Gargaro's World: How Much Techs Get Paid

April 13, 2009
/ Print / Reprints /
ShareMore
/ Text Size+

Do HVAC technicians get paid enough? All our technician readers shaking their heads no should read a recent article from Careerbuilder.com. In an article titled, “5 Salaries You Thought Would Be Higher,” HVACR mechanic and installer took second place on this dubious list.

Talk about income level tends to be taboo. The only thing most people know for sure is that they don’t make enough money and their bosses make too much. Careerbuilder.com states the average HVAC tech makes $40,630. In the “why it’s surprising section,” the article explains that while consumers pay a lot per hour for the services, part of that money goes to parts, transportation, etc.

Well, let’s try to get past the part where it is surprising that it costs money to run a business. Items such as health care, training, and marketing costs might impact the bottom line just a tad. The real question is why is there such a sticker shock on the hourly rate? Does everyone scream when they pay $4 for a pint of beer at the local bar that obviously does not cost that much to produce since I can get a 12 pack for $15 at the grocery store? Why does everybody respect other professions’ cost of doing business, but that does not translate to HVAC?

I would say “Show HVAC the Money,” but that would just shine light on how horribly outdated my pop culture references are. In case you are curious, the other four jobs that made the top five were fishers, construction and maintenance painters, court reporters, and foresters.

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to The NEWS Magazine

Recent Articles by Kyle Gargaro

You must login or register in order to post a comment.

Why HVAC Technicians get low pay

Bob Moller aka Icehouse
April 13, 2009
Our industry as a whole is to blame. It took until now to get technicians certified, even though many balk at this. You want to be paid like a professional, look and act like one. The image most homeowners have is of a "Glorified Grease Monkey" and we have only ourselves to blame. Good God take pride in yourself as well as your work. Then and only then will you be respected and paid accordingly.

low pay

bud ward
April 13, 2009
lets see you want me to climb on hot roofs in summer or attic area + work in freezing cold in the winter+ pay me how much?if it werent for the guys in the field, not the guys in the office drinking starbucks what would get done? owners managers need to realize the field staff is the bread+ butter of the company.companys that dont pay well havebig turnover sometimes they cant figure out why!the job is the job if you have 1year or 10 years in the field good working habits should be rewarded yearly by a owner or mgr.not to mention all the technical,mental, physcial skills you need to survive everyday.not enough credit is given to the workforce,i tip my hat to each + every guy out there getting the job done

Technicians Pay

Paul Frigo
April 13, 2009
There is a great deal of resistance by home owners and small business owners to the hourly rates that need to be charged inorder for an HVAC company to increase salaries. As technicians we can make a difference and hopefully improve our pay checks. Simple things make a big difference in how people preceive us. How do we address and communicate with our customers? What about our appearance? Take alook at the video on the coutdown to 2010 page of the NEWS. How many uniforms do you see? Could a more professional presentation be made to home owners and business owners?

HVAC wages

Mike aka Maineiac
April 22, 2009
I agree with Bob partly. We have too many certifications out there with out any clout. I feel the tech's should be State licenced and held professionally and financially responsible for their work or mistakes. Several complaints and pull the licence. Certifications need to be adopted by the states or they will carry no weight.

HVAC Wages

Rat
April 22, 2009
I agree with most comments above, but I think we are to blame. I see far too many Techs in the field with years of experience but without the skill set to reflect the years. Is universal certification the answer? Maybe, but I can tell you universal (State level) licensing has done little for our trade. When the HVAC/R Industry as a WHOLE stops catering to the lowest common denominator (whether it be lowball bids or a half @55ed job) we will start to see an increase in wages. We used to be Service ENGINEERS now we are Service TECHNICIANS; and we wonder why we make less...

