How Much Does an HVAC Tech Make in 2023?

A common question among job seekers and employers in the trades is, “how much does an HVAC tech make?” Compensation information is an important topic when staffing up and searching for work.

In this article we’ll cover:

  • A broad view of the current state of HVAC tech compensation in the U.S.
  • Showing the compensation spread across regions and experience.
  • Revealing the states hiring the most HVAC techs.
  • A glimpse at the direction of the industry over the next 5-10 years.

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The Growing Need for HVAC Techs

Interest in the trades among the younger generations is at an all time low. In fact, the hard truth of the matter is that for every one person entering the trades, five are retiring.

This means there’s a severe need for workers, which makes this a job-seekers market. Therefore, this is perhaps the best time to consider a job as an HVAC tech. The industry is constantly growing as well. In fact 46,000 new HVAC jobs will be created by 2028.

Career Explorer states, “There are currently an estimated 332,900 HVAC technicians in the United States. The HVAC technician job market is expected to grow by 14.7% between 2016 and 2026.”

This also means the national average wage for this industry is well above many others.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics cites, “The median annual wage for heating, air conditioning, and refrigeration mechanics and installers was $48,630 in May 2021.” This is well above the national average of $41,950 across all occupations.


HVAC Tech Salary Overview

We’ve cited the sources, and crunched the numbers. We’ve found the aggregate average of the nationwide salary expectations across three categories of experience levels.

Therefore, if you’re new to the industry or are a seasoned veteran, or just looking to staff up your team, and you’re still wondering “how much does an HVAC tech make?” This table is for you:

Indeed Career Explorer ZipRecruiter Glassdoor Aggregate Average
Low/No Experience N/A $34,300/year $40,500/year N/A $37,400/year
Median $48,593/year $48,600/year $52,018/year $55,578/year $51,197/year
Experienced $79,601/year $78,200/year $60,500/year N/A $72,767/year


There are ways to gain experience for those new to the field. Certification courses can take as little as six months to complete.

In turn, apprenticing is always an option (and is often required!) for those that learn best on the job.

Salary Variances Within the U.S.

As always, answering the question “How much does an HVAC tech make?” requires further regional clarification since there are variances in salaries depending where you’re located.

The top three highest paying cities are Houston, TX, Phoenix, AZ, and Tampa, FL according to Indeed.

The top three states to find employment as an HVAC tech are Florida, California and Texas, according to Career Explorer.

According to Indeed, the deviation from the national average is most prominent in the following states:

State % Variance from Average
Alaska +22%
Connecticut +25%
Delaware +26%
California +17%
Alabama -16%
Missouri -16%
Oklahoma -15%
Hawaii -10%


Also, for comparison sake, here are a few statistics citing the relative education level of HVAC techs across the nation:

  • Career Explorer states 77% of HVAC techs hold a certificate or associate’s degree. Most commonly, that degree is in Refrigeration, Air Conditioning, Heating and Gas Technology.
  • A total of 13% of all HVAC techs began their careers in this industry with a high school diploma. 7% hold a bachelor’s degree.
  • One major factor affecting the earning potential of an HVAC tech is achieving licenses. The top license an HVAC tech can earn to grow their salary is a Professional Engineer License. Indeed states this one license can increase your salary 59.97%.


Common Benefits for HVAC Techs

Salary is only one part of a complete benefits package offered by full-time employment.

In turn, many HVAC techs are offered perks when accepting a position in the HVAC industry.

We’ve rounded up a list provided by Indeed:

  • Fuel discount
  • Paid time off
  • 401(k) matching
  • Disability insurance
  • Dental insurance
  • Life insurance
  • Vision insurance
  • Flexible schedule
  • Health insurance
  • Paid sick time
  • Free flu shots

Also, there are ample opportunities to earn overtime as an HVAC tech, with Indeed averaging $6,750 additional earnings per year. If you’re an experienced technician, you could make well over $80,000/year with overtime pay!

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Now You Know the Answer to: “How Much Does an HVAC Tech Make?”

The outlook for becoming an HVAC tech is strong in the coming years. Remember, for every one person entering the trades these days, five are retiring.

Use what you’ve discovered in this article to:

  • Develop an understanding of the competitive wages HVAC techs earn in the U.S.
  • Build a 5-year strategy to attract top talent to your HVAC business
  • Tune your benefits package to match the most commonly offered perks
  • Include the best HVAC field service software to streamline your company’s operations

The jobs are plentiful, and this overview of HVAC tech compensation has now answered the question, “How much do HVAC techs make?”

RELATED: 5 Ideas for Building the Best HVAC Team in the Industry

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