HVAC Tech Classes in Texas (Top Schools)

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Texas doesn’t differ much from other states when it comes to HVAC professional requirements.

That is, (1) get educated, (2) receive training and field experience, and (3) get certified and licensed.

Once you complete all three, you will have the competencies to enter the industry, allowing you to earn higher pay.

So if you want to enter this career, here is the information you need to become an HVAC professional in Texas.

HVAC Programs in Texas

The best way you can prepare for the industry and certification/licensure exams is by completing an approved HVAC program.

Here, you’ll learn the fundamentals of the HVAC/R work and other relevant topics.

In the table below, you’ll find some of the schools offering HVAC programs in Texas.

52 HVAC Schools in Texas

School NameAddress
Ashworth College6625 The Corners Pkwy NW #500, Norcross, GA 30092
Anthem College - Houston70 FM 1960 West, Houston, TX 77090
Lincoln College of Technology2501 East Arkansas Lane, Grand Prairie, TX 75052
Angelina Community College3500 S First St, Lufkin, TX 75904
Austin Community College5930 Middle Fiskville, Austin, TX 78752
Brazosport College500 College Drive, Lake Jackson, TX 77566
Capital City Trade and Tech205 E. Riverside Drive, Austin, TX 78704
Career Centers of TX - Brownsville1900 N. Expressway, Brownsville, TX 78521
Central Texas CollegePO Box 1800, Killeen, TX 76540
Cisco Junior College717 E Industrial Blvd., Abilene, TX 79602
Coastal Bend College1411 Bensdale, Pleasanton, TX 78102
College of the Mainland1200 Amburn, Texas City, TX 77591
Construction Education Foundation1401-A Royal Lane, DFW Airport, TX 75261
Del Mar College401 Old Brownsville Road, Corpus Christi, TX 78404
Eastfield College/DCCCD3737 Motley Drive, Mesquite, TX 75150
El Paso Community CollegePO Box 20500, El Paso, TX 79998
Everest College300 Six Flags Dr #100, Arlington, TX 76011
Fortis Institute450 N. Sam Houston Parkway E, Suite 200, Houston, TX 77060
Frank Phillips College1301 W. Roosevelt, Broger, TX 79008
Galveston College - HVAC4102 Avenue Q, Galveston, TX 77550
Grayson County College - West Campus6101 Grayson Drive, Denison, TX 75020
Hill CollegePO Box 1899, Cleburne, TX 76033
Houston Community College - Central College1300 Holman, Houston, TX 77004
HVAC Career Training CenterMultiple Locations in Texas: Houston, Dallas, Austin, San Antonio, and El Paso
HVAC Training Center15424 Mound, Hockley, TX 77447
hvacredu.net (Online Training)P.O. Box 77, Heron, MT 59844
Kilgore College1100 Broadway, Longview, TX 75662
Lamar Institute of Technology855 East Lavaca, Beaumont, TX 77705
Lamar State College/PA1500 Procter Street, Port Arthur, TX 77640
Laredo Community CollegeWest End Washington St., Laredo, TX 78040
Lee CollegePO Box 818, Baytown, TX 77522
Lindsey-Cooper Refrigeration School815 S. Beltline Road, Irving, TX 75060
Midland College3600 North Garfield, Midland, TX 79705
National Institute of Technology6550 First Park Ten Blvd., San Antonio, TX 78213
North Central Texas College1525 W. California Street, Gainesville, TX 76240
North Harris County College2700 W Thorne Road, Houston, TX 77073
North Lake College-DCCCD201 W. University, Odessa, TX 79764
Paris Junior College2400 Clarksville Street, Paris, TX 75460
Professional Career Training Institute227 W. Airtex Drive, Houston, TX 77090
San Jacinto College13735 Beamer Road, Houston, TX 77346
South Plains College1401 College Avenue, Levelland, TX 79336
South Texas CollegePO Box 9701, McAllen, TX 78502
Southwest Texas Junior College2401 Garner Field Road, Uvalde, TX 78801
St. Phillips College - Southwest Campus800 Quintana Road, San Antonio, TX 78211
Tarrant County College - South Campus5301 Campus Drive, Fort Worth, TX 76119
Texas State Technical College300 College Drive, Sweetwater, TX 79556
Trinity Valley Community College100 Cardinal Drive, Palestine, TX 75801
Tyler Junior College1327 S. Baxter Street, Tyler, TX 75701
Vernon College Skills Training Center2813 Central Expressway E, Wichita Falls, TX 76302
Victoria College2200 E. Red River, Victoria, TX 77901
Western Technical Institute1000 Texas Avenue, El Paso, TX 79901
Wharton County Junior College911 Boling Hwy, Wharton, TX 77488

How to Get Licensed in Texas

Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation oversees the licenses of HVAC technicians and contractors.

The Department will issue 3 types of licenses:

  • For HVAC technicians
    • Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Registered Technician
    • Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Certified Technician
  • For HVAC contractors
    • Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor – Class A or Class B

Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Registered Technician

An ACR registered technician assists ACR contractors with air conditioning and refrigeration work.

Anyone who wants to get this must complete these requirements to register with the state:

  • Must be at least 18 years old
  • Submit a duly accomplished ACR Registered Technician application form
  • Pay the application fee of $20

Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Certified Technician

Like the registered technician, an ACR certified technician also assists ACR contractors with air conditioning and refrigeration work.

