In Connecticut, the journey to becoming an HVAC contractor generally begins with trade school instruction and an apprenticeship. You can take a journeyperson HVAC license exam after completing a two-, three- or four-year course and apprenticeship. Journeypersons must work for two years to qualify for a contractor license. This guide can show you how to get an HVAC license in Connecticut.
Who Needs an HVAC License?
If you want to work with heating systems, cooling, and air-conditioning systems, refrigeration systems, ductwork, or hearth products, you need to have the appropriate HVAC license:
- Air conditioners, central air, and ductless cooling systems
- Fireplaces and chimneys
- Gas heating systems
- Ductwork and hoods
- Freezers and refrigeration appliances
- Commercial refrigeration systems and equipment
In Connecticut, licensed contractors can perform all types of work in their respective areas of focus. This includes designing, installing, maintaining, repairing, and replacing systems.
HVAC License Types in Connecticut
There are over 20 different HVAC licenses in Connecticut. The license you need to acquire depends on the area of HVAC work you wish to perform: heating, cooling, hearth products, fuel gas, or sheet metal work. The two main license types are journeyperson HVAC licenses and contractor licenses. These HVAC contractor licenses are divided into numerous categories:
- B-1 Limited Gas and Oil Burner Contractor: The contractor is allowed to install, maintain and repair gas or oil burners for domestic and light commercial applications.
- B-3 Limited Gas and Oil Burner Contractor: A B-3 license allows qualified contractors to work with any size of gas or oil burners. These include all residential and commercial gas and oil systems.
- D-1 Limited Warm Air, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration Contractor: The D-1 contractor license covers installing, servicing, repairing, and replacing many HVAC systems, such as air conditioning, refrigeration, and warm air units, but not oil burners. Contractors can install and perform work on HVAC conduits and pipes and interior/exterior pumps.
- D-3 Limited Cooling Contractor License: The contractor can install, replace, change, service or repair all refrigeration systems, both for home and commercial applications. This license includes refrigeration systems for special processes and food storage.
- G-1 Limited Heating, Piping, and Cooling Contractor: The G-1 license applies to gas appliances, piping systems, and accessories used with LP natural gas or gas containers.
- S-1 Unlimited Heating, Piping, and Cooling Contractor: As the name suggests, the S-1 license allows HVAC contractors to perform any type of heating, cooling, and piping work. There is no limit to the scope of the work for residential or commercial applications, including HVAC jobs for manufacturers, warehouses, and retail stores.
- S-3 Limited Heating, Piping, and Cooling Contractor: The contractor can work with oil burners, piping, pumps, devices, and accessories for boilers, heating systems, and steam conveyance equipment. This license excludes all sheet metal work, refrigeration systems, and air conditioning systems.
- S-5 Limited Heating, Hot Water, and Steam Contractor: With this license, contractors are allowed to work with hot water and steam heating systems, but with a few restrictions. The system can only have a maximum load of 500,000 BTUs and 15 pounds of steam pressure. The work can only be performed on buildings from one to three stories high.
- S-7 Limited Contractor: The S-7 covers the same work scope and limitations as the S-5 license, but additionally lets contractors install and service limited oil burners, gas burners, and gas piping.
- S-9 Limited Heating Cooling Contractor: The contractor can perform the same work covered by the S-5 and S-7 licenses, as well as installing, servicing, and repairing cooling systems (max 35 tons) and LP gas systems with natural pas piping or gas containers.
- SM-1 Limited Sheet Metal Contractor: The contractor can install, build, repair, change or replace ductwork systems of any kind, size, or building scope.
- SM-3 Limited Sheet Metal Residential/Light Commercial Contractor: This license permits contractors to work with ductwork exclusively in residential and light commercial buildings that only have one air handling unit (max 35 tons) or blowers limited to 14,000 cubic feet per minute.
- SM-5 Limited Sheet Metal Contractor Hood Systems: With an SM-5 license, contractors can build, install, change or repair hood ductwork systems, such as those used in restaurants.
