HVAC Contractor (Residential)

HVAC contractors contract with clients to install, service or repair heating and air conditioning systems in residences and commercial establishments. In most states, only contractors require licenses, not those who work for them. In some states, licensing requirements differ based on the setting. Those with a residential license may work only on residential properties, while those with a commercial license may work on commercial properties. Other states require the same license regardless of the setting, and this report records that license in both settings. Many states have contract minimums before the contractor’s license applies. See Appendix B for details.
License required by 35 states
8th most burdensome licensing requirements
24th most widely and onerously licensed occupation

Thirty-five states license HVAC contractors working on residential properties. On average, states require almost three years (1,055 days) of education and experience, $397 in fees, and about two exams. All in all, 30 states require at least one exam (Rhode Island requires four). These requirements rank as the eighth most burdensome.

Burden Rank State States Licensed Fees Estimated Calendar Days Lost Education Experience Exams Minimum Grade Minimum Age
1 Rhode Island 35 $660.00 2,920 - 8 years 4 0 18
2 Iowa 35 $890.00 2,190 - 6 years 2 12 18
3 Idaho 35 $395.00 2,190 - 6 years 2 0 18
4 Maryland 35 $405.00 2,190 - 6 years 2 0 0
5 Delaware 35 $109.00 2,190 - 6 years 1 0 0
6 Virginia 35 $720.00 1,826 8 clock hours 5 years 2 0 18
7 New Jersey 35 $331.00 1,825 - 5 years 2 0 18
8 D C 35 $45.00 1,825 - 5 years 1 0 0
9 Nevada 35 $1,078.25 1,460 - 4 years 2 0 18
10 California 35 $579.00 1,460 - 4 years 3 0 18
11 Kentucky 35 $505.83 1,460 - 4 years 3 0 18
12 Connecticut 35 $465.00 1,460 - 4 years 3 0 18
13 Hawaii 35 $615.00 1,460 - 4 years 2 0 18
13 Oklahoma 35 $615.00 1,460 - 4 years 2 0 18
15 Florida 35 $364.00 1,460 - 4 years 2 0 18
16 New Mexico 35 $317.76 1,460 - 4 years 2 0 18
17 Georgia 35 $297.00 1,463 16 clock hours 4 years 1 0 18
18 Texas 35 $195.00 1,460 - 4 years 1 0 18
19 Michigan 35 $400.00 1,095 - 3 years 1 0 0
20 Arizona 35 $956.00 730 - 2 years 2 0 18
21 Utah 35 $549.00 733 20 clock hours 2 years 2 0 0
22 Arkansas 35 $255.00 730 - 2 years 1 0 18
23 North Carolina 35 $260.00 730 - 2 years 2 0 0
24 Alaska 35 $450.00 730 - 2 years 1 0 0
25 South Carolina 35 $280.00 365 - 1 years 2 0 0
26 Mississippi 35 $290.00 67 - 3 jobs, contractors 2 0 0
27 Oregon 35 $410.00 3 16 clock hours - 1 0 18
28 Louisiana 35 $460.00 0 - - 2 0 0
29 Tennessee 35 $360.00 0 - - 2 0 0
30 West Virginia 35 $174.00 0 - - 2 0 0
31 North Dakota 35 $125.00 0 - - 0 0 18
32 Wisconsin 35 $175.00 0 - - 0 0 0
33 Washington 35 $113.40 0 - - 0 0 0
34 Pennsylvania 35 $50.00 0 - - 0 0 0
35 Nebraska 35 $0.00 0 - - 0 0 0