How to Become an HVAC Technician in Minnesota

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If you are sick of your boring job and want something more consistent and rewarding, consider a role as an HVAC technician in Minnesota.

It can be rewarding when you see the smiles on customers’ faces when you install their new air conditioner before the hot summer months arrive.

The hot and cold weather will always be around, so ensuring people in Minnesota are comfortable during those times is essential.

Check out my detailed guide on becoming an HVAC technician in Minnesota.

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Get information on HVACR Certified Technician programs by entering your zip code and request enrollment information.

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How to Become an HVAC Technician in Minnesota: A Step-by-Step Guide

There are two ways you can become an HVAC technician in Minnesota.

You can choose to complete your studies at a college and pass all the license and certification exams or take up an apprenticeship.

When completing the course, you will do more theory work than hands-on.

With an apprenticeship, you work hands-on for specific days, and then you must complete a certain amount of hours in the classroom.

Attending College

While attending college, you will, in most cases, complete a one-year course to cover the main aspects of the course.

You will also need to obtain your EPA certificates, which come in four parts.

You may only need to complete some of them, depending on the work you are looking at doing.

The course is Monday to Friday, with some schools allowing you to do part or full-time learning, but overall, you need to complete both work experience and school hours.

Many schools offer this course, which is listed below for your reference.

Complete an Apprenticeship

You can complete an apprenticeship in HVAC, which will give you the skills and qualifications to work as a technician.

Apprenticeships can take up to three years to complete as you are both working in the field and studying the theory side simultaneously.

Apprenticeships are preferred as they get you out into the workforce, getting hands-on experience from day 1.

To qualify for an apprenticeship, you need the following:

  • Be 18 years of age
  • GED or high school diploma
  • Valid driver’s license

You need to be accepted to a technical or community college where you will do your certificate exam.

All up, you must do between 6-9 months of schooling.

Typically, you will only go to school every few weeks for a couple of days, each time until you have completed the theory.

Apprenticeships need to be treated as a job as after you have finished the apprenticeship if you have shown you’re a dedicated worker, some employers will hire you directly to work with them.

Each stage takes around one year to complete, and you will learn how to do everything in that time frame.

In the end, you will gain several certificates for HVAC duties.

The apprenticeship will also prepare you for working independently if you decide to open your own business.

At the end of the course, you will receive the primary certificate that qualifies you to work as an HVAC technician.

Pipefitters Local Union 539 sponsors a program that offers HVAC apprenticeships in Minnesota that last for five years.

You get 8,000 hours doing hands-on work and 1000 hours for theory and classroom work.

Requirements For Your HVAC License

It will depend on which city you are in as to what the requirements will be for getting your HVAC trade license and competency card.

You need to meet these requirements to finalize your HVAC in the Minneapolis area:

  • Complete trade school or
  • Complete an apprenticeship
  • Signed paperwork for HVAC licensed master contactor
  • Completed the application paperwork for the competency exam
  • Complete the course successfully

You will need to provide proof of training and education or work experience.

These can be in the form of employment letters, trade diploma certificates, or university certificates.

To get your master HVAC license, you need to obtain further studies and paperwork such as these:

  • Working for one year as an HVAC tradesperson
  • Signed paperwork from the contractors for master HVAC
  • Fill out the application form for the exam
  • Gain a successful passing score.

Certification Exam

You need an EPA certificate to pursue a career as an HVAC technician.

There are four different certificates you can obtain.

They all cover the safe use of refrigerant.

Cert I: Allows you to service appliances that have less than 5 pounds of refrigerant in the system

Cert II: If you want to service commercial and residential appliances, you need this certificate, which allows you to handle five pounds or more of refrigerant.

Cert III: This certificate allows you to service and dispose of any low-pressure system.

Universal: This is a good certificate to have as it covers you for all the above and is useful when you want to stick to more than one of the categories.

HVAC Schools to Study In Minnesota

There are plenty of opportunities to study for your HVAC certificate in and around the Minnesota region.

Let’s check out a few below:

Dunwoody College of TechnologyDunwoody College of Technology

The Dunwoody College offers a one-year certificate study for HVAC installation and a two-year associate degree in HVAC in servicing and installation.

