HVAC Tech Classes in South Carolina (Top Schools)

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South Carolina has a growing HVAC industry.

It now has 5,700 employed individuals as of May 2021 per the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

The reason for this high demand for HVAC professionals lies in the following:

New construction projects in residential and commercial sectors
Sophistry in the climate-control systems to make them more environment-friendly

So if you want to enter this industry, the information below can help you get started in your HVAC career in South Carolina.

HVAC Programs in South Carolina

Employers in the HVAC industry prefer candidates who completed proper education and had practical training.

That’s why many aspirants like you would enroll in approved HVAC programs.

Plus, not only can these programs help you with learning the trade, but it also prepares you for the licensure exams.

Upon completion, it can expand your job opportunities, opening doors toward becoming a top-earning HVAC professional.

The table below lists some of the accredited HVAC schools in South Carolina.

16 HVAC Schools in South Carolina

School NameAddress
Ashworth College6625 The Corners Pkwy NW #500, Norcross, GA 30092
Aiken Technology CollegePO Drawer 696, Aiken, SC 29802
Central Carolina Technical SchoolN.Guigard Drive, Sumter, SC 29150
Florence-Darlington Technical CollegePO Box 100548, Florence, SC 29501
Fortis College246 Stoneridge Dr, Columbia, SC 29210
Greenville Technical College - Brashier Campus1830 W. Georgia Road, Simpsonville, SC 29680
Horry-Georgetown Technical College2050 Highway 501 E., Conway, SC 29526
HVAC Career Training CenterMultiple locations within the state
hvacredu.net (Online Training)P.O. Box 77, Heron, MT 59844
Midlands Technical CollegePO Box 2408, Columbia, SC 29202
Piedmont Technical College - Lee Walters CampusPO Drawer 1467, Greenwood, SC 29648
Technical College of the Low CountryPO Box 1288, Charleston, SC 29423
Tri County Technical CollegePO Box 587, Pendleton, SC 29670
Trident Technical College - ETMPO Box 118067, Charleston, SC 29423
Williamsburg Technical College601 MLK Jr. Avenue, Kingstree, SC 29556
York Technical College452 South Anderson Road, Rockhall, SC 29730

How to Get Licensed in South Carolina

South Carolina doesn’t require HVAC technicians state-level licenses, provided they’ll work under a licensed contractor.

However, if they want to ascertain their skill level, they can obtain Trades Certification from the Municipal Association of South Carolina (MASC).

Meanwhile, HVAC contractors will need state-level licenses, which will be given by 2 governing bodies.

  • Contractor’s Licensing Board (CLB) – issues Commercial Mechanical Contractor License
  • Residential Builders Commission (RBC) – issues Residential Specialty HVAC Contractor License

The SC Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation (LLR) will oversee these bodies.

MASC Trades Certification for HVAC

MASC Trades Certification is a skills recognition certification.

It is NOT a state-issued certification/license, although it’s been recognized across the state.

An HVAC technician can apply for the following certifications:

  • Master Mechanical (HARV)
    • Allows you to work on AC, refrigeration, heating, and ventilation systems with unlimited horsepower or tonnage
  • Journeyman Unlimited Air Conditioning
    • Allows you to work on the following systems with unlimited horsepower and tonnage:
      • AC
      • Refrigeration
      • Piping vessels
      • Warm air heating
      • Low-pressure boilers
      • Ventilation systems
      • Duct systems
      • Insulation
      • Related appurtenances within a complete system
  • Residential HVAC
    • Allows you to perform residential HVAC work, which includes:
      • AC and heat pump equipment
      • LP and natural gas
      • Piping
      • Fuel oil appliances and piping
      • Ductwork
      • Other associated trades

Application Requirements for Certification

To obtain certification, you need to meet the following:

  • Completed application form
  • Pay the application fee – $35
  • Proof of meeting the experience and/or education requirements
    • Journeyman
      • At least 2 years of trade experience under the supervision of a journeyman or master
      • Can credit up to 1 year of experience if you completed a 2-year degree from an accredited college
    • Master
      • At least 4 years of trade experience as a certified journeyman, 2 years of which must be under the supervision of a master
      • If you have 10 years of trade experience, the journeyman requirement can be waived
  • Provide a copy of the following:
    • Your EPA certification
    • Any state-issued or locally-issued license you may have
  • Successfully pass the exam for the chosen certification

Exam Details

MASC has contracted with Prov, Inc. to administer the exams.