- HPG-1 Contractor: This license covers installing, repairing, and maintaining natural gas or propane fireplaces, log sets, stoves, and fireplace inserts, including venting and piping.
All of these licenses also have a journeyperson equivalent, such as the B-2 and B-4 Limited Gas and Oil Burner Journeyperson license. A professional with a journeyperson license is permitted to carry out the same activities as a contractor, but only while employed by a fully licensed contractor in the same field. The S-2 Unlimited Heating, Piping, and Cooling Journeyperson license are one of the most wide-ranging for journeyperson HVAC workers in Connecticut, allowing them to perform the same activities as S-1 Unlimited contractors while employed by a licensed contractor.
Connecticut HVAC License Requirements
To obtain a journeyperson license in Connecticut, it’s generally necessary to complete an accredited apprenticeship program. As an alternative, you can qualify if you have equivalent training and real-world experience. Before being licensed, you must pass the journeyperson license examination.
To become an HVAC contractor, you must have two years of experience as a licensed journeyperson in Connecticut. Then, you need to take a contractor license examination and gain a passing score on both portions.
All businesses in Connecticut that have at least one employee are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance. HVAC companies are no exception. Workers’ comp covers accidents or injuries that happen on the job, including burns and impacts from falling objects.
While not legally required in Connecticut, liability insurance is recommended for HVAC contractors. This type of insurance covers property damage and injuries that happen on a worksite. When you carry adequate liability insurance, it puts customers at ease. Many potential clients only choose contractors that are fully licensed and insured.
Use the tool below to request a free commercial insurance quote from our partners.
Connecticut HVAC Licensing and Registration Fees
At the time of this writing, costs associated with obtaining an HVAC license in Connecticut depend on whether you’re applying for a journeyperson or contractor license:
- Application fee for journeyperson: $90.00
- Application fee for a contractor: $150.00
- Exam registration fee: $65 per portion (a total of $65 for journeyperson license and $130 for contractor license)
- The license fee for a journeyperson: $120
- The license fee for a contractor: $150
- Annual license renewal fee: $120 for journeypersons and $150 for contractors.
HVAC license Connecticut applications are conducted by PSI Licensure. The application fee and exam registration fees are payable to PSI by credit card, check money order or cashier’s check. Don’t mail cash.
Once you pass the test, you need to mail the licensing fee and passing score reports from PSI to the Department of Consumer Protection at the following address:
Connecticut Department of Consumer Protection
Occupational and Professional Licensing
450 Columbus Boulevard, Suite 801
Hartford, CT 06103
Connecticut HVAC License Education Requirements and Exam
There are a variety of in-person and online training programs that can prepare people who are interested in a career in HVAC. Apprenticeship programs are available in Connecticut that covers the requirements for on-the-job training hours. Apprentices can perform work with HVAC systems they’ve been trained for, but they must be supervised by someone with a journeyperson HVAC license at all times.
Depending on the license you’re pursuing, OJT can range from 2,000 hours to 8,000 hours. These are two- to four-year courses that can allow you to take the journeyperson license exam upon successful completion.
HVAC License Exam Details
Connecticut requires passing an HVAC licensing exam to obtain a journeyperson or contractor license. If you’re applying for a journeyperson license or want to work as a registered HVAC technician, you only need to take the trade portion of the license exam. Obtaining an HVAC contractor license requires passing a business portion as well as the trade portion of the exam.
There are several PSI examination centers for occupational licensing in Connecticut and Massachusetts:
500 BIC Drive
Milford, CT 06461
West Hartford, CT
1245 Farmington Ave, Suite 203
West Hartford, CT 06107
48 Sword St, Unit 204
Auburn, MA 01501
56 Roland St., Suite 305
Charlestown, MA 02129
Fall River, MA
218 South Main St, Suite 105
Fall River, MA 02721
1111 Elm Street, Suite 32A
West Springfield, MA 01089
If you use the PSI website to choose your preferred site for the testing exam, you can see a list of available dates. Select a date to schedule your appointment.
