An HVAC helper is a technician who works with experienced HVAC technicians as they complete the installation, maintenance, and repair of heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration systems.

These HVAC helpers are usually just starting out compared to professional HVAC technicians, but they remain an important part of quality HVAC service.

Which Tasks Can HVAC Helpers Do?

HVAC helpers will support technicians throughout the process, assisting with tasks like:

  • Carrying and loading equipment and materials
  • Preparing the job site or cleaning up afterwards
  • Supporting the installation, maintenance and repair of heating and cooling systems

They may also conduct basic tests and checks on HVAC systems to ensure they are functioning properly.

How Do You Become an HVAC Helper?

For anyone interested in being an HVAC helper, you generally start by completing a training program or an apprenticeship. It takes an average of several months to a year to complete these programs, which provide hands-on training in the installation and maintenance of HVAC systems. Many programs extend classes to cover related subjects, such as electrical theory and safety practices.

As soon as they complete a training or apprenticeship program, HVAC helpers may choose to become certified by a professional organization, like the HVAC Excellence or the Air Conditioning Contractors of America. You'll become certified after passing an exam, although some programs also require completing a certain amount of work experience or continuing education credits.

How Much Does an HVAC Helper Make?

The amount of money that an HVAC helper can earn will be dependent on how much experience they have, the region where they work and which company they end up working for.

Based on findings from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, typical starting wage for HVAC helpers hovers around $37,000, though a few HVAC helpers may have an opportunity to earn more. With experience and completing more training, HVAC helpers can graduate into fully certified HVAC technicians, which typically earn higher salaries.

Generally, HVAC helpers are key members of any heating and cooling team, helping ensure the quality installation, maintenance, and repair of heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration systems. With the right training and experience, an HVAC helper can expect to be a valuable part of the HVAC industry.