In 2022, the average annual pay of a heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) technician was $57,460, and the top 10% made $82,630 (Salary Reference: BLS).
What works when trying to raise your income? Here's a list of tips for increasing your HVAC technician salary.
Know Your Competition
Do you live in a crowded area with lots of people vying for one position, or do you live somewhere small where there are few applicants? Does your employer care about your certifications, or is he or she more concerned with experience and performance? You can tailor what you do with what employers are looking for from you.
Putting in the Hours
The more work experience you have typically the better your pay. However, working all sorts of installations and repairs takes time.
To speed up developing your on-the-job expertise, get all the experience you can while on the clock. See if you can volunteer your services to other organizations (installing an air conditioner at the local community center, etc.).
Going Back to Class
Extra class time means more practice and shows you're keeping up with the latest technology advances. Earning certifications such as those offered by NATE can only help your chances for a raise.
Your local training program has instructors who know the industry. You can get valuable advice from their time in the field. Even if an employer isn't concerned with another degree, they will be impressed that you're taking the time to learn more about how you can be better at your job.
Staying On Top of the Industry
Some fields may be more lucrative than others. For example, commercial buildings may pay more than residential ones. Understanding the industry makes you more prepared to learn the skills that equal higher salaries. You’ll also be more flexible if a new technique or field rapidly emerges.
Don't Do It Just for the Money
Remember, improving your skill set is not just about earning more. By gaining more skills, you can take on more responsibility and start in management positions.
Getting to the salary you want requires you to put in the work. Always remember, effort is attractive, and employers are looking for experience. Find areas you like working in and jobs you enjoy doing.
And if you haven't yet started HVAC training, but are interested in the field, you can see what schools are available in your area or online here. Training can be completed in as few as six months.
Looking for HVAC technician training? Find local programs.