Reply
Go Back   TexasBowhunter.com Community Discussion Forums > Topics > Around the Campfire
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 09-05-2017, 11:46 PM   #1
robbyreneeward
Ten Point
 
robbyreneeward's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Clarksville, TX
Hunt In: Johntown (Bogata), Red River County
Default Who all are HVAC technicians?

Just testing waters. Thinking of making a career change but would need to go back to school to do so. What is the difference between the AAS in air conditioning and refrigeration and the certificate? What can one do over the other? Thanks in advance for the help.
robbyreneeward is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 09-05-2017, 11:59 PM   #2
txoutdoorsman24
Pope & Young
 
txoutdoorsman24's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: San Antonio
Hunt In: In camo
Default

Quite a few of us here on tbh. I was in the industry for 9 years and now in oil and gas. Still do plenty o the side though. I have a trade degree/certificate and I've never had an issue getting a job. I got it in Austin in 2007 and went to work immediately. I met many guys whom had the associates from ACC and they were on the same level as a new tech. The teachings aren't different, just longer. You will get the same universal cert once you finish (and pass test) either program. Trade schools are way more expensive I can tell ya that. But you're done in months instead of a couple years.
As for what you get from going either route, nothing is different. You will be a worm in the industry either way lol. Basic teachings and skills will be taught to you either way.
txoutdoorsman24 is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 09-06-2017, 08:16 AM   #3
thegrouse
Ten Point
 
thegrouse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: San Antonio
Hunt In: Wilson and San Saba County
Default

I did 7 years in the field doing commercial service. If you can do the job you will have work. There are plenty of guys with both or neither that do the job. There are certain things that are better explained in a classroom setting though. There is a lot of overtime and on call depending on the company.
thegrouse is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 09-06-2017, 09:11 AM   #4
robbyreneeward
Ten Point
 
robbyreneeward's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Clarksville, TX
Hunt In: Johntown (Bogata), Red River County
Default

Thanks for the input. I just didn't know if one meant more over the other or what. I have a couple guys I know who own their own company and they are making good money. Lots of hard work but they say it's worth it.
robbyreneeward is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 09-06-2017, 09:27 AM   #5
thegrouse
Ten Point
 
thegrouse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: San Antonio
Hunt In: Wilson and San Saba County
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by robbyreneeward View Post
Thanks for the input. I just didn't know if one meant more over the other or what. I have a couple guys I know who own their own company and they are making good money. Lots of hard work but they say it's worth it.
It is a good field but it can be tough work dragging tools, parts and working on rooftops or attics in Texas. I have several friends who own companies and there is plenty of money to be made. A service tech is somewhat limited in his earning ability but can make a good living if you can handle the hours. There will be a learning curve to be proficient in diagnosing and fixing problems even if you have a solid mechanical background. I got out of the field due to the late nights and on call that was always unpredictable. It was tough to make plans when you never knew what time you would be getting off. I swore many nights my light switch activated my on call pager. I was topped out pay wise so I could either start a business or find a new career. I choose the latter.
thegrouse is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 09-06-2017, 09:39 AM   #6
Rat
Ten Point
 
Rat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Bertram
Default

I've been in the industry in Austin for 26 years now. I started as a green tin-knocker and worked my way up. I am now a Service Manager for a large company here in Austin. I love this industry.

As a hiring manager I can tell you this: It doesn't matter if you have an AAS or a trade school cert; we hire based on experience and personality. Entry level techs are entry level techs; schools (all of them) only give you the basics and theory. Pay will be set at time of interview based on how much theory you retained, your personality and your aptitude and mentality to learn.

First year techs will not be able to do either (unless you are a prodigy); there will be extensive time in the field with training techs until you are ready to get out on your own. For some this is a few weeks, for others a few months.

My residential techs make anywhere from 45K to 90K+ with overtime and sales Spiffs (they are not selling techs, we have dedicated salesmen to do that). For a market like Austin 90K is about the upper limit and can be reached by most techs who are eager to learn and hard working in about 4 years.