Technician Wages

Tony aka ServiceF1rst
April 22, 2009
Good article Kyle. Good responses from everyone also. The unfortunate fact being that we as an industry - and I don't care how you slice the industry up - technicians, owners, managers, OEM's or vendors - or if you swallow it all in one big ball - continue to tolerate decade in and decade out, hacks. We don't even police ourselves (effectively) to promote professionalism, industry wide acceptance and implementation of Best Practice standards or even ethical accountability......we might all think no one's watching, but believe me they are - divisiveness creates vacuum in any industry and where that vacuum is present so to is unethical practices, low balling and back stabbing. We will never enjoy respect and gain trust collectively as an industry, until we respect and trust ourselves - neither also will we reap the benefits associated with those commodities. This is not a technician issue it's an industry issue, that is going to require industry resolution.

Technician Wages

Tony aka ServiceF1rst
April 22, 2009
Good article Kyle. Good responses from everyone also. The unfortunate fact being that we as an industry - and I don't care how you slice the industry up - technicians, owners, managers, OEM's or vendors - or if you swallow it all in one big ball - continue to tolerate decade in and decade out, hacks. We don't even police ourselves (effectively) to promote professionalism, industry wide acceptance and implementation of Best Practice standards or even ethical accountability......we might all think no one's watching, but believe me they are - divisiveness creates vacuum in any industry and where that vacuum is present so to is unethical practices, low balling and back stabbing. We will never enjoy respect and gain trust collectively as an industry, until we respect and trust ourselves - neither also will we reap the benefits associated with those commodities. This is not a technician issue it's an industry issue, that is going to require industry resolution.

HVAC wages

Ron T
April 22, 2009
Maniac is right there needs to some teeth in licensing laws and enforcement. If you perform like a professional and look professional you will be paid like a professional.

HVAC wages

Roger
April 23, 2009
For me it's simple, If you have a tech who gets very few call backs, is always dependible and on time is constantly seeking to educate himself and always gives a good 8 hours for 8 hours pay then he deserves the best pay the employer can provide, Prefromance,performance, performance

Good Comments

Kyle Gargaro
April 24, 2009
This seems to be a hot-button topic. Thanks for the comments. Very interesting.

Wages

Alfred Moller aka Burnerfixer
April 27, 2009
Take a look at yourself as a technician, would you want you in your home or business. I see many good technicians who look more like they are heading for a gang fight then doing HVAC/R service. Cut off shirts (must show off the tatoos), cut off or raggy jeans. Would you want something around your wife and kids who look like this seriously

pay?

dave
June 24, 2009
From what I have seen ,the pay doesn't equal the amount of experience we have. I can make 6-10,000 more driving over the road.

Multimedia

Videos

Image Galleries

2014 MCAA Annual Convention

Scenes from the 2014 MCAA Annual Convention in Scottsdale, Ariz.

Podcasts

NEWSmakers: Julian Scadden

Training is an ongoing process. Julian will discuss how you can generate maximum return on time and energy invested training by following a three part process. Listen to this podcast to get expert tips on training, tracking and follow up. 

More Podcasts

THE MAGAZINE

ACHRNEWS

NEWS 04-14-14 cover

2014 April 14

Check out the weekly edition of The NEWS today!

Table Of Contents Subscribe

SERVICE CALLS POLL

Which statement on service calls best applies to your business?
View Results Poll Archive

HVACR INDUSTRY STORE

plumbing-hvac.gif
2014 National Plumbing & HVAC Estimator

Every plumbing and HVAC estimator can use the cost estimates in this practical manual!

More Products

Clear Seas Research

 

Clear Seas ResearchWith access to over one million professionals and more than 60 industry-specific publications, Clear Seas Research offers relevant insights from those who know your industry best. Let us customize a market research solution that exceeds your marketing goals.

DON'T MISS A THING

Magazine image
 
Register today for complete access to ACHRNews.com. Get full access to the latest features, Extra Edition, and more.

STAY CONNECTED

facebook icontwitter iconyoutube iconLinkedIn i con