What Does HVAC-R Stand For?

HVAC-R stands for heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration. If you're interested in becoming qualified to install heating and cooling systems and you want to know more about the HVAC-R industry, read on for professional definitions and training options. Schools offering Heating Ventilation & Air Conditioning degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

HVAC-R Defined

HVAC-R generally refers to the mechanical systems used in the heating, cooling and ventilation of indoor environments. The people who service them are called HVAC-R technicians. The trade involves installing, maintaining and repairing climate-control devices such as air conditioners, furnaces, refrigerators and freezer units.

Important Facts About HVAC-R Professionals

Average Salary (2014) $46,880 per year
Job Outlook (2014-2024) 14% growth (faster than average)
Key Skills Customer service, attention to detail, troubleshooting and diagnosing problems, time management, dismantling and reassembling mechanical systems
Similar Occupations Electricians, Plumbers, Sheet Metal Workers, Boilermakers

Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics

Systems

Industrial and commercial HVAC-R systems include such components as air ducts, piping, vents and thermostats. Technicians are responsible for installing and maintaining these systems and ensuring that each part is functioning correctly. Refrigerators, freezers and air conditioners operate with liquid refrigerants to expel heat from indoor areas. Similarly, heating systems use oil, gas and electric components to generate heat, which is then distributed through air ducts and vents.

Technician Training

If you're considering a career as an HVAC-R technician, you can seek an apprenticeship with an experienced, licensed technician. In this situation, you would gradually learn the trade while working under supervision, eventually taking on more responsibilities as your knowledge and skills increase. You could also seek out formal postsecondary training programs and professional development courses, which might be found through junior colleges, trade schools, community colleges and professional HVAC-R associations. Training programs may include technical courses in commercial refrigeration, heating systems, air conditioning and basic electricity.

Standards and Organizations

The industry has established guidelines to standardize the installation of products and repair methodology. HVAC-R standards are set by such organizations as the Air Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) and the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA). Some organizations such as AHRI, ACCA, and the North American Technician Excellence (NATE) offer professional certifications that can attest to your skills and help advance your career.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Lincoln Tech

    Lincoln Tech responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Lincoln Tech:

    • Certificates

    Campus Locations:

    • Maryland: Columbia
  • Johns Hopkins University

    Johns Hopkins University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Johns Hopkins University:

    • Master

    Online Programs Available

  • Penn Foster

    Penn Foster responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Penn Foster:

    • Certificates

    Online Programs Available

  • Northcentral University

    Northcentral University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Northcentral University:

    Online Programs Available

  • Virginia College

    Virginia College responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Virginia College:

    • Certificates

    Online Programs Available

  • Fortis College

    Fortis College responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Fortis College:

    • Associate Programs
    • Certificates

    Campus-Based Programs Available:

    View All Locations
    • Alabama: Birmingham, Dothan, Foley, Mobile, Montgomery
    • Florida: Birmingham, Dothan, Foley, Mobile, Montgomery, Port St Lucie
    • Georgia: Birmingham, Dothan, Foley, Mobile, Montgomery, Port St Lucie, Smyrna
    • New Jersey: Birmingham, Dothan, Foley, Mobile, Montgomery, Port St Lucie, Smyrna, Wayne
    • Ohio: Birmingham, Dothan, Foley, Mobile, Montgomery, Port St Lucie, Smyrna, Wayne, Centerville, Cuyahoga Falls
    • South Carolina: Birmingham, Dothan, Foley, Mobile, Montgomery, Port St Lucie, Smyrna, Wayne, Centerville, Cuyahoga Falls, Columbia
    • Tennessee: Birmingham, Dothan, Foley, Mobile, Montgomery, Port St Lucie, Smyrna, Wayne, Centerville, Cuyahoga Falls, Columbia, Cookeville, Nashville
    • Texas: Birmingham, Dothan, Foley, Mobile, Montgomery, Port St Lucie, Smyrna, Wayne, Centerville, Cuyahoga Falls, Columbia, Cookeville, Nashville, Houston
    • Utah: Birmingham, Dothan, Foley, Mobile, Montgomery, Port St Lucie, Smyrna, Wayne, Centerville, Cuyahoga Falls, Columbia, Cookeville, Nashville, Houston, Salt Lake City
    • Virginia: Birmingham, Dothan, Foley, Mobile, Montgomery, Port St Lucie, Smyrna, Wayne, Centerville, Cuyahoga Falls, Columbia, Cookeville, Nashville, Houston, Salt Lake City, Norfolk
  • Penn Foster High School

    Penn Foster High School responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Penn Foster High School:

    Online Programs Available

  • Ferris State University

    Campus Locations:

    • Michigan: Big Rapids
  • New England Institute of Technology

    Campus Locations:

    • Rhode Island: Warwick
  • Brightwood College

    Brightwood College responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Brightwood College:

    • Certificates

    Campus Locations:

    • Texas: Brownsville