What to Expect When Working in HVAC
In an HVAC career, one thing is certain: no two days will be exactly the same. Almost daily you’ll have new clients, new problems to solve, and a new location to work in.
As an HVAC student or someone considering the career, you’ve probably wondered: what does a normal day in the life of an HVAC technician look like? Individual days will vary, but you can generally expect a few consistent daily occurrences in your new job.
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Planning a Full Day’s Work
Most HVAC techs start their day by either receiving a list of scheduled jobs from their employer or (if self-employed) speaking directly to clients about work. If you make HVAC your career, you’ll rarely have to worry about filling your workday. In Houston, someone will inevitably need repairs on their AC unit. Once you have a full schedule of clients, you’re ready to head out and start working.
Small Jobs vs. Big Projects
For most HVAC professionals, a typical workday consists of several smaller projects to perform maintenance work, repair a malfunctioning air conditioner, or install a new unit. In a suburban area, most of your work will be visiting homes or occasionally small businesses. These jobs generally won’t take long, allowing you to complete several of them in a single day.
Occasionally, you’ll get a bigger installation or repair job that could take days. Maybe a homeowner’s problem is extensive or a large building needs an entirely new system. Obviously, there’s little chance you’ll finish these jobs in one day. You may spend several days returning to the same building and working on the same job.
Finding and Solving the Problem
More often than not, a client won’t know what the problem is with their heating and air conditioning system when they hire you for repairs. Most homeowners won’t provide more information than “It stopped working yesterday.” This is where your problem-solving skills can help immensely. If you know the internal workings of an AC system like the back of your hand, you can easily find anything out of place or broken. Your client will be pleased with the speed of your work, and you’ll be able to fix the problem without pressing the client for more details that they may not know.
Pro Tip: Happy clients can easily become repeat clients! After a service call, leave your contact information and encourage them to call you again if their AC system needs further work.
Overtime or Other Duties
The bad news about an HVAC job is that it can easily run late if complications arise. The good news is, those extra work hours count as overtime and can earn you a decent amount of extra pay for your hard work! Staying late can also shorten the overall time required for a job, meaning you have to spend less time in the same place.
Self-employed HVAC professionals also have to worry about administrative work or planning for the next day once they’ve completed their other work. With time, you should learn to plan accordingly for this extra time and wrap up your day at a reasonable hour.
Ready to Start Your Career in HVAC?
If you love variety in your workdays and relish a challenge, working in the HVAC industry could be the perfect job for you. You’ll never be low on repair jobs or new learning opportunities to improve your skills.
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