It is hard work; hot attics and rooftops, heavy tools and equipment, ornery customers, terrible traffic and seasonal swings can reek havoc on a tech just getting in to the business.

But if you stick with it is a very rewarding career. Hard work, brains and a great personality will get you far in this field.

It is by far the best trade, but I may be a little biased.
Rat is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 09-06-2017, 10:35 AM   #7
robbyreneeward
Ten Point
 
robbyreneeward's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Clarksville, TX
Hunt In: Johntown (Bogata), Red River County
Default

Thanks for the input guys keep it coming.
robbyreneeward is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 09-06-2017, 11:18 AM   #8
double bogey
Ten Point
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Mesquite
Hunt In: where ever I can
Default

Pretty much what Rat said. I have done both commercial and residential, and heavy commercial / industrial.
Residential has attics, commercial has rooftops, heavy commercial has cooling towers and mechanical rooms.
I liked mechanical rooms and towers best. Mostly indoor work. Inspections and small repairs in the summer (except for emergencies), Annuals and teardowns in the winter.

I started small and worked up to heavy. Some of the heavy techs I have worked with had only done heavy, and didn't have the know how to do residential.

I now have my own business and work on almost anything. Did some refrigeration for a while but got tired of crawling around on kitchen floors, so I don't do much of that anymore. Right now I am recovering from back surgery and breaking my femur and dislocating my hip last year, also renal cancer. Cancer is in check, working on getting range of motion back in my hip, be a bit before I am back to full strength.

Go to a vocational or trade school, it is very hard to get the basic electrical and refrigeration knowledge just by diving in. You will only get out of it what you put in, it takes about 5 years to make a well rounded commercial tech, and that's if he really wants it. I recommend working for a larger company so you have support from high end techs and training, and the on call duty doesn't come around so often. Some guys like working for the union, lots of commercial companies are, so you can go through the apprenticeship program if you like.

Young Black men are missing the boat on this one, as not that many seem to get in the business, and most companies really need to diversify (most are pressured by the state because they don't have minorities).
Not being racist here, but residential (especially installing) has been taken over by people that don't speak English and work cheaper, so I wouldn't even consider that route. But lots of money is there for commissioned sales techs if you can go that route and still sleep at night.
double bogey is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 09-06-2017, 12:36 PM   #9
robbyreneeward
Ten Point
 
robbyreneeward's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Clarksville, TX
Hunt In: Johntown (Bogata), Red River County
Default

I've been running restaurants for 14 years now. Id like to do commercial and residential both. Just wanting to get out of the restaurant industry and into something that I know will be needed for years to come. I don't mind working hard at all but I'd like for the hard work to benefit me instead of someone else. Not sure if this is the route to go but we will see.
robbyreneeward is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 09-06-2017, 05:25 PM   #10
Rat
Ten Point
 
Rat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Bertram
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by robbyreneeward View Post
...I don't mind working hard at all but I'd like for the hard work to benefit me instead of someone else...
If this is your goal, then ownership is key. As a tech, or even a manager, you will always be working for someone else. Not that there isn't good money in it as a tech or manager, but owners make the real money.

Having said that, many of my techs make more than I do yearly; I just get out of going into attics and on rooftops (most of the time anyway).
Rat is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 09-06-2017, 05:37 PM   #11
kcmarullo
Ten Point
 
kcmarullo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Danbury Tx
Hunt In: South Tx, Oklahoma
Default

I have had my certification for many years , and have never done anything with it,
kcmarullo is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 09-06-2017, 05:49 PM   #12
dxtbowhunter
Four Point
 
dxtbowhunter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: grandview
Hunt In: Texas and Kansas
Default

Been in it for 25+ years. Being a service tech. I'm on call 24/7 365. I'm on the commercial side.
dxtbowhunter is online now   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 09-07-2017, 09:03 AM   #13
robbyreneeward
Ten Point
 
robbyreneeward's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Clarksville, TX
Hunt In: Johntown (Bogata), Red River County
Default

Thanks for all the help guys
robbyreneeward is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:55 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
Copyright 1999-2012, TexasBowhunter.com