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

Your average HVAC helper has less experience when compared to fully certified HVAC technicians, but they are still an important part of the team at an HVAC company.

What Tasks Do HVAC Helpers Complete?

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

  • Carrying and loading equipment and materials
  • Cleaning and preparing job sites
  • Supporting the installation, maintenance and repair of heating and cooling systems

They may also be responsible for performing basic tests and checks on HVAC systems to ensure normal operation.

What Do I Need to Become an HVAC Helper?

To start as an HVAC helper, the first step should be finishing a job training program or an apprenticeship. Completing either may take several months to a year, and should 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.

Once the training or apprenticeship program is complete, 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.

What Is an HVAC Helper's Salary?

An HVAC helper's salary will be dependent on how much experience they have, the region where they work and which company they end up working for.

As reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for HVAC helpers hovers around $37,000, although some HVAC helpers may earn more or less than this amount. With experience and more training programs, HVAC helpers may be able to advance to become truly professional HVAC technicians, which typically earn higher salaries.

Overall, 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. After training and education programs are complete, an HVAC helper can become a valuable and well-paid member of the HVAC industry.