So upon getting MASC’s approval, you can schedule and sit for the exam.

You must successfully pass all required exams within the 2-year eligibility period.

Here are the exam details:

  • Exam will be computer-based, and you can take it either at the testing center or in Prov’s Examroom, a remote test monitoring service
  • It’s an open-book exam where you can use authorized reference materials in the testing center
  • Exam duration
    • Master Mechanical (HARV) – 4.5 hours
    • Journeyman Unlimited AC – 3 hours
    • Residential HVAC – 3 hours
  • Exam fee – $100
  • Passing rate – 70%

Renewal Requirements

Your certification will expire after 1 year for journeyman certification and after 2 years for master certification.

To renew, you must complete the following:

  • Certification renewal application
  • Pay the renewal fee
    • Journeyman – $20
    • Master – $50

Commercial Mechanical Contractor License

One of the state-level HVAC licenses you can obtain is the Commercial Mechanical Contractor License.

Apply only for this license if you’ll take on commercial construction projects over $5,000.

This license has several subclassifications, and the following are the ones related to HVAC:

  • Air conditioning
    • Allows you to work on AC equipment and systems
  • Heating
    • Allows you to work on heating equipment and systems
  • Packaged equipment (AC and heating)
    • Allows you to work on AC-heating packaged equipment with up to 25 tons of cooling capacity and 500,000 BTU/h heating per unit
  • Refrigeration
    • Allows you to work on refrigeration equipment and systems used for preserving perishable goods by the commercial, industrial, and manufacturing businesses

Application Requirements for Licensure

To qualify for this license, you must have…

  • At least 2 years of trade experience within the last 5 years for the chosen classification
  • Successfully passed the required exams

To apply, submit the following to CLB:

  • Completed and notarized forms
    • Doc#165 Initial Application
    • Verification of Lawful Presence in the U.S., with the corresponding supplemental documents
  • Pay the required license application fee
  • Business registration with the SC Secretary of State (except for sole proprietorship and general partnership)
  • Provide a financial statement for the past 12 months or surety bond according to your chosen group limit
    • If you choose a financial statement, provide the following:
      • Groups 1 and 2 – Doc#172 Owner-prepared Financial Statement form
      • Groups 3 and 4 – compiled financial statements prepared by the CPA or PA
      • Group 5 – audited financial statements prepared by the CPA or PA
Group No.Limit per JobNet WorthSurety Bond
Group 1$17,500$3,500$7,000
Group 2$50,000$10,000$20,000
Group 3$100,000$20,000$40,000
Group 4$200,000$40,000$80,000
Group 5Unlimited$200,000$400,000
  • Designate and provide the Primary Qualifying Party (PQP) information and any additional Qualifying Party (QP)
  • Proof of work experience of the QP

Exam Details

CLB has contracted with PSI to administer the exams.

Upon receiving approval to test, you have 12 months to successfully pass the exam.

Here are the exam details:

  • You’ll take 2 exam portions
    • SC business and law – 50 questions in 125 minutes
    • Mechanical trade
      • Air conditioning – 80 questions in 4 hours
      • Heating – 50 questions in 3 hours
      • Packaged equipment – 80 questions in 4 hours
      • Refrigeration – 50 questions in 3 hours
  • It will be a computer-based exam
  • It’s an open-book exam where you can use authorized reference materials at the testing center
  • Exam fee
    • SC business and law – $75
    • Mechanical trade
      • Air conditioning – $60
      • Heating – $75
      • Packaged equipment – $60
      • Refrigeration – $75
  • Passing rate – 70%
  • Number of exam attempts
    • Business and law – unlimited
    • Mechanical trade – 2 attempts to successfully pass the exam, with 6 months in-between each attempt

Renewal Requirements

Your license will expire on October 31 every odd-numbered year.

