Are you wondering how to get an HVAC license in Texas? The HVAC industry is booming in Texas, and job opportunities are plentiful. Technicians can earn anywhere between $35,447 and $53,076 a year, depending on their experience and what certification they have. In this article, you’ll learn everything you need to know about the HVAC certification process, including education requirements, exam information, and the types of HVAC licenses.
Who Needs an HVAC License?
HVAC technicians install, maintain, and repair air conditioners, heating equipment, ventilation units, and more. Their specific tasks include:
- Reading blueprints and equipment specifications
- Drilling holes into building structures
- Testing HVAC systems for inefficiencies
- Troubleshooting common problems
- Connecting HVAC systems to fuel sources
- Testing system joints for leakages
Any HVAC contractors who want to service systems without the direct supervision of a licensed contractor must hold a Texas HVAC license.
HVAC License Types in Texas
There are three main HVAC license types in Texas. These levels build upon each other, and technicians learn more complex skills as they earn higher certifications. These are the three main certifications available for HVAC professionals.
Texas Registered Technician
This is the entry-level HVAC technician certification. You can earn this qualification to begin an apprenticeship or other training program. No experience or education is required to get this permit. The only requirements for the Texas Registered Technician certification include:
- Be at least 18 years of age
- Complete and submit an application form
- Pay a $20 fee
Texas Certified Technician
The second step to getting a full HVAC certification is to obtain a Texas Certified Technician permit. The requirements for this permit include:
- Be at least 18 years of age
- Pay a $50 fee
- Have at least two years of experience as a Texas Registered Technician
- Take and pass an HVAC license test
- Complete a course approved by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation
Texas HVAC Contractor License
The previous certifications require all work to be done under the watchful eye of a certified contractor. The Texas HVAC Contractor License allows you to work by yourself or set up your own company. You don’t have to start with the Texas Registered Technician permit, but it is a good idea if you do not have any relevant HVAC skills.
There are several endorsements you can obtain with your HVAC license in Texas. The available endorsements include:
- Environmental air conditioning
- Commercial refrigeration
- Process cooling or heating
You must select your license type and the endorsement you wish to obtain on your application. The combination you choose impacts the insurance you need, the test you take, and the jobs you are qualified to complete.
On your HVAC Contractor License application, you must also determine if you want a Class A or Class B license. Class A license holders can service all types and sizes of equipment. Class B holders can only take on jobs if the units do not exceed a maximum weight capacity.
Texas HVAC License Requirements
You can apply for an HVAC contractor license after obtaining a Texas Registered Technician and a Texas Certified Technician permit. You might also be able to bypass the first two levels if you have enough experience. To apply for the full license, the Texas HVAC license requirements include:
- Be at least 18 years of age
- Pay $115 fee
- Take and pass the HVAC Contractor Exam
- Possess liability insurance
- Choose the appropriate license class
- Choose the best endorsements for your desired specialization
You may want to contact the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation if you have questions regarding your eligibility.
Everyone who holds the Texas General Contractor License must carry liability insurance. You must obtain a Certificate of Insurance after you pass the licensing exam. You need to maintain commercial general liability insurance at all times your license is active. You must have at least $300,000 worth of bodily injury insurance for Class A License holders. Class B License holders need $100,000 of physical injury insurance.
Texas HVAC Licensing and Registration Fees
To get a new license, present a completed application and send it along with the fee of $115 to the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation. Licenses are useable for one year from the date of issuance.
Texas HVAC License Education Requirements and Exam
You must meet specific experience requirements to get a new license. You must meet one of the following conditions:
- Have at least 48 months of HVAC experience under the direct supervision of a certified contractor within the past 72 months.
- Have at least 36 months of practical experience in the past 48 months and have held a lower-level certification for at least a year.
- A person who supervised your experience must complete an Experience Verification Form on your behalf. You should submit the completed form with your application. You cannot fill out this form by yourself.
There are certain circumstances when you may qualify for an exception to these experience requirements. The rules for an exception include:
- You have a qualifying degree or diploma in an HVAC-related subject.
- You have a degree in engineering.
- You completed HVAC training in Texas in the military.
- You are currently employed by an industrial operation and perform HVAC work as part of your duties.
Please refer to the exemptions page on the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation’s website for more information.
HVAC License Exam Details
Once you complete the steps detailed above, you will receive a notification from the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation that you are eligible to take the exam. You will also be prompted to submit your application.
The first step is to register with PSI, input your personal information, pay the exam fee, and schedule your test. The exam for Class A certifications is 120 questions, while the Class B test is 100 questions. You must get a score of at least 70% to pass. If you fail, you can retake it within one or two days.
HVAC Training Schools in Texas
There are many formal schools that specialize in HVAC training in Texas. The following colleges have courses that prepare you to take the exam:
- Lincoln College of Technology, Grand Prairie, TX, 972-660-5701
- Laredo College, Laredo, TX, 956-722-0521
- Vernon College, Vernon, TX, 940-552-6291
Great HVAC training can be found both in-person and online. Use our tool below to find additional programs near you.
Texas License Application
Before taking the exam, you must submit an application to the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation. The application must be filled out correctly to be approved. You need to provide personal information, including your name, date of birth, and address. You also need to provide your business information if you formed a company. Your filing fee must also accompany the application.
You need to submit a background check as part of the application process. If you have been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor or plead guilty to any in-state or out-of-state offense, you need to provide information to the board. This information must be detailed in the Criminal History Questionnaire. You should submit this form along with your application materials.
The Department will review your background and determine your result on a case-by-case basis. You can have your license denied based on the nature of your offense and when the conviction occurred. The review of your criminal history can take up to six weeks. You can request that the Department review your criminal record before submitting your application materials. Please refer to the official guidelines for more information for license applicants with criminal convictions.
Registration and Permitting Requirements
You should check with your local city board to see if you need a business license or permit to conduct business legally. Many different cities and countries have different regulations for the electrical profession.
Licenses are valid for one year from the date of issue. You should begin the renewal process at least 60 days before it expires. You must submit a new Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor License Application with the renewal fee of $65. You should complete 8 hours of continuing education courses each year for your license to remain active. One hour of your education must cover Texas law.
HVAC Registered Contractor Requirements in Texas
All HVAC technicians who get the Texas HVAC Contractor License are considered contractors under Texas law. No new permits or licenses are required to complete contracting work legally.
EPA Certification in Texas
Before getting a job, all HVAC technicians in Texas must have an EPA Section 6008 certification. There are four categories available:
- Type 1 (small units)
- Type 2 (high-pressure units)
- Type 3 (low-pressure units)
- Type 4 (universal)
You must take an EPA-approved preparation course and pass the certification exam to get certified. EPA certifications do not expire. Continuing education courses are not required.
HVAC License Texas FAQ
Here are some questions to some frequently asked questions:
How Long Is My Texas HVAC License Valid?
All licenses are valid for 12 months from the date of issue. You need to begin the renewal process at least 60 days before the expiration date.
Can I Use My Texas HVAC License in the Other States?
Some states have reciprocity agreements with the state of Texas, allowing you to use a permit issued in another state. Check with your local board to see if your state license is accepted in Texas.
Who Can I Contact If I Have Questions?
If you have questions regarding the application or license process, you can contact the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation. You can contact the state office by calling 800-803-9202.
Do you want to know how to get an HVAC license in Texas? The process involves satisfying the prerequisite education requirements, submitting an application, and passing the examination.
For More License and Career Guides
To find out how to become an HVAC-R technician in another state, start here.
For information on other trades in Texas, click on a link below to learn more about the licensing requirements: