12 Types of HVAC Jobs (With Salaries)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated January 4, 2023

Published May 11, 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

There are a variety of industries and career paths that offer fair wages and may not require a college degree. One such industry is heating, ventilation and air-conditioning, commonly known as HVAC. Although higher education may be necessary for some advanced positions, there are many types of HVAC jobs related to installing and maintaining equipment that offer attractive salaries to candidates with a high school diploma or trade certificate.

In this article, we provide a list of 12 careers you might consider if you're interested in working with HVAC systems, with salary information and a comprehensive description of duties for each one.


12 types of HVAC jobs

Here are 12 types of HVAC jobs that may interest you:

1. Solar technician

National average salary: $49,062 per year

Primary duties: A solar technician assembles solar panels for residential or commercial use and installs solar systems on homes and large buildings. They also fix or maintain current solar systems, replacing parts or cleaning the equipment as necessary. Additionally, the job involves educating customers about proper user-side maintenance and the benefits of having solar electricity powering their home or office.

2. Wind turbine technician

National average salary: $55,772 per year

Primary duties: A wind turbine technician installs and inspects wind turbines, which are machines that create electricity by using wind energy. They also maintain and repair these systems to ensure appropriate and efficient operation. Additional duties include testing the equipment to identify issues, replacing broken or malfunctioning parts and gathering data for the purpose of analysis.

3. Sales associate

National average salary: $56,251 per year

Primary duties: A sales associate is responsible for speaking to customers about their needs and finding viable solutions to any issues they have. Associates contact customers via phone or email to inform them of specials and employ sales techniques to get potential customers to sign up for a product or service. In the HVAC industry, they interact with consumers interested in heating, ventilation or air-conditioning products or services, along with existing customers to help maintain equipment.

Read more: Learn About Being a Sales Associate

4. Air-conditioning technician

National average salary: $61,888 per year

Primary duties: An air-conditioning technician, or HVAC technician, repairs, maintains and installs air-conditioning units, along with ancillary equipment for ventilation and heating. The job involves troubleshooting HVAC units to uncover malfunctions and other problems. They then devise and apply solutions to ensure the proper functioning of the equipment.

5. Pipefitter

National average salary: $62,149 per year

Primary duties: A pipefitter is responsible for building piping for use in HVAC systems, including those for heating, cooling and hot water. They gather the materials required for the job, cut the pipes and install them together. Pipefitters also maintain pipes to ensure optimal functioning and perform rigging, grinding, bending and threading on pipes, depending on the needs of the equipment for which they're building the piping system.

6. Air-conditioning engineer

National average salary: $62,194 per year

Primary duties: An air-conditioning engineer is responsible for designing and creating the systems that heat and cool homes, buildings and other such structures. These systems address common issues like humidity and air purification. The engineer may develop climate control options and produce ways to circulate air so that the inhabitants of the space remain comfortable. They may also survey the buildings for which they're creating systems so as to establish what equipment may be necessary.

Read more: Learn About Being an Air-Conditioning Engineer

7. Fabricator

National average salary: $63,244 per year

Primary duties: A fabricator designs and produces products that meet clients' specifications. They use different tools and machines to join parts, repair faulty equipment and source the materials they're using. They also meet with professionals or clients to understand the scope of the project and receive technical drawings that guide them in their work.

8. Service manager

National average salary: $64,062 per year

Primary duties: A service manager oversees the work of their team to ensure the highest-quality service to their customers. They not only identify areas of improvement but also provide positive feedback to their team upon meeting goals or receiving customer accolades. They may also train new technicians or sales staff, receive service requests and build schedules that accommodate requests based on technicians' availabilities and skill sets.

Read more: Learn About Being a Service Manager

9. Refrigeration technician

National average salary: $66,470 per year

Primary duties: A refrigeration technician is responsible for installing and repairing refrigeration systems. They commonly work in both residences and businesses. They may also answer service calls, respond to refrigeration emergencies, perform regular maintenance on the system and insert climate-control devices that monitor the temperature of the equipment.

10. HVAC installer

National average salary: $68,989 per year

Primary duties: An HVAC installer is responsible for installing new HVAC units. They commonly work in both homes and commercial buildings. They help their customers understand how to use their new systems and educate them about ways to extend the life of their unit.

11. Estimator

National average salary: $69,852 per year

Primary duties: An estimator is responsible for meeting with customers to understand the scope of a project and providing real-cost estimates. This allows customers to decide whether the is within their budget. Additional duties include drafting proposals, sourcing materials, educating customers about options and prices, communicating with clients to ensure they understand the scope of the project and keeping them up-to-date on installation schedules.

Read more: Learn About Being an Estimator

12. Systems engineer

National average salary: $103,550 per year

Primary duties: A systems engineer installs and manages all systems for heating and cooling. They develop the system and make sure it remains sound. They may also train technicians, test the system, write instruction manuals and consider all the components of a system when completing their design.

Read more: Learn About Being a Systems Engineer

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