New Mexico is home to mountainous terrain that sports hot summers and mild winters. Those working in heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) can enjoy a base pay of $52,000+ with the option to work overtime in the Land of Enchantment.
To become an HVAC tech in NM, you’ll need the proper training and to be employed by a certified or licensed contractor. After gaining experience under your supervisor, you can apply for your NM mechanical journeyman license with a specialization in your branch of HVAC work. HVAC contractors are also licensed by the state.
Do You Need an HVAC Tech Certification in New Mexico?
You do not need an HVAC certification, license, or apprenticeship to work as an HVAC tech in New Mexico. Your employer will determine whether or not you’re eligible to be hired.
If you plan to stay in the field and advance, you’ll want to gain enough experience to apply to be a journeyman technician and, later on, an HVAC contractor.
Becoming an HVAC Journeyman in NM
By following these simple steps you’ll soon be on your way to an HVAC career.
- Become an HVAC Tech
HVAC techs and journeyman techs complete the same kind of work, except that HVAC techs must be overseen by a certified or licensed supervisor.
New Mexico doesn’t have specific training requirements for technicians, but the standard recommendation is to complete an HVAC training and/or educational program through a trade school, apprenticeship, or community college.
Some employers may hire you without experience and train you on the job, but gaining basic knowledge of the trade beforehand will help you avoid many mishaps and mistakes.
If working with refrigerants, you’ll also need to get your EPA 608 Certificate before working.
- Gain Sufficient Experience
Once you’re employed, you’ll need anywhere from six months to four years of experience depending on the mechanical license classification you want to have (see Section F for details). Make sure your experience is under a licensed journeyman or contractor who can attest to your work once you apply for your license.
- Apply for Your Mechanical License
You can apply for an HVAC mechanical journeyman license as a pipe fitter, natural gas fitter, both, refrigeration tech, or boiler operator.
You’ll apply for your license directly through PSI Exams. After scheduling and passing the exam and paying all fees, you will have your mechanical journeyman license with your HVAC classification.
Certain classifications require Continuing Education (CE) hours to renew your license. See here for CE requirements once licensed.
Becoming an HVAC Contractor in NM
HVAC contractors must have a registered business, show proof of financial responsibility, apply for a license, and have a qualifying party pass all required exams through PSI. The qualifying party can be the business owner or a hired HVAC journeyman with at least four years of relevant experience within the last decade.
A detailed list of requirements for both the applicant and qualifying party can be found here.
Once you receive your license, you’ll need to present a bond of $10,000 that is good for the next three years.
To read this article in Spanish, click here.