But unlike the former, only the latter can have the privilege to call themselves “certified technicians.”

To qualify for this license, you must meet the following:

  • Must be at least 18 years old
  • Satisfy the experience or training requirement, either:
    • Verified 24 months of work experience under a licensed ACR contractor
      • If you’re a military veteran or service member, provide supporting documents that you’ve been trained or performed ACR work as part of your Military Occupational Specialty (MOS)
    • Proof of completing a 2000-hour Department-approved ACR certification training program within the last 48 months
  • Submit a duly accomplished ACR Certified Technician application form
  • Pay the application fee of $50
  • Successfully pass the ACR Certified Technician Exam

Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor

An ACR contractor performs air conditioning and refrigeration work anywhere in the state.

There are 2 classes for this license:

  • Class A – work with any size unit
  • Class B – work on up to 25 tons of cooling capacity and 1.5 million BTUs/hour output heating capacity

Under each class, you’ll choose any of these 3 endorsements:

  • Environmental Air Conditioning
  • Commercial Refrigeration
  • Process Cooling or Heating

To qualify for this license, you must meet the following:

  • Must be at least 18 years old
  • Meet the experience requirements, either:
    • Verified 48 months of ACR work experience in the past 72 months under a licensed ACR contractor
    • If you’re a certified technician for the past 12 months, a verified 36 months of ACR work experience in the past 48 months under a licensed ACR contractor
    • If you don’t have work experience, you can substitute your education and relevant experiences
      • 24 months of practical experience if you completed a 4-year degree in…
        • Air conditioning engineering or technology
        • Refrigeration engineering or technology
        • Mechanical engineering
      • 12 months of practical experience if you completed a 2-year diploma, associate’s degree, or certification with a primary focus on ACR work
      • 6 months of practical experience if you completed a 1-year certification program (or 2 semesters) in ACR work
      • 12 months of practical experience if you completed 2,000 hours of apprenticeship
      • 48 months of practical experience if you performed ACR-related work for 4+ years in the following areas:
        • Have worked for regulated electric or gas utility
        • You’re a licensed engineer in Texas who engaged in ACR work as part of employment
        • Employed by an industrial operation and you perform process cooling or heating work for the operation
        • You’re a government employee engaged in ACR-related work
      • 48 months of practical experience if you completed at least 24 months of military experience in ACR-work as part of your MOS
  • Successfully pass the ACR Contractor Exam
  • Provide a certificate of insurance with general liability coverage of at least…
    • Class A
      • $300,000 per occurrence
      • $300,000 aggregate for products and completed operations
      • $600,000 aggregate
    • Class B
      • $100,000 per occurrence
      • $100,000 aggregate for products and completed operations
      • $200,000 aggregate

Renewal Requirements

All 4 licenses will expire 1 year from issuance.

To renew, you must submit the following:

  • For the registered and certified technician
    • Complete the online renewal application form
    • Pay the renewal fee
      • Registered technician – $20
      • Certified technician – $35
  • For the Class A and B contractor
    • Complete 8 hours of approved continuing education coursework
    • Complete the online renewal application form
    • Pay the renewal fee of $65

Reciprocity Requirements

Currently, Texas only reciprocates for the ACR contractor license with 2 states:

  • Georgia
  • South Carolina

To apply, submit to the Department the following:

  • Completed ACR contractor license application form
  • Payment of application fee of $115
  • Letter of good standing from your state
  • Copy of your current out-of-state license
  • Completed certificate of insurance

ACR Exam

The exams for the ACR certified technician and ACR contractor will be administered by PSI.

Here are the details for the exam:

  • Exam will be a computer-based test and available in English or Spanish
  • It’s an open book exam, and you’re allowed to bring approved reference materials to the testing center
  • Depending on your license application, you will take the following:
ExamFeeNo. of ItemsDuration
Class A Environmental Air Conditioning$74120230 minutes
Class B Environmental Air Conditioning$60100170 minutes
Class A Commercial Refrigeration$74120230 minutes
Class B Commercial Refrigeration$60100170 minutes
Certified Technician$6060112 minutes

 

  • Passing score is 70%
  • Score results will be available immediately upon finishing the exam
    • If you pass, the Department will issue your license after approving the license application
    • If you fail, you have unlimited attempts until your application expires (1 year) to successfully pass the required exam

EPA Certification

In this line of work, you’ll eventually service and dispose of refrigerants, an essential element in the HVAC/R system but are harmful to the environment.

So under the Clean Air Act, you must obtain an EPA Section 608 Technician Certification.

Having one will assure the government, employers, and clients that you have the capabilities to work with refrigerants.

To learn more about this certification, check out our guide to the EPA certification.

Potential Salary

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, HVAC technicians in Texas can earn an average annual salary of $51,270 as of May 2021.

Entry-level can earn up to $33,890, while senior experts can earn more than $74,400.

The table below shows the salaries in 10 of Texas’s cities for your reference.

Annual Salary Range:
$33K
$51K
$74K

Average Salary of HVAC Techs in Texas

City NameSalary
Houston$47,896
Dallas$46,416
San Antonio$45,513
Austin$46,027
El Paso$40,872
Fort Worth$45,532
Arlington$45,458
Corpus Christi$43,242
Plano$46,216
Garland$46,316
* Salary information last updated 2022

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