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Chances are, you have had to hire a technician to install your HVAC unit, but have never seriously thought about their training and what their work entails. Learn for yourself about what happens in the daily life of the technicians at

A trained technician not only installs but also maintains and repairs air conditioning, heating, ventilation and refrigeration systems that regulate the temperature and air quality inside buildings.

Technicians are usually trained in all three areas but can work with any of the systems they prefer. During training, they can choose their area of specialty, whether in repair, installation or maintenance.  Their specialty can also be on a particular equipment, for example, commercial refrigeration, solar technology systems and water-based heating systems.

What is the job of the HVAC technician?

Usually a technician workday begins with gathering information about a particular task that needs to be tackled. Employers will send technicians to go to clients to look at any issues they may be having with their HVAC units.  However, customers may reach out to technicians directly. Whatever the job is, whether it is repairing a leaking pipe, replacing mechanical parts that are defective or damaged or adjusting the equipment setting for improved performance, the technician is qualified to handle this. Normally, technicians will be engaged in doing any one of, or a combination of the following:

  • Examine blueprints and other requirements
  • Check for leaks in connections, pipe or tubing joints.
  • Check electrical circuits or mechanisms for continuity
  • Repair or replace equipment that is malfunctioning
  • Change filters, clean ducts or refill refrigerants to improve the performance of the HVAC system.
  • Install, connect, or adjust timers, thermostats or humidistats.
  • Connect HVAC equipment to refrigerant sources, fuel, or water,
  • Adjust system controls to stabilize system
  • Assemble, position, and mount the equipment
  • Cut or drill holes in buildings
  • Plan, design, and install low voltage electrical wiring
  • Go on after-hours calls.
  • Record and relate time, faults, materials, deficiencies, and other incidents on work orders

Let’s look in details at the main tasks that technicians do while on the job.


Standard procedure requires the technician to install a unit, following the specifications given by an architect. Before doing the installation however, the required calculations must be completed to find out the most suitable system. Upon installation, the technician must now test the connections and pipes and hook up the HVAC unit to the distribution system. It is a requirement that refrigerant technicians are licensed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and they are responsible for charging the system with refrigerant. See here


All cooling, heating and ventilation systems require regular maintenance checks to ensure optimum perform. These checks are needed biannually, at the start of spring and autumn.  In these maintenance checks the technician usually test and clean the blower fan, check the cooling system’s coolant level and test the thermostat and operation of the system.


Heating and ventilation systems technicians handle all related problems or issues of the HVAC unit; compressors, refrigerant levels, air control system and the thermostats and other controls.


In work situations where union affiliation is not a problem, the technician can assemble and install the ductwork that circulates the warm or cool air from the system. This involves cutting of metals sheets to make ducts, connecting the ducts to the unit and setting up the ductwork.

There are technicians who sell service contracts to their customers and provide regular maintenance of heating and ventilation systems.  Sometimes other tradespeople work with these technicians to install or repair the systems.

With increasing energy costs, building operators are concerned about energy conservation. This means that these technicians may be required to resolve usage of energy by HVAC/R systems, conduct system upgrade, install green heat pumps or smart thermometers and the checking of the energy usage occasionally.

In addition, all technicians are required to stick to government regulations and local HVAC guidelines in terms of handling, recycling, recovery, conservation and discarding of refrigerants and other fluids. URL:,_ventilation,_and_air_conditioning

Technicians can also advise customers on how to avoid future problems and how to maintain equipment such as changing filters or oiling parts regularly. Basically, the technician’s main job is preventing problems, help customers save money and keep customers comfortable.