Maine is known for freezing winters and mild summers, so residents of the state have a need for heat to keep their homes at a comfortable temperature. If you are wondering how to get an HVAC license in Maine, you should know that the U.S. Energy Information Administration reports that more than half of Maine residents rely on fuel oil to heat their homes, and as a result, the state does not offer traditional HVAC licenses.
Various jurisdictions have their own licensing regulations, so if you plan to work in the HVAC industry in Maine, you must pass an exam to become a licensed Oil Burner or Fuel Technician in addition to meeting county HVAC requirements for the region you plan to work in.
Who Needs an HVAC License in Maine?
While many other states license HVAC technicians at the state level, Maine does not. Anyone who wants to work in the HVAC industry as an apprentice, journeyman, master, or contractor must hold the state certification of Oil Burner or Fuel Technician. The Office of Professional and Occupational Regulation issues these licenses through the Maine Fuel Board. Additionally, all HVAC contractors must hold an electrical license issued by the Maine Electricians’ Licensing Board to perform the wiring necessary for HVAC installation.
HVAC License Types in Maine
Maine issues licenses for HVAC work in specific categories. The Oil Burner and Fuel Technician licenses are issued at the following levels:
- Apprentice: To become an apprentice, you must complete an application and pay a fee of $21 for a criminal background check. The license fee is $40, and you must renew your certification every two years.
- Journeyman: The license fee for journeymen is $100. To be eligible for the journeyman exam, you must have been a licensed apprentice for at least a year or completed an accredited 320-hour program at an approved Maine community college. At least 150 of those hours must include laboratory work allowing you to work on oil-burning equipment. You may take a six-month program with 75 hours of laboratory work and 160 hours of study if you also work as an apprentice for six months to meet the requirements for the journeyman exam. The fee for the background check is $21 and you must renew your license every two years.
- Master: You must have four years of licensed experience in the HVAC field to apply for a Master Oil Burner or Fuel Technician. At least two of those years must be as a journeyman. Along with your application, you must submit a signed affidavit verifying license hours and a fee of $21 for a criminal background check. The fee for a master’s certification is $200. The license should be renewed every two years.
Oil Burner and Fuel Technician are the two most common license types in Maine, but depending upon the type of HVAC work you provide, you may need additional certifications. The Maine Fuel Board issues specific certifications for working with different types of fuel. Each one must be renewed every two years.
Propane Limited Energy Auditor Technician
The Maine Building Performance Institute offers a certification test and field examination for this license. You must show proof that you passed the exam when you submit your application. The license fee is $50. This certification allows you to work with propane gas.
Oil Limited Energy Auditor Technician
This license is required for anyone who works with gas within the HVAC industry. The license fee is $50, and you must pass the written and field exams given by the Building Performance Institute to be eligible for this certification.
Propane and Natural Gas Helper
You can enter the HVAC field in Maine with this certification. In addition to your application, you must submit a $21 fee for a background check and a $20 license fee. This license allows you to work with natural gas under the supervision of a licensed technician.
Propane and Natural Gas Technician
The license fee for this certification is $100. The fee for the background check is $21. To become a Propane and Natural Gas Technician, you must pass the Large Equipment Connection and Service Technician exam. You need to complete an HVAC program approved by the Maine Fuel Board before you can sit for the technician exam.
Maine HVAC License Requirements
Maine issues Oil Burner, Fuel Technician, and other certifications in lieu of traditional HVAC state licenses. Most of these license types require you to complete an approved HVAC program from a community college or gain work experience through an apprenticeship.
You may enter the field by applying for an apprenticeship or working as an HVAC helper while you gain the certifications you need to hold the equivalent of an HVAC license in Maine.
You are not required by the state of Maine to have insurance as an Oil Burner or Fuel Technicians unless you want to work as an HVAC contractor. Contractors must have unemployment and workers’ compensation insurance. Use the tool below to request a free commercial insurance quote from our partners.
Maine HVAC Licensing and Registration Fees
There are fees associated with each type of HVAC license and exam in Maine. Fees are subject to change at any time, but at the time of this writing, they are:
- Apprentice license: $40
- Apprentice exam: $65
- Journeyman license: $100
- Journeyman exam: $65
- Master license: $200
- Master exam: $90
- Propane or Oil Limited Energy Technician license: $50
- Propane and Natural Gas Helper license: $20
- Propane and Natural Gas Technician license: $100
- Propane and Natural Gas Technician exam: $65
Maine HVAC License Education Requirements and Exam
There are three ways to meet the educational requirements for an HVAC license in Maine. You may complete an HVAC program through a community college such as the Refrigeration, Air Conditioning, and Heating program offered by Eastern Maine Community College.