The school has previously had 100 percent placement for those who have graduated.

The school only offers day classes, which must be completed onsite.

You do get to chat with employers throughout the course to provide advice and answer questions you have about HVAC.

You can choose to study for a one-year degree or two.

The two years will give you an applied science degree.

You can expect to pay $22,000 on average for the HVAC course.

Hennepin Technical CollegeHennepin Technical College

There are two locations to study at, one being Eden Prairie and Brooklyn Park.

The school was lucky to be accredited with the Excellence Award.

The duration of the course is four semesters, with the choice to choose different credits.

The school and course are known for getting you ready on a serious level for your HVAC technician certificate.

Community and Technical School in MinneapolisCommunity and Technical School in Minneapolis

At the Technical and Community College, you can opt for the two-year applied science degree or the HVAC/R technology and systems that go for 18 months.

A 54-credit course with a residential HVAC that lasts for three semesters.

You can view the fees for the different credits here, which gives you the option to choose not only on your preference but affordability.

Here are some more options that you might want to consider when deciding where to do your HVAC course.

Saint Paul CollegeSaint Paul College

Sheet Metal HVAC Ducts Diploma from Saint Paul College, Saint Paul, MN

Century CollegeCentury College

HVAC-R Degree from Century College in North White Bear Lake, MN

School Name Address
Dunwoody College of Technology Parking lot, 818 Dunwoody Blvd, Minneapolis, MN 55403, United States
Hennepin Technical College 9000 Brooklyn Blvd, Brooklyn Park, MN 55445, United States
Community and Technical School in Minneapolis 1501 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55403, United States
Saint Paul College 235 Marshall Ave, St Paul, MN 55102, United States
Century College 3300 Century Ave N, White Bear Lake, MN 55110, United States

Salary for HVAC Technician in Minnesota

The average wage for an HVAC technician working within the Minnesota area is $50,389 when researched in 2023.

The range can change from as low as $43,544 up to $59,000.

What you earn will depend on how many certifications you have, the company you work for, your experience, and how long you have been working in the field.

There is still a significant shortage of staff in this line of work, according to, so there are plenty of opportunities that you have the chance to find.

Everyone needs heating and cooling, so it’s a job that will always be in demand.

Annual Salary Range:
Annual Salary by Location:
Location Avg. Annual Salary
Minneapolis $52,237
Saint Paul $52,237
Rochester $49,153
Duluth $46,947
Bloomington $47,000
Brooklyn Park $49,920
Plymouth $50,409
Saint Cloud $47,025
Woodbury $45,406
Eagan $45,406

Regional Salary in Minnesota

Region Employed Avg. Annual Salary Avg. Hourly Pay Top 10% Annual Salary Bottom 10% Annual Salary
Duluth, MN-WI180$63,030$30.3$99,640$36,220
Mankato-North Mankato, MN120$63,920$30.73$80,820$40,000
Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI2,910$75,490$36.29$108,590$47,000
Rochester, MN200$65,450$31.47$91,760$38,670
St. Cloud, MN380$61,500$29.57$77,460$47,900
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Heating, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration Mechanics and Installers, OCC Code 49-9021, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Fees and Registration Costs Can I Expect to Pay in Minnesota?

There is no fee for the competency card, but you will have some costs for your license.

You can expect to pay $135.00 for the processing license fee and $280 for the permit.

You cannot complete any type of HVAC work without the license fee, so it’s a must for this type of work.

What Does the Job Outlook Look Like?

The Bureau of Labor Statistics states that HVAC employment will increase 13% throughout the next couple of years.

This will allow for 46,300 jobs.

The average salary starts at a minimum of $49,000 and then jumps to $78,000 for the top earners.

How Long Does the HVAC Course in Minnesota Go For?

You can expect to study for between 1-3 years.

It will depend on what certificates you decide to do and whether the course can be completed full or part-time.

HVAC Technician Info by State

Jamie Willis
Career Specialist at BecomeopediaHi, my name is Jamie Willis, and I have been helping students find their perfect internships and education paths for the last ten years. It is a passion of mine, and there really is nothing better than seeing students of mine succeed with further studies.

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