If you’re looking to advance your HVAC career, it’s a good idea to think about becoming HVAC certified in Texas. Texas has exceptionally high employment rates for HVAC professionals (some of the highest in the US!), and the field is expected to keep growing over the next few years.
While you can perform some work with just an HVAC certificate, an HVAC license shows that you have additional training and expert knowledge in the HVAC field, making you stand out from the crowd when you’re looking to get hired.
So what is an HVAC license, and how do you get one? In this blog, we’ll discuss:
- The 2 types of HVAC licenses in Texas
- How to get an HVAC license
- What to expect on the licensing exam
Ready to jumpstart your HVAC career? Join the Jon Wayne Academy for Technical Excellence to get your HVAC certificate in as little as 6 months!
The 2 types of HVAC licenses in Texas
Texas offers 2 types of HVAC licenses, depending on what type of equipment you want to be licensed to work on.
With a Texas Air Conditioning Class A (TACLA) license, you’ll have no restrictions on the type of equipment you can service. HVAC professionals with this license type generally make more money than those with TACLB licenses (explained below).
With a Texas Air Conditioning Class B (TACLB) license, you can only work on cooling systems up to 25 tons and heating systems up to 1.5 million BTUs/hour.
All Texas HVAC licenses include an EPA refrigeration certification, meaning that if you have a Texas HVAC license, you are also licensed to work on any equipment containing refrigerants. Additionally, you can choose to pursue a North American Technician Excellence (NATE) certification, which shows customers and potential employers that you are an extremely experienced and knowledgeable HVAC professional.
If you’re looking to tack on a specialized certification to your HVAC license, programs are available through the Jon Wayne Academy of Technical Excellence—contact us to learn more!
How to get an HVAC license
An HVAC license (either TACLA or TACLB) is required to work as an HVAC contractor in the state of Texas. To get your HVAC license, you’ll need to demonstrate that you have the necessary experience, submit an application for an HVAC license, and pass the licensing exam.
1. Getting HVAC experience
Before you can obtain your HVAC license, you’ll need some serious experience working in the field of HVAC. The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation requires that you either:
- Have 4 years of experience working with an expert (such as an HVAC contractor) that has been licensed within the past 6 years
- Have an HVAC technician certificate that you earned in the last 12 months and also have 3 years of experience working with an expert
*In some cases, military experience, engineering licenses, or apprenticeship programs can qualify you for a full or partial exemption of these experience requirements.
An HVAC technician certificate can be obtained by taking an HVAC certification training program, which we offer in-house—the Jon Wayne Academy for Technical Excellence. With one-on-one training with instructors, a 50/50 mix of class time and on-site training, and job placement assistance after you graduate, you’ll have both an HVAC technician certificate and the expert experience you need to take your licensing exam in no time.
2. Submitting your HVAC licensing application
Once you’ve built up the necessary experience to become HVAC licensed, it’s time to apply for your license. This involves completing the license application, paying a $115 fee, and registering for the exam. You will also need to verify your experience, that you are 18 years or older, and whether you intend to pursue a TACLA or TACLB license.
3. Passing the licensing exam
You’ve gotten the necessary experience and paid the fee—now it’s time to take the exam! We’ll discuss everything you need to know to pass the licensing exam in the section below.
What to expect on the licensing exam
Once you’re approved to take the HVAC licensing exam, you have up to a year to pass and obtain your HVAC license. During this time frame, you can take the licensing test as many times as you need to get a passing grade (70%); however, each time you retake the test you will have to pay an additional fee.
If you’re trying to get a TACLA license, your licensing exam will take 4 hours and consist of 120 questions.
If you’re trying to get a TACLB license, the exam will take 3 hours and will consist of 100 questions.
While it’s hard to predict exactly what topics will be covered on the licensing exam, some common themes are:
- Boiler systems
- HVAC systems
- Heating and cooling
- Pressure relief
- Refrigeration systems
Once you pass the test, your HVAC license will be valid for 1 year. In order to renew it each year, you’ll need to obtain 8 hours of continuing education credit.
You’re just a few steps from a fulfilling HVAC career.
We’re always on the lookout for hardworking, customer-focused professionals ready to launch their HVAC careers. If you’re prepared to take the next step in HVAC training, apply to the Jon Wayne Academy for Technical Excellence today!