When you show up at the exam site, you have to show two forms of valid identification. State IDs, driver’s licenses, passports, or military IDs are all acceptable. The examination is administered by computer at the testing site. The time allowed and several questions vary by specific license type, but a score of 70% is always required to pass.
HVAC Training Schools in Connecticut
The Connecticut Technical Education and Career System offer in-depth education related to heating, cooling, and refrigeration systems, ductwork, energy efficiency, and other information needed for a career in HVAC-R. System design, installation, repair, maintenance, and replacement are covered. The program provides 720 hours of classroom instruction and up to 1,500 hours toward apprenticeship requirements following graduation.
Many technical colleges in Connecticut offer the CTECS HVAC program:
- Bristol T.E.C. – Bristol, CT (860) 584-8433
- Cheney Tech – Manchester, CT (860) 649-5396
- Goodwin Tech – New Britain, CT (860) 827-7736
- Wilcox Tech – Meriden, CT (203) 238-6260
- Windham Tech – Willimantic, CT (860) 456-3879
- Abbott Tech – Danbury, CT (203) 797-4460
- Norwich Tech – Norwich, CT (860) 889-8453
- O’Brien Tech – Ansonia, CT (203) 732-1800
- Platt Tech – Milford, CT (203) 783-5300
- Vinal Tech – Middletown, CT (860) 344-7100
Great HVAC training can be found both in-person and online. Use our tool below to find additional programs near you.
Connecticut License Application
Before taking the license exam, it’s necessary to fill out an application, mail it to PSI and pay an application fee. Mail the completed Occupational Trade License Application and application fee to the following address:
PSI licensure: certification
3210 East Tropicana Ave.
Las Vegas, NV 89121
What documents do you need to provide along with your application?
- Journeyperson licenses: Original copy of your Letter of Apprenticeship Completion Certification
- Contractor licenses: Color copy of your current journeyperson or technician license; must show two years of experience as a licensed HVAC journeyperson
- Military service members: Your original Recommendation for Review letter, provided by the Connecticut Department of Labor
If you haven’t completed an official apprenticeship, you must provide proof of your equivalent experience and training. Include notarized statements from employers in HVAC fields that detail your duties and length of employment. You should also include documents showing your educational training related to HVAC, such as trade school diplomas.
It can take up to 10 days for application processing. If you qualify to take the exam, you will receive detailed instructions for scheduling. You can also register online at PSI’s website (once your application has been processed) or call (855) 746-8171.
Registration and Permitting Requirements
In addition to HVAC license requirements, all HVAC professionals working with ozone-damaging refrigerants must obtain EPA Section 608 Certification. Depending on the size of the systems you work with, you need Type I, Type II, Type II, or Universal certification. There are EPA-approved testing centers throughout the U.S., including some remote programs. For HVAC training in Connecticut, courses cover the information needed to pass the EPA Section 608 test.
HVAC Registered Contractor Requirements in Connecticut
Connecticut doesn’t require HVAC professionals to hold a general contractor license. However, if your business involves residential improvement tasks, you must register as a home improvement contractor with the DCP. Home improvement includes any type of permanent changes to residential properties, including floors, walls, ceilings, insulation, and waterproofing tasks, among other work.
Knowing how to get an HVAC license in Connecticut is the first step to a great career in HVAC-R systems. This field is constantly growing in Connecticut, offering the potential for you to make an average of $30/hr. ($65,000/yr) or more
HVAC License Connecticut FAQ
How Long Is My Connecticut HVAC License Valid?
Your Connecticut HVAC license is valid for one year and must be renewed annually.
Can I Use My Connecticut HVAC License in The Other States?
Connecticut does not have reciprocity agreements with other states.
Who Can I Contact If I Have Questions?
If you require further information about how to get an HVAC license in Connecticut, please refer to the heating and cooling licensing section of Connecticut’s Official State Website.