills and be able to meet deadlines. This position may be physically demanding and may require the mechanic to work in many different settings including extreme heat or cold. The ability to lift 50 pounds or more along with the ability to stand, bend, kneel and climb ladders and scaffolding while performing mechanical tasks is expected. HVAC mechanics may work part time or full time; their hours may also depend on service calls as well as the employers’ needs and hours.


  • Calibrate thermostats and ensure appropriate temperatures are maintained.
  • Oversee outside contractors and HVAC technicians to ensure timely service and performance.
  • Repair and rebuild complex commercial HVAC and environmental systems, touring and inspecting regularly.
  • Keep all HVAC and mechanical rooms clean, orderly, and organized.

Term of Apprenticeship

The term of training for a HVAC will include 8,000 hours (4 years) of structured on-the-job learning (OJL), supplemented by the required hours of related instruction, that will lead to successful completion of the required Core Competencies as stated in the Core Competency Requirements. The term of apprenticeship for all HVAC will include at a minimum 144 hours of structured Related Training Instruction (RTI). Full credit will be given for on-the-job learning evaluated as satisfactory and previous acquisition of the required competencies.

Instruction and experience shall include the listed operations but not necessarily in that sequence. Time spent on specific operations need not be continuous.

On-the-Job Learning Competencies

General Trade Orientation - 350 hrs
Care & use of tools, test & measurement devices, types & sizes of fittings, pipings, & tubing, safety procedures, equipment records & reports

Fabrication of Systems Components - 550 hrs
Thread, flare, bend, shape piping and tubing, install fittings, solder & braze tin fittings & components, care & use of torches, silver & soft soldering

System Installation and Connection - 1600 hrs
Electrical supply lines and cables, electrical connections, water service lines, air supply lines, steam lines & steam return lines, steam traps & strainers, pressure reduction, expansion, evaporators, stop valves, suction & discharge lines, gauges, dehydrators, filters & controls

Equipment Installation - 950 hrs
Install condensers, prepare compressor & motor bases, install & align compressors & motors, install evaporators & other cooling coils, install & align centrifugal pumps & bases, use slings, lines, blocks & falls, chain hoists, rollers, dollies & skids

System Maintenance - 1050 hrs
Troubleshoot field systems, test pressures & flows, check liquid levels, check & repair leaks, purge, dehydrate & recharge systems, repair, align, adjust fans & blowers, align pulleys, bearing blocks & belt tension

Equipment Repair - 2900 hrs
Disassemble and clean, repair, renew, and test compressors, repair & pressure test dehydrate evaporators, repair condensers, roll condenser tubes; remove, replace, disassemble, test, clean, calibrate, and renew parts on controls of all types Pneumatic, Electrical, Electrical-pneumatic, Thermostatic, Humidity, Pressure & Vacuum

Machine Shop Practice - 300 hrs
Use of grinders, drill presses, lathes; tool and drill sharpening

Miscellaneous - 300 hrs
Housekeeping & safety