To renew, submit the following to CLB:

  • Completed Doc#176 General Contractor’s Renewal Form
  • Pay the required renewal fee
  • Provide the financial statement or surety bond for your chosen group limit

Residential Specialty HVAC Contractor License

Another state-level license you can obtain is the Residential Specialty HVAC Contractor License.

Apply only for this license if you’ll solely perform residential works and take on projects over $200.

Application Requirements for Licensure

To qualify for this license, you must have…

  • At least 1 year of trade experience within the last 5 years
  • Successfully passed the required exams

To apply, submit the following to RBC:

  • Completed and notarized forms
    • Residential Specialty HVAC License Application
    • Verification of Lawful Presence in the U.S., with the corresponding supplemental documents
  • Pay the required fee
    • Application fee – $135
    • License fee
      • $220 if the license will be issued July 1 of an odd-numbered year onwards
      • $110 if the license will be issued on July 1 of an even-numbered year onwards
  • A copy of your Social Security Card
  • A copy of any valid ID (state-issued ID, driver’s license, passport, military ID)
  • Proof of trade experience (certification, transcripts, etc.)
  • An Affidavit of Experience from your employer
  • Copies of Forms W-2 and/or 1099 of your employer
  • If you’re incorporated, include the following:
    • A copy of the Certificate of Existence/Authorization from the SC Secretary of State
    • Articles of Incorporation and documentation showing the percentage of ownership
  • If you have prior convictions, include the following:
    • Written explanation
    • Criminal history background check from the State Law Enforcement Division
    • Other supporting documents
  • If you’ll take projects over $5,000, submit an original surety bond of $10,000

Exam Details

RBC has contracted with PSI to administer the exams.

Upon receiving approval to test, you have 12 months to successfully pass the exam.

Here are the exam details:

  • You’ll take 2 exam portions
    • SC business and law – 50 questions in 120 minutes
    • Residential HVAC – 80 questions in 240 minutes
  • It will be a computer-based exam
  • It’s an open-book exam where you can use authorized reference materials at the testing center
  • Exam fee – $100 each
  • Passing rate
    • SC business and law – 68%
    • Residential HVAC – 65%
  • You have 3 attempts to successfully pass the exam

Renewal Requirements

Your license will expire on June 30 every odd-numbered year.

To renew, complete the following:

  • License renewal online application
  • Pay the renewal fee – $220

EPA Certification

The Environmental Protection Agency requires anyone working with refrigerant-containing equipment to be certified.

Obtaining the EPA Section 608 Technician Certification ensures that you can properly and safely handle these refrigerants.

It has 4 types that you can apply for, depending on the equipment you’ll work with the most:

  • Type I
  • Type II
  • Type III
  • Universal

To learn which type to certify for and how to earn it, check out our guide to the EPA certification.

Potential Salary

Per BLS, the salary information for HVAC technicians in South Carolina as of May 201 is as follows:

  • Annual mean wage – $44,130
  • 10th percentile – $29,290
  • 90th percentile – $61,200

Meanwhile, the table below shows the salaries in 10 of the state’s cities.

Annual Salary Range:
$29K
$44K
$61K

Average Salary of HVAC Techs in South Carolina

City NameSalary
Columbia$43,887
Charleston$44,104
North Charleston$44,104
Greenville$45,233
Rock Hill$45,995
Mount Pleasant$44,104
Spartanburg$43,345
Sumter$41,784
Hilton Head Island$43,397
* Salary information last updated 2022

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