You may also choose to gain experience in the HVAC industry by completing an apprenticeship. There are numerous programs available both online and in-person to give you the skills you need to become an HVAC technician.
If you prefer to enter the industry immediately without fulfilling educational requirements, obtain your Propane and Natural Gas License from the Maine Fuel Board.
HVAC License Exam Details
Maine requires you to pass an exam for many HVAC certifications. The exams are divided into specific categories relating to the type of HVAC license you are applying for. All of the exams are administered by Prov testing services and range in price from $65 to $90 depending upon which exam you are taking. You may take the exams in any of the following cities:
- Presque Isle
The Candidate Information Bulletin provides you with specific information about each exam. The tests are timed with multiple-choice questions. The exams for the Oil Burner and Solid Fuel Technician licenses are all divided into the following four categories:
- Solid Fuel
- #1 and #2 oils with a flow rate slower than 15 gallons per hour
- #1 and #2 oils with a flow rate faster than 15 gallons per hour
- #4, #5 and #6 oils
The exam for Fuel Technician is closed-book.
HVAC Training Schools in Maine
There are many schools that offer HVAC training in Maine, including:
- Southern Maine Community College, South Portland, Maine, 207-741-5500
- Central Maine Community College, Auburn, Maine, 207-755-5100
- Eastern Maine Community College, Bangor, Maine, 207-974-4600
Great HVAC training can be found both in-person and online. Use our tool below to find additional programs near you.
Maine License Application
You can apply for any Maine HVAC license online. Once approved, you can sit for any required exams to receive your desired certification. For higher certifications, you must submit proof that you have completed the educational or training requirements for the license in addition to the fees for the license, exam, and background check.
If you plan to work as a contractor, you must get workers’ compensation and unemployment insurance. You must also obtain a business license to operate your own HVAC company.
Registration and Permitting Requirements
Any HVAC technician in Maine must also have an electrician’s license issued by the Maine Electricians’ Licensing Board or work under the license of someone else. If you want to operate your own company, you must also hold a business license.
You must renew your Maine HVAC license every two years for it to stay valid. The renewal fee is the same as the initial license fee and varies depending on which certification you are renewing.
HVAC Registered Contractor Requirements in Maine
An HVAC licensee in Maine does not need a general contractor license to perform HVAC work. You will. however, need to hold an electrician’s license. A business license is only necessary if you plan to open an HVAC company.
EPA Certification in Maine
You must hold an EPA certificate if you plan to work with any type of refrigerant. A Type I certification allows you to work with appliances that use less than five pounds of refrigerant. Type II certifications qualify you to work on appliances that use more than five pounds of refrigerant, and Universal certifications permit you to work on any appliance that uses refrigerant.
To receive your EPA certificate, you must pass a core exam that covers the following topics:
- Substitute refrigerant and oils
- Ozone depletion
- Section 608 regulations
- Clean Air Act and the Montreal Protocol
- Recovery techniques
HVAC License Maine FAQ
How Long Is My Maine HVAC License Valid?
Each HVAC certification in Maine is valid for two years. You can renew your license online for the same fee you paid initially to receive it.
Can I Use My Maine HVAC License in the Other States?
A Maine HVAC license is not valid in other states because Maine issues separate certifications for various types of HVAC work.
Who Can I Contact If I Have Questions?
Contact the Maine Fuel Board for additional questions about how to obtain an HVAC license in Maine.
How Do Maine HVAC Licensing Regulations Vary Among Jurisdictions?
Having an Oil Burner, Fuel Technician, or Propane and Natural Gas license authorize you to perform HVAC work in many counties in Maine. Some cities such as Portland and Bangor have additional certification requirements for HVAC technicians. Look up the HVAC regulations of the municipality you want to work in to ensure you meet the licensing requirements.
The HVAC industry in Maine is projected to grow over the next few years, so an HVAC technician may be a promising career choice. Unlike other states that require HVAC licenses to work in the industry, Maine requires you to hold a license as an Oil Burner or Fuel technician.
If you want to know how to get an HVAC license in Maine, you need to understand that these alternative certifications provide you with the same ability to service heating, ventilation, and air